Football Stars Speak against Violence towards Women

Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten, among his other off-field activities, has also dedicated himself to stopping domestic violence. Witten’s JWSF SCOREkeepers initiative places trained male mentors in battered women’s shelters throughout Texas to demonstrate positive male behavior in an effort to break the cycle of violence that plagues families affected by abuse.

Don McPherson is an ex-quarterback, member of the College Football Hall of Fame, a feminist and educator. In a CNN article in 2013 Mr. McPherson writes:

“Men do not just need to stop being violent. The vast majority of men are not violent. But men do need to stop being silent. Calling violence against women, whether street harassment or sexual harassment or rape or murder, a “women’s issue” allows men to ignore it as if we have no responsibility for it or stake in ending it. We all have grandmothers, mothers, sisters, daughters and female friends and colleagues. Our lives are inextricably interwoven; women’s issues of safety and equality directly affect our lives as men.”

“Beyond that, women are humans, with the same rights to safety and freedom as men. It is therefore our moral responsibility to not remain silent or passively on the sidelines, but to be actively engaged in confronting this problem in every corner of homes, communities and societies.”

Kudos. These two men show in very concrete ways that the concept of manhood defies narrow confines sometimes thrust upon it. Because football players can be – and are – so much more than their stereotypical meathead reputation.

An Epic LEGO Rendering of an Epic Poem

Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey was to retold by VirtuaLUG – in LEGO blocks. Their incredible 300-square-foot layout features numerous scenes from Odysseus’ 10-year adventure. The scenes include but are by no means limited to:

Circe’s Island:

Circe’s Island by Millie McKenzie

Circe’s Island. By Millie McKenzie; image via The Brothers Brick.

Hades:

Hall of Hades by Lee Jones, Leo J. and Adam Reed Tucker

Hall of Hades. By Lee Jones, Leo J. and Adam Reed Tucker; image via The Brothers Brick.

Mount Olympus:

Mount Olympus by Bart Larrow

Mount Olympus. By Bart Larrow; image via The Brothers Brick.

Found via The Brothers Brick.

Kudos! This is such a creative, epic version of the poem beautifully and imaginatively rendered. Because “toy” is such a restrictive descriptor for LEGOs. Because old stuff need not be stuffy.

Seniors as Calendar Stars, Take 2

Inspired by the hugely popular calendar featuring German seniors, Senior Living Communities in the U.S. has created their own version. Again, seniors recreated scenes from movies with dazzling results:

Charlie's Angels Senior Living Communities

Senior Living Communities.

Ghost Busters Senior Living Communities

Senior Living Communities.

Star Wars Senior Living Communities

Senior Living Communities.

Again, because you don’t just stop thinking, dreaming, laughing or existing when you get older.

Bookish Benches in London

In London, benches celebrating landmark books were unveiled in July 2014. These fifty benches are a part of Books About Town, a literacy campaign by Wild In Art and the National Literacy Trust.

London Bench War Horse by Michael Morpurgo

‘War Horse’ by Michael Morpurgo; image vie BBC America.

London Bench The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ by C.S. Lewis; image vie BBC America.

London Bench The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

‘The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes’ by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; image vie BBC America.

All images via BBC America.

Because public spaces can inspire and uplift. Because stories and books matter!