In 1953, the Swiss chemical company Ciba came to Toms River, N.J. By all accounts, the community was delighted to have it. The chemical plant for manufacturing textile dye brought jobs and tax revenue to the small town on the Jersey shore. The company invested in the town's hospital and donated land for a golf course.
In the New York City prison system, the outlook for juvenile offenders is bleak. They're falling through the cracks, being arrested repeatedly, and being re-released onto the same streets only to be picked up again.
The criminal justice system is failing these 16- and 17-year-olds, says Dora Schriro, the commissioners of the city's Department of Corrections.
It all started on a former plantation in Tennessee. That's where Sandra Arnold's great-grandfather, Ben Harmon, who was born a slave, is buried next to his wife, Ethel. Their final resting spots are clearly marked, gravestone and all, but next to them, Arnold noticed an entire area of unmarked slave graves. She wondered if they could be family, too.
Her research started on that plot, then expanded to the state of Tennessee. Eventually, Arnold learned that it wasn't uncommon to find unmarked slave burial places across the country.
When you hear the words "social network" you probably think of Facebook or Twitter. But years before either of those websites — when most of us weren't using the Internet at all — a smaller, stranger community was emerging around something called WheresGeorge.com, a 15-year-old subculture that's dedicated to the $1 bill.
After four years of self-imposed exile, Pakistan's former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has come home. His plan is to run for office and reclaim political influence, but death threats and legal battles complicate his return.
Overnight temperatures are dipping below freezing and the forecast calls for snow, but cold, boredom and discomfort haven't stopped more than 30 Supreme Court die-hards from camping out for a seat to history.
"I just really wanted to be part of this moment, so I had been planning to come down for months," said Darienn Powers, a college student who came to Washington from New York. "No matter what, it's worth it to be in there and really experience what's going on."
A few months ago, Reid Cherlin, a GQ magazine contributor and former White House spokesman for President Obama, was sent a link to a website with what he says was "a sort of grotesque sketch" of his face.
It was the website of Michael McCutcheon, a 73-year-old retiree who draws sketches of all of the guests on C-SPAN's morning programming. Cherlin was a guest on C-SPAN last year, a pretty normal thing for D.C. pundits.
In the NCAA men's basketball tournament Saturday, Marquette escaped with a 2-point win over Butler. What does it take to win a close game? Grit and determination? Luck? Host Rachel Martin speaks with NPR's Mike Pesca, who was at the game.
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 9:00 am
Nicole J. Georges' latest book is Calling Dr. Laura.
My mother picked me up from school in early April 1994. I was barely a teenager, lips stretched over braces as I focused my attention on the radio dial, seeking an alternative station whenmy mom delivered some news: "Oh, your buddy died."
"Who is 'my buddy?' "
"Uhhh ... whatshisname ... the screaming, you know, the blonde. ..."
ALEX CORNELL: Sometimes you go to dinner with a lot of people you know, but then there's some friends from out of town and you end up sitting next to the, you know, the roommate of the friend who doesn't know anyone...
On-air challenge: You'll be given clues for some five-letter words. In each case, the letters of the answer can be found consecutively somewhere inside the clue. For example, given "Some teenagers' language," the answer would be "slang"(hidden inside "teenagerS' LANGuage").
The brothers in the Emanuel family are known for their success and for their chutzpah. The youngest is Ari Emanuel, a high-powered Hollywood agent. The HBO show Entourage actually based a character on Ari, and that character is a bit, well, blunt — threatening, for example, to rip out someone's tongue and serve it to his son's pet lizard.
One hundred thirty-one prominent Republicans have signed a pro-same-sex marriage legal brief that is clearly at odds with the House GOP leadership and the party's platform in the most recent election. Because of the prominence of the signers, the brief stands out among the more than 150 friend-of-the-court briefs filed in two same-sex marriage cases to be argued at the U.S. Supreme Court this week.
The man who rounded up the group is Ken Mehlman, the former political director for the George W. Bush White House.
Pakistan's former military ruler Pervez Musharraf has returned home after four years of self-imposed exile in Dubai and London. Security was unusually tight as he arrived at Karachi Airport today. The Pakistani Taliban has issued threats to kill the former president. And a Pakistani court has named Musharraf for possible involvement in the 2007 assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. Joining us now from Islamabad is NPR's Julie McCarthy. Hi, Julie.
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 9:15 am
For its 850th anniversary, Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is getting new bells. Nearly all of its bells date from an 1856 renovation. Experts say the 19th century bells toll off key. NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports the new bells will join one original bell, known as Emmanuel, which remains in the south tower.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry touched down in Baghdad today on an unannounced trip 10 years after the U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein. U.S. troops have left but there's plenty for the top U.S. diplomat to do. NPR's Michele Kelemen is traveling with Secretary Kerry. She joins us. Michele, why take this trip now?
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.
This week, the Supreme Court begins hearing arguments in two cases that could determine the future of gay marriage in this country. In a few moments, NPR's Nina Totenberg brings us the story of a prominent Republican from the George W. Bush administration who's now working against many in his own party to legalize gay marriage.
But first, another point of view from one of the country's leading evangelical Christian leaders.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.
GLORIA MALONE: I was a teen mother. I must identify myself as a teen mom. And before I got pregnant, I was honors and AP student. I was involved in the chorus and drama. I was starting to run on the track team. So in every sense, I was the, quote-unquote, person that teenage pregnancy doesn't happen to.
The state of Colorado passed three new gun measures this past week, going above and beyond federal law. Republicans have said the new laws infringe on the rights of gun owners. But at a signing ceremony last week, Democrats said the new laws would save lives.
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 5:54 am
Saturday's NCAA men's basketball shocker? Wichita State toppled Gonzaga, 76-70. Gonzaga is the first top-seeded team to be eliminated, and it's the first time Wichita State is heading to Sweet 16 since 2006, The Associated Press reports. The AP adds:
"Wichita State had the Zags down 13 early. Though Gonzaga (32-3) fought back, the barrage of 3s was too much for the small school from Spokane, Wash."
Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 4:54 am
Explore the documents from the 2010 Mount Carroll, Ill., incident that describe what happened when two young employees died inside a grain bin and detail workplace safety violations found by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
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The night before he died, Wyatt Whitebread couldn't stand the thought of going back to the grain bins on the edge of Mount Carroll, Ill.
The mischievous and popular 14-year-old had been excited about his first real job, he told Lisa Jones, the mother of some of his closest friends, as she drove him home from a night out for pizza. But nearly two weeks later he told her he was tired of being sent into massive storage bins clogged with corn.
The commercial grain industry responded to a record number of grain entrapments and deaths in 2010 with more safety videos, publications and training programs.
"Have tragic incidents still happened? Yes," says Jeff Adkisson, who heads the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois. "Are we working to reduce them further? Absolutely."
Randy Gordon, president of the National Grain and Feed Association, sees no need for additional regulations. "The [occupational safety and health] standards, we think, are very adequate to address this danger," he says.