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Martin Hempfling

Brilliant Location for Girl Scout Cookie Business Empire

Young girl scout takes advantage of a natural phenomenon known as “the munchies.”

The munchies, a fierce pot-induced hunger, cannot be tamed unless you have lots and lots of delicious snacks around to put an end to it. Girl Scout Danielle Lei was trying to sell Girl Scout cookies and came up with the genius idea to tap into that audience when she put her Girl Scout cookie stand right outside of a medical marijuana clinic called Green Cross in San Francisco.

That was quite the business move since 13-year-old Danielle and her mother ended up selling a staggering 217 boxes of delectable Tag-A-Longs and Dulce de Leche.  While this may look like Danielle’s mother might have been condoning the use of marijuana, she insisted that she wasn’t.

“You put it in terms that they may understand,” Danielle’s mother, Carol explained. “I’m not condoning it, I’m not saying go in the streets and take marijuana. It also adds a little bit of a cool factor. I can be a cool parent for a little bit.”

The Girl Scouts of Northern California, the division that Lei is a part of, did not express concern for Lei’s choice to distribute in front of the medical marijuana clinic. “To date we have not attempted to list either ‘permitted’ or ‘prohibited’ locations and have relied on parents and volunteers to make wise decisions for their girls,” Dana Allen, the director of marketing and communications for the Northern California division said. “As always, we evaluate our policies and procedures at the end of each cookie sale and will consider whether further guidelines will be beneficial regarding booth site selection.

Mashable notes that Lei will be posting up in front of Green Cross again on February 22 from 4 p.m.-6 p.m. It wouldn’t surprise me if there turned out to be a line out of the door.

You should also read: We reviewed the DaVinci Ascent Vaporizer

Valentine's Day Pros and Cons of being Single/In a Relationship

There are good things and bad things about both–pick your poison.

Ah, Valentine’s Day… That special day of the year that always reminds me of love, romance, heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, and how many eskimo brothers I probably have. But let’s be honest: in terms of pointless hallmark holidays that for the mere sake of commercialism celebrate things that should be celebrated every day, Valentine’s Day surely takes the cake. Putting aside the obvious good intentions behind the holiday, it relegates the importance of showing love to one another at all times to a single day out of the year; moreover, it insists that we show our love through buying things. 
But despite its commercially contrived message, there are still redeeming qualities to the holiday—both for couples and singles! So I thought I’d use the time I’m not spending at CVS looking for shit that might get me laid to write this article on the pros and cons of being single/in a relationship on Valentine’s Day!

Being In a Relationship Pros:

1. You’re almost guaranteed to have sex with your partner

Yep it’s pretty sweet knowing you’d have to mess up something fierce in order to not get laid today. I mean both parties are clearly trying to get some, so if you have a girlfriend/boyfriend and neither of you end up getting your rocks off, then something probably went wrong somewhere along the way. Just be sure to have the correct name on all your gifts. Makes a huge difference.

2. You get free candy

And the free candy sometimes has messagages written on it, like “B mine” or “love u 4evr” or “thanks 4 the herpes.”
…Ok that last one isn’t a ‘pro’ but getting free candy is. 

3. You get to be blissfully ignorant of how hard it is to be alone

If that sounds depressing to you, congrats you’re not a sociopath. Too often do people (and sometimes myself) experience the sting of lonliness on this day of love and companionship. But not to worry! Thankfully, people in relationships get to revel in the fact that they aren’t alone, and thus experience even more happiness!

Cons:

1. If you don’t have sex, you know your relationship is falling apart like a sad oily house of cards

Assuming you didn’t just start dating (or you did and you’re both just a couple of freaks), if you don’t sheathe the ol’ pork sword on Valentine’s Day, the spark in your relationship is clearly no more/not there. Best to call it what it is before one or both of you ends up in the paper.

2. You don’t actually get free candy

With all the cards and chocolates and flowers and pink teddy bears you’ll be buying for your significant other, the candy you receive is basically marked at airport prices. Nothing says “I love you” like spending lots of money on shit that’ll be forgotten about it a couple of days!

3. You forget how awesome it is to be single

Obvously not true for everyone, but a lot of people are able to see just how much greener the grass is on the other side after this hallmark holiday makes them realize how much they don’t love the person they’re with.

