Money magazine has released 2014’s list of the top 50 small cities in America, and Texas’ McKinney is home to the No. 1 ranking. The magazine uses dozens of factors in their ranking methodology, but relies heavily on economic indicators like the affordability of homes, how much residents make and how good schools are. But, the list isn’t just a rundown of wealthy towns. Regional data that demonstrates diversity, the presence of local art and culture, green spaces and recreation also factor in. You can go here to see the full list, and filter down to check out the best small cities near you ... Discuss

Young Lillian Skinner was the victim of a cruel prank when several fellow seniors at her Texas high school made her wrongly believe she had been nominated to the homecoming court. But when two of the girls on the ballot found out, they decided to give their bullied classmate an evening she’ll never forget. The duo made a deal that if either of them won the title, they’d arrange to have Lillian receive the homecoming queen crown instead, leading to a pretty great on-the-field surprise. What is it about Texas high school football games that makes everything so inspirational? ... Discuss

The U.S. and a group of Arab nations have launched a new bombing campaign, targeting ISIS within Syrian borders. The multiple airstrikes marked the United States’ first major military action in Syria, and targeted Raqqa, the city that ISIS leaders have claimed as the capital of their Islamic State. The nations of Saudi Arabia Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Jordan all assisted in the operation which was aimed at destroying the militant network’s ability to effectively train and lead its fighters ... Discuss

The cast of your childhood’s favorite ice hockey franchise reunited this week in honor of D2: The Mighty Ducks 20th anniversary. (Yeah, you feel super old now, don’t you?) For some reason Emilio Estevez, Joshua Jackson and Kenan Thompson skipped the epic event, which is a real shame, because they missed out on one last flying V. You can go here to see more pictures from the reunion ... Discuss

A new Pew Research study has some interesting findings on some very surprising trend reversals over the past few years, and maybe the most curious findings involve American perceptions on faith and politics.

Back in 2010, research indicated that fewer Americans were interested in mixing faith and political issues. Today, that's changing. 49 percent of Americans say they want houses of worship to “express their views on day-to-day social and political issues." That's up six percentage points since 2010. 41 percent of Americans say politicians show “too little expression of religious faith and prayer,” which is a four percent increase over 2010. Perhaps most surprising: 32 percent of Americans say they want clergy to endorse candidates from the pulpit. That's an eight percent jump from 2010, but it's still a long way from the majority. Nearly twice as many don't want their religious leaders weighing in on who to vote for ... Discuss

Over the weekend, Emma Watson took to the UN to deliver a speech on gender equality. Par for the course for any celebrity of note to take on some cause and give a few speeches about it, but Watson separates herself from the pack by delivering a fourteen-minute powerhouse of raw, eloquent truth.

When I was 8, I was confused about being called "bossy" because I wanted to direct the plays that we would put on for our parents. But the boys were not. When at 14, I started to be sexualized by certain elements of the media, when at 15, my girlfriends started dropping out of their beloved sports teams because they didn't want to appear "muscle-y," when at 18, my male friends were unable to express their feelings, I decided that I was a feminist. And this seems uncomplicated to me. But my recent research has shown me that feminism has become an unpopular word. Women are choosing not to identify as feminists.

And so on. The speech is well worth watching in its entirety, or you can read the entire text here ... Discuss