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These Can Be Yours

The consumer in you wants these products.

Lung Ashtrayironic design itemsSure, your friends who smoke are much cooler than you. But wait until you bring out your porcelain lung ashtray to remind them exactly where that smoke is going. Who's cool now?$107, findingcheska.com Portable BBQawesomeEscape from the daily grind by replacing your briefcase with a portable grill. Small, lightweight, and easy to carry, this grill folds out to make a 1.5-square-foot cooking surface (if that's too much bulk, a smaller size is also available). It's perfect for all your emergency grilling needs.$50, iwantoneofthose.com MaptotecartographyThese cotton tote bags are printed with simple maps of different neighborhoods in six U.S. cities (where young, hip people who use tote bags congregate). Traveling to Brooklyn? Buy one ahead of time and study up to make sure you know your Carroll Gardens from your Cobble Hill.$12, maptote.com Smiley PerfumeodorsBased on aromatherapy research, Smiley perfume is infused with scents containing phenylethylamine and theobromine, chemicals that boost euphoria and reduce stress. Wearing this perfume will make you happy-literally.$48, happytherapy.com Political Pet Toyspet productsIf you've ever wanted to set your dog on Michael Moore, now is your chance. Political Pet Toys offers a range of chew toys-from President Bush to Hillary Clinton-so you can express your views through your dog's vicious teeth.$13, politicalpettoys.com Geo Postcardsinformation sharingA modern alternative to a kitschy postcard with "Cleveland" splashed across the front, Geography and Information post cards are designed to be filled in with information about your current location, from average rainfall to population density. Think how pleased your friends will be to hear about your vacation and the kind of pollution you found there.$6, geoandinfo.com GreenDimesgreat ideasWhoever produces all the junk mail that fills your mailbox is wasting a lot of trees and water just to make a useless catalogue that goes straight into the recycling bin (or worse, the trash can). For $36 a year (a dime a day), GreenDimes will prevent unwanted junk mail from reaching your door by removing your name from junk mailing lists (a task beyond the abilities of most mortals). And just to make sure it is getting the job done, GreenDimes will plant a tree when you subscribe.$36/year, greendimes.com
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Photo by Josh Couch on Unsplash

Christopher Columbus, Alexander Hamilton, William Shakespeare, and Sir Walter Scott are getting company. Statues of the famous men are scattered across Central Park in New York City, along with 19 others. But they'll finally be joined by a few women.

Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Sojourner Truth are the subjects of a new statue that will be on display along The Mall, a walkway that runs through the park from 66th to 72nd street. It will be dedicated in August of next year, which is fittingly the 100-year anniversary of the 19th Amendment that granted women the right to vote.

Currently, just 3% of statues in New York City are dedicated to women. Out of 150 statues of historical figures across the city, only five statues are of historical women, including Joan of Arc, Golda Meir, Gertrude Stein, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Harriet Tubman.

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It's easy to become calloused to everyday headlines with messages like, "the world is ending" and "everything is going extinct." They're so prevalent, in fact, that the severity of these statements has completely diminished to the point that no one pays them any attention. This environmental negativity (coined "eco-phobia") has led us to believe that all hope is lost for wildlife. But luckily, that isn't the case.

Historically, we have waited until something is near the complete point of collapse, then fought and clawed to bring the species numbers back up. But oftentimes we wait so long that it's too late. Creatures vanish from the Earth altogether. They go extinct. And even though I don't think for a single second that we should downplay the severity of extinction, if we can flip this on its head and show that every once in a while a species we have given up on is actually still out there, hanging on by a thread against all odds, that is a story that deserves to be told. A tragic story of loss becomes one about an animal that deserves a shot at preservation and a message of hope the world deserves to hear.

As a wildlife biologist and tracker who has dedicated his life to the pursuit of animals I believe have been wrongfully deemed extinct, I spend most of my time in super remote corners of the Earth, hoping to find some shred of evidence that these incredible creatures are still out there. And to be frank, I'm pretty damn good at it!

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The Planet

For more than 20 years. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has served the citizens of Maine in the U.S. Senate. For most of that time, she has enjoyed a hard-fought reputation as a moderate Republican who methodically builds bridges and consensus in an era of political polarization. To millions of political observers, she exemplified the best of post-partisan leadership, finding a "third way" through the static of ideological tribalism.

However, all of that has changed since the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Voters in Maine, particularly those who lean left, have run out of patience with Collins and her seeming refusal to stand up to Trump. That frustration peaked with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

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Politics
NHM Vienna/Hans Reschreiter

Wealth inequality has been a hot topic of discussion as of late, but it's something that's occurred all throughout history. Class structure is a complicated issue, especially when you consider that haves and have nots have been in existence for over 4,000 years.

A study published in Science took a look at over 100 late Neolithic and early Bronze Age skeletons found in a burial site in southern Germany. The study "shed light on the complexity of social status, inheritance rules, and mobility during the Bronze Age." Partly by looking at their teeth and the artifacts they were buried with, researchers were able to discover that wealth inequality existed almost 4,000 years ago. "Our results reveal that individual households lasting several generations consisted of a high-status core family and unrelated low-status individuals, a social organization accompanied by patrilocality and female exogamy, and the stability of this system over 700 years," the study said.

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Culture
via Truthout.org / Flickr and Dimitri Rodriguez / Flickr

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign looks to be getting a huge big shot in the arm after it's faced some difficulties over the past few weeks.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in the Democratic parties progressive, Democratic Socialist wing, is expected to endorse Sanders' campaign at the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queens, New York this Saturday.

Fellow member of "the Squad," Ilhan Omar, endorsed him on Wednesday.

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Politics