So I may end on a positive note, I’ll start with the obvious ‘being single’ cons:

1. Being single

The first thing that comes to mind for me (being single) is to celebrate V-day by going out, buying a few bottles of wine and some ice cream, and going back home to get drunk and fat while laying naked on my floor screaming Adele songs at my terrified cat with Lifetime original movies playing in the background.

2. Being single

No cards, chocolates, gifts, companionship, affection, kissing, hugging, cuddling, loving, sharing of deep emotional aspects of life, lack of emptiness inside and sense of purpose etc…

3. Being single

And having to look at all the happy couples’ stupid happy faces all over the place…
 

Being single pros:

1. Freedom

How awesome is it to not be held down, not hold someone else down, and to just be able to go out and fuck anybody? It’s pretty sweet, and if you see someone in a bar on Valentine’s Day, chances are pretty good that they came alone and intend to leave not alone. So go get ‘em horny people!

2. More money to spend on yourself

Why don’t you take that second half of your paycheck you were going to spend on candy and bullshit and head on down to the strip club instead! Hey as long as society’s idea of love is being bastardized by corporate marketing, why not take it a step further and experience the kind of love only a company with a C rating from the Better Business Bureau can provide?

3. Self-discovery

Yeah, it’s cheesey but just go with it for a second. People are constantly pressured by society into looking outside for validation and acceptance, and Valentine’s Day is a big part of this in American culture. People who are alone on Valentine’s Day may feel a sense of decreased self-worth; they may feel no one wants them or that they aren’t likable enough, outgoing enough, or good enough in some way to be with someone. This is of course untrue. I’m of the opinion that the grumpy cat meme which says, “If you’re feeling alone on Valentine’s Day, just remember no one loves you on any other day of the year either” is actually an uplifting sentiment. There really isn’t anything special about this day. It was invented to give us another opportunity to spend money. But at the same time, it does spread a positive message of love and acceptance. The important thing to remember is that you matter no less to the people who care about you than on any other day of the year.

So if you’re single today, go out and enjoy yourself. Bang someone you don’t even know (but be safe, obviously). Or don’t; stay home and eat ice cream, it’s up to you. If you’re in a relationship, be sure to treat your significant other with the same level of respect and adoration throughout the year as you do on this day. But overall, just remember that there are people in this world who care about you whether you’re alone on Valentine’s Day or not. 

Bill Nye Trounced Ken Ham in Science vs Creationism Debate

The science guy may have won, but the debate itself turned out to be surprisingly bland.

On February 4th, science rock star Bill Nye ventured into the lion’s den to debate creation museum founder, Ken Ham on his own turf. Both came prepared to this highly-publicized debate, although the outcome was not at all unpredictable.

If Ken Ham thought he could win this debate by using the old “pics or it didn’t happen!” routine, he was sorely mistaken. More than a few times, Mr. Ham responded to a point by literally saying, “You didn’t see it with your own two eyes, therefore it isn’t true.” I’m no expert, but it doesn’t take a logician to identify the fallacies in that banal, juvenile contention. Yet that is Mr. Ham’s entire argument in its most basic form.

The question of the debate was as follows, “Is creationism a viable model of origin in today’s modern, scientific era?” Obviously Ken Ham thinks it is and Bill Nye thinks it isn’t. Unfortunately for a topic that brings forth so many profound ideas, the debate was not as engaging as I had hoped it to be. It was very much by the book, rigidly set on the rails. The facts were most assuredly on Mr. Nye’s side, but nonetheless Mr. Ham would appear to the layman perfectly credible. It confused me as to how he managed to do this, but I realized it was the continuous restating and reiterating of the same points over and over again as if he didn’t even hear Mr. Nye’s responses. The most prominent example of this I can think of was Mr. Ham’s ridiculous “Observational science/Historical science” dichotomy. Mr. Nye refuted that notion a number of times, yet Mr. Ham continued to bring it up.

His basic, “You didn’t see it therefore it isn’t true” argument rests on the idea of dividing science into two parts: things that happen now, and things that happened in the ancient past (observational science and historical science). There would be no way for Mr. Ham to deny the importance of modern science without being a hypocrite and a lunatic; its successes are apparent all around us. But the process by which humans have achieved this modern success is the same process that exposed the fictitious nature of so many bible stories. It’s impossible for Mr. Ham to reconcile these implications with his deeply held belief system, and it would be folly to try and discredit them, so instead he must reframe scientific discovery in a way that can only ever support his model. He does this by attributing the success of the modern age to “observational science” and asserting that our past is “unobservable” because “we weren’t there,” therefore calls it “historical science.” The distinction Mr. Ham is trying to make is of course completely illusory and ultimately makes his creation model an unfalsifiable hypothesis.

