Coming Out: The Original Revolutionary LGBTQ Action

Bennett Singer explains why coming out matters—for the LGBTQ community and the straight community alike, and especially for those who are not in a safe position to do so.

Not everyone is in a position where it is wise or safe to come out as gay, lesbian, trans, or bisexual—but for those who can, it is a heroic and revolutionary act. We've known that since Harvey Milk campaigned for gay people to make themselves visible to their families and general public: the more stereotypes are met as actual people, the less we fear what is different. There has been an incredible shift in acceptance over the last 30 years and Bennett Singer, co-author of LGBTQ Stats: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer People by the Numbers, puts it down to two primary things: media visibility and data collecting. Mainstream TV has steadily increased its positive portrayals of LGBTQ people, and prominent personalities like Ellen Degeneres are given prime time spots. Progress can also be measured by statistics, which increasingly reflect those people who have the courage to come out, and their families and friends who can now answer surveys more honestly. "Back in 1985 it was 24 percent of Americans who said they knew an open gay or lesbian person," says Singer. "By last year that had shifted up to 88 percent." Conducting these surveys is only half the power of them however, the rest is in the reporting of those stats. Acceptance works through a cycle of reminders and awareness, says Singer: "Growing awareness and growing reporting of this awareness leads to greater acceptance." Bennett Singer's most recent book is co-authored with his husband, David Deschamps: LGBTQ Stats: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer People by the Numbers.

Cornel West: Hope Is an Action We Can All Take

Cornel West talks about everyday poets, being the best of the human species, hope, what wokeness really means, and revolution.

Institutions—governmental, religious, financial, even revolution itself—have a way of turning stale and sour. "Thank God for the history of the heretics and the blasphemers. That's my crowd," says Dr. Cornel West. Quoting from some of history and literature's greatest thinkers and doers, West presents a poetic lecture on the role of hope in America's past and its future, and how to make your voice matter.

Keep reading Show less

How a Math Algorithm Could Educate the Whole World – for Free

Mathematics professor Po-Shen Loh has created Expii, a free education tool that democratizes learning by turning your smartphone into a tutor.

Po-Shen Loh is a Hertz Foundation Fellow, Princeton-educated mathematician, Carnegie Mellon professor, the head coach of the U.S. International Math Olympiad team, and now he’s adding start-up entrepreneur to his knock-out resume. Loh has created Expii, a math and science education tool that aims to turn every smartphone into a tutor. With the support of the Fannie and John Hertz Foundation, he pursued a PhD in combinatorics at the Pure Math Department at Princeton University.

Keep reading Show less

The Future of Money: "Evolved Anarchy" and Burning Man Have the Answers

Bitcoin will bring a seismic shift in global finance, says Toni Lane Casserly: "If you are an institution with integrity, generally I would say you don't have anything to worry about." ... So long to the world as we know it.

Some of us are Bitcoin enthusiasts, while to others this digital currency exists in a far-off plane, spinning in the distant ether like Super Mario coins. To date, Bitcoin hasn’t impacted most of our daily lives – but according to Toni Lane Casserly, co-founder of CoinTelegraph, that’s going to change soon, and it’s going to change us.

Keep reading Show less

Driverless Cars Will be a Social Rather Than Technological Revolution

Driverless cars are nothing short of a revolution – not a technological revolution, but a social one, that will determine how fast we can accept, adapt and trust these new systems to change our lives.  

 

 

Driverless cars may be borne out of science fiction, but they are fast becoming realities on tomorrow's roadways. The transition from driver to robot is nothing short of a revolution. Not a technological revolution, but a social one, that will determine how fast we can accept, adapt and trust these new systems to change how and where we live, work, play and interact with each other. 

 

Japan's auto giant Nissan unveils the new robotic vehicle 'Pivo 2', equippeec with in-wheel electric motors to drive all wheels independently and to pivot its cabin at the company's headquarters in Tokyo. (Photo: YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP/Getty Images)

If you’ve sat in a new vehicle over the last decade, odds are that you’ve come into contact with a computer that assists in the act of driving. That assistance might have been as simple as a beep from the console that tells you when you’re about to back up into a light pole -- a mundane, accessory, maybe slightly annoying tool, not what anybody would put under the banner of science fiction. But that little beep is a harbinger for a coming revolution that will change the design of our cities and neighborhoods, our fundamental relationship with technology, and the way we work and live.

Keep reading Show less