Mr. Nye could have pointed this out; he could have scrutinized Mr. Ham’s arguments; put pressure on them, pointing out the fallacies and inconsistencies, and made him sweat. But he didn’t. He did pressure Mr. Ham for a direct answer to his question, “What can creationism predict?” To which he was not given a satisfactory answer. Throughout the debate Mr. Ham was playing a game that Mr. Nye was not addressing—one of argumentative dancing. Interestingly, someone asked the question, “Mr. Ham, what, if anything, would change your mind?” To which he basically responded “nothing.” This is the trademark characteristic of a person who has embraced an unfalsifiable hypothesis as ultimate truth. Nothing, no evidence whatsoever will ever change their mind. Bill Nye was never going to make an argument using only facts and evidence that would expose Ken Ham’s creation model as the fairytale that it really is. To really demonstrate that Ken Ham doesn’t know what the hell he’s talking about, to really trip him up, you need to take off the gloves. This debate was far too measured and civil to really flush out all the BS.

Ultimately the losers of this debate were the people who tuned in. It wasn’t bad, but both sides just stated what their supporters already knew and reiterated their arguments without actually engaging each other or scrutinizing what they said. Nonetheless, Bill Nye came out on top like most expected.

video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mAyBwhiAJ8

Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman Dies at Age 46

The award-winning actor found dead in his apartment after an apparent drug overdose

Too often do highly talented artists depart before we’d like them to. Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, perhaps best known for his Academy Award-winning performance in 2005’s “Capote,” was found dead in his New York apartment around 11:30 this Sunday morning.

A friend had apparently been trying to reach Philip Seymour Hoffman and became concerned at his complete lack of response, according to an official on the scene who wishes to remain anonymous. He went to  Hoffman’s apartment only to discover him lying there with a syringe in his arm and an envelope containing what is believed to be heroin, the official said.

“It’s pretty apparent that it was an overdose. The syringe was in his arm,” the official reported.

Philip Seymour Hoffman had undergone treatment for his addiction previously, although in various interviews he admitted to “falling off the wagon” during the past year or so, after remaining clean for the past 23 years.

Christian McCulloch, 39, who lives nearby, said, “He’s a local. He’s a fixture in the neighborhood. You see him with his kids in the coffee shops, he is so sweet. It’s desperately sad.”

It is indeed desperately sad, and unfortunately, too common. As with many highly talented artists, it is their passion for the craft, dedication to the art, and insane creativity that sometimes fosters a fast-paced lifestyle, which ironically robs them of their ability to share such creative genius with the world. Philip Seymour Hoffman will undoubtedly be sorely missed. 

Recent Interview With Edward Snowden Blacked-Out by Major Media Outlets

Famous whistleblower Edward Snowden releases another interview detailing vital information the NSA doesn’t want you to know

German Television network ARD recently conducted an interview with the world famous (some may say infamous) whistleblower, Edward Snowden, which has been intentionally blacked-out by all corporate media outlets in the U.S., and virtually ignored by other broadcast networks. The video has even been removed from YouTube almost immediately after each time it’s been uploaded. One might be able to reasonably assume it contains important information that authorities would prefer the general public didn’t know anything about.

This appears to be a problem unique to the U.S., however. In Germany and across most of the rest of the world, this interview was treated as a major political event—both in print and in broadcast—that was in no way, shape, or form swept under the rug. To the contrary, it is almost as much a topic of discussion abroad as is Justin Bieber’s DUI here in the states; and when the general populous of a nation is better informed about some kid’s inebriated joy ride than they are about the policies which directly affect their very freedom and privacy, it’s time to re-evaluate what our values and priorities are as a culture. 

In the interview, conducted this past Sunday evening, Mr. Snowden explains succinctly how these domestic surveillance programs undermine, subvert, or otherwise erode our democratic freedoms, as well as the most fundamental tenets of the Bill of Rights. The interview is about 30 minutes long and contains vitally important information within every sentence. Snowden stated that, “[My] breaking point was seeing the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, directly lie under oath to Congress. There’s no saving an intelligence community that believes it can lie to the public and to the legislators who need to be able to trust it and regulate its actions.” He goes on to say with reference to blowing the whistle, “Beyond that, it was the creeping realization that no one else was going to do this. The public had a right to know about these programs. The public had a right to know that which the government is doing in its name, and that which the government is doing against the public.”

So what exactly is the nature of the NSA’s widespread surveillance? To actually realize its breadth and depth is unnerving to say the least. For instance, the NSA is not alone in its dogged surveillance of citizens, and is in fact part of an international alliance known as the five “I’s”. This alliance of intelligence organizations operates with impunity and no oversight. Snowden says, “The five “I’s” alliance is sort of an artifact of the post-WWII era, where the anglophone countries of the major powers banded together to sort of cooperate and share the costs of intelligence-gathering infrastructure. So we have the UK’s GCHQ, we have the U.S. NSA, we have Canada’s Csec, we have the Australian Signals Intelligence Directorate, and we have New Zealand’s DSD. What the result of this was, over decades and decades, was sort of a supra-national intelligence organization that doesn’t answer to the laws of its own countries.”

But of course it doesn’t end there. One of the most disturbing parts of the interview occurs when Snowden details the specifics behind one of the NSA’s (and five “I’s”) most utilized tools for collecting data, known as XKeyscore. Snowden explains, “It’s a front-end search engine that allows them to look through all of the records they collect worldwide everyday… You could read anyone’s email in the world; anybody you’ve got an email address for, any website you can watch traffic to an from, any computer that an individual sits at, you can watch it. Any laptop that you’re tracking, you can follow as it moves from place to place throughout the world. It’s a one-stop shop for access to the NSA’s information. And what’s more is that you can tag individuals using XKeyscore, where, let’s say I saw you once, and I thought what you were doing was interesting, or you just have access that’s interesting to me… and I want access to that network. I can track your username on a website or forum somewhere, I can track your real name, I can track associations with your friends, and I can build whats called a “fingerprint”, which is network activity unique to you. Which means anywhere you go in the world, anywhere you sort of try to hide your online presence, hide your identity, the NSA can find you. And anyone who’s allowed to use this, or who the NSA shares the software with, can do the same thing.”

It seems the only thing George Orwell got wrong in writing 1984 was the year. We are clearly living in a surveillance state which is blatantly violating the Constitution of the United States. It’s interesting to consider those who label Snowden as a “traitor” because, as Snowden himself puts it: “If I am a traitor, who did I betray? I gave all my information to the American public, to American journalists who are reporting on American issues. If they see that as treason, I think people really need to consider who they think they’re working for.”

It’s past due to engage in open debate about this issue. Should these abuses continue, the American people will only see a further decrease in liberty, and a demonstrable increase in prohibition, incarceration, and above all, 24-hour surveillance.

The full interview here: http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=f93_1390833151
Or here: http://benswann.com/media-blacks-out-new-snowden-interview-the-government-doesnt-want-you-to-see/

McDonald's Employee Caught Selling Heroin In Happy Meals

Drugs delivered upon saying the catchphrase “I’d like to order a toy”

Yet another diabolical concoction of pleasure and pain is served up at a Pittsburgh branch of the nation’s most popular fast food outlet! McDonald’s—best known for its Happy Meals, scalding hot coffee, and food of such high quality it never decomposes—is again in the spotlight, this time due to an industrious employee who thought the familiar “Happy Meal” ought to be even happier.

26-year old Shantia Dennis designed a simple, yet marginally successful system of dealing heroin through the franchize’s Happy Meals. Customers who were in the mood for some Big Harry with their Big Macs, or some ferry-dust on their french fries, or a Matsakow-laced Mcflurry, would simply pull up to the speaker and order the Happy Meal “toy” first, using the code phrase “I’d like to order a toy,” then proceed to the window to obtain their drugs and diabetes.

After a tip from an informant, undercover officers from a local narcotics enforcement team built a strong case against Dennis, having bought 10 bags of heroin in stamp-sized packets and recovering 50 more on her person. Authorities have not yet disclosed the how long the Heroin Meal operation had been running.

Katy Perry is SATAN

People in costumes dancing on stage apparently too disturbing for grown adults.

I don’t pay much attention to award shows, but when an unlikely controversy arises during one of them because of crazy, fanatic reactions by highly religious celebrities, I can’t help but take notice. However, I must preface by saying that I in no way shape or form consider myself a fan of Katy Perry. I think her music is just awful. As a matter of fact I’m pretty sure I dislike everything about Katy Perry.

…Almost everything.

But regardless, Katy Perry’s terrible monotonous music is no valid reason to shame an otherwise impressive and artistic performance as “witchcraft” or “demonic glorification,” as Glenn Beck puts it. Moreover, I’m pretty sure no reason at all exists to accuse anything of witchcraft since we don’t live in medieval England or 1690’s Salem, Massachusetts—on top of which the idea of witchcraft simply being a completely ludicrous fiction. Yet Glenn Beck seems to think “It’s full-fledged witchcraft and demonic glorification.” (The video of her performance can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWfD_TXs4fE and Beck’s crazy rant: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ObSAZPrKPLU)

I find this truly shocking even though I probably shouldn’t. Regardless, here’s a guy who has found a great deal of success in various media ranging from TV to radio to print; he’s authored six New York Times bestsellers, is the founder and CEO of Mercury Radio Arts, and clearly possesses the ability to think to some degree. Yet he believes in such primitive, millenia-old boogeymen as witches and demons.

But he doesn’t just believe in them; he believes Katy Perry—of all people—is glorifying and/or engaging in these activities at—of all places—the Grammy’s. I mean if Glenn Beck seriously believes all the nonsense he’s been spewing about her stage performance, he’s going to be pretty shocked when he finds out they made movies out of those Harry Potter books.

But I can’t just pick on Glenn Beck since he, disappointingly and predictably enough, wasn’t the only person to draw the logically sound “demonic” interpretation from her performance. Popular Christian gospel singer Natalie Grant (know who she is? yeah neither do I) tweeted, “We left the Grammy’s early. I’ve many thoughts, most of which are probably better left inside my head. But I’ll say this: I’ve never been more honored to sing about Jesus and for Jesus. And I’ve never been more sure of the path I’ve chosen.”

Her reaction to a stage performance no more disturbing than Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video was to get up and leave early. As if this is Batman Begins or some **** and she’s a little skittish 8-year old Bruce Wayne about to get his parents killed. Most sane people might interpret the performance as a corny, 90’s horror movie-like attempt at being innovative, but there’s always the psycho devout Christian Bible-thumping witchcraft-believing demon-fearing highly conservative interpretation that is, “ewww that creeps me out, therefore SATAN!”

And as most might be able to imagine, there are thousands more who share this ridiculous view. Twitter is rife with tweets such as: “Now all the little girls who look up to Katy Perry will worship Satan!!!” and similar remarks. I can’t help but be reminded of one of my favorite quotes by the late, great George Carlin:

“People are ******* DUMB.” 

US Science Officials Investigate Trend of Erroneous Scientific Practice

U.S. Officials have acknowledged a crisis of “irreproducibility” in bio-medical studies

Recently, U.S. officials have acknowledged the legitimacy of a crisis that has been brewing for years but has not been covered by any major media outlets. Over the past couple decades or so, a handful of scientists have been expressing concern (if not alarm) at a trend of irreproducibility—particularly in biomedical studies. As a consequence, it’s highly probable that much of the research literature in the field has been compromised. Whether due to incompetence or deliberate deception, the “irreproducibility” crisis must be taken seriously.
 
Our present day society is entirely dependent upon science and technology in order to function. Quite literally everything most people in the US and other industrialized nations are familiar with has been made possible through the advances in science and its application, technology. Yet a staggering number of people, many of whom depend on our technology-based society in order to live, have a shockingly inaccurate understanding of what science actually is and why it works. One of the most crucial elements to its success is the ability to reproduce results. If a scientist designs an experiment to test a particular theory and his/her results cannot be reproduced, either the original hypothesis is wrong, or it’s correct but the scientist erred somewhere along the way.

In an essay that appeared in “Nature” published on Monday January 20th, Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institute of Health (NIH), warned that “the checks and balances that once ensured scientific fidelity have been hobbled,” and detailed steps NIH would take to help solve the problem of irreproducibility. But why are these results occurring in such high frequency in the first place?

C. Glenn Begley, a prominent figure in cancer research, said, “Most investigators aren’t out to dupe anyone, but they don’t know what’s acceptable and what’s not.” Such is the case in reporting the one experiment that produced results in favor of the hypothesis, but not the dozens which did not support it. “They get an outlier result and present it as the result,” he said.

The irreproducibility crisis is just one consequence of failing to understand (or perhaps worse–intentionally disregarding and ignoring) the fundamentals behind the scientific process. Continuing to practice science irresponsibly such that reproduction is not possible, or at best random, will result in unfortunate consequences for the real people who would have represented a discarded (but valid) result.

There is perhaps a deeper, more fundamental element of good science; that is legitimate falsification. In layperson terms, a theory is falsified once evidence is found indicating that it is indeed false. This means that the most robust scientific theories aren’t technically proven correct; they instead fail to be disproven time and time again. However, for a theory to gain that robust dependability, it must be tested over and over and over again for years and decades by independent researchers and still produce consistent, predictable results. The irreproducibility crisis, should it continue, would yield inaccurate theories with potentially disasterous results when put into application through our advancing technology.

But, as Begley said, “The real problem is that scientists are reluctant to speak up about studies that won’t replicate because there is so much to lose. If I criticize you, and you review my next grant application, you might (take revenge). That’s why people are afraid to say the reason they couldn’t replicate a study is that it was just plain wrong.”

The importance of removing one’s ego from the equation and practicing good, honest science can hardly be understated.   

5 Interesting Little Known Facts About Dr Martin Luther King Jr

How well do YOU know the man behind the holiday?

Dr. Martin Luther King is one of those individuals whose name is almost universally recognizable. We were all taught in school from a young age the vital importance of Dr. King’s role in leading the Civil Rights movement and ending institutionalized segregation. As he is such a prominent historical figure, practically everyone knows who Dr. King is—but just how much does the average person know about him? Here are five interesting little known facts about one of the greatest advocates of human rights the world has ever known:

1. His original name was not “Martin”

Dr. King was actually born Michael King Jr. after his father’s original name. In 1931, King Sr. traveled to Germany, during which time he experienced many things that influenced him deeply. Among these influences was the decision to change his name from Michael to Martin Luther, after the historic German theologan, Martin Luther. At this time King Jr. was two years old, but King Sr. nonetheless decided to change his son’s name as he did his own.

2. Dr. King received a C in public speaking

If you’ve ever gotten, shall we just say, less than perfect grades in one of your favorite subjects in school, fear not! History is riddled with examples of highly successful people in their fields who did poorly the corresponding subjects in school; most cite Einstein failing math, but not many know that Dr. King was seen as rather unimpressive in the eyes of his instructors as well. During his first year away at seminary school in Chester, Pennsylvania, one of Dr. King’s professors gave him a C in public speaking, despite his father claiming he was the best speaker he’d ever seen.

3. As one might imagine, Dr. King was intelligent—and skipped two grades

The professor who gave him a C in public speaking obviously didn’t know what he was doing, but thankfully he was recognized later in school for his exceptional intelligence. Dr. King was able to enter Moorehouse College at the tender young age of 15 after having skipped grades 9 and 11 in high school. By age 19, he received his bachelor’s degree in sociology.
 

4. Dr. King was a smoker

You won’t find any pictures of him actually smoking, however. Dr. King was extremely secretive with his habit; partially because of the social taboo (which, beleive it or not, existed even in the 60’s in certain fields, such as ministry), and partially because he did not want his kinds to take up the habit. In fact, according to Reverend Kyles, after Dr. King was shot at the Lorraine Motel on that fateful day of April 4th, 1968, Kyles removed the pack of cigarettes from Dr. King’s pocket and got rid of his cigarette butt, so as to preserve his image. 

5. Dr. King was nearly assassinated a decade earlier

On September 20th, 1958, while on a book signing tour featuring his latest work, “Stride Toward Freedom”, Dr. King was approached by a woman named Izola Ware Curry. She asked him if he was Martin Luther King Jr., to which he of course replied, “Yes.” She responded by saying, “I’ve been looking for you for five years.” At which point she produced a letter opener from inside her coat and stabbed him directly in the chest. The blade of the letter opener nearly sliced open his aorta, and because of its dangerous proximity to the vital artery, its removal took doctors over three hours. The surgeon, Dr. Maynard, reportedly said, “Had you sneezed during all those hours of waiting, your aorta would have been punctured and you would have drowned in your own blood.” Thankfully, he did not sneeze.

So there you have it. Five little known facts about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Of course everyone’s thankful for his life and existence on planet earth because we all get a day off from work or school (which is absolutely necessary, by the way) but Dr. King literally sacrificed blood, sweat and tears so that no one would be forced to drink out of separate fountains, or ride in a certain area of the bus, or go to a different school based on the color of their skin. For this, we all owe him a debt of gratitude.