KTEP - El Paso, Texas

Rachel Martin

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A new film grapples with what, if anything, still unifies America. It's called "American Creed," and it's co-produced by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

(SOUNDBITE OF DOCUMENTARY, "AMERICAN CREED")

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A mass shooting has Congress talking about gun control. The question is what, if anything, they'll do.

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Morning News Brief

Feb 21, 2018

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One week after the school shooting in Florida, the renewed push for gun law changes is getting mixed results.

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What are the biggest threats to American national security? Today a Senate committee examines threats from outside as well as some problems within.

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Senators begin a debate on immigration today. And, Steve, this could sort of be a free for all, right?

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Kate Bowler's new memoir, Everything Happens for a Reason And Other Lies I've Loved, is a funny, intimate portrait of living in that nether space between life and death. In it, she shares her experiences with incurable stage 4 cancer and gives advice on what not to say to those who are terminally ill.

Bowler is also the host of Everything Happens, a new podcast.

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After a record point drop on Monday, investors were nervous as the stock market opened this morning. Joining us now, NPR business reporter Jim Zarroli. Hey, Jim.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: Good morning.

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Up until just the other day, the stock market had been on a roll.

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Yeah, we're talking about record highs. And President Trump has been taking credit.

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How do you live after you've died? That's the weighty question behind The Afterlives, a new novel by Thomas Pierce, a former producer at NPR who has become an award-winning author.

The book's main character, Jim Byrd, suffers sudden cardiac arrest at age 30 — and survives.

Atia Abawi is used to looking at war through the eyes of a journalist. She's made a career in news covering Iraq and Afghanistan — the latter being the country her own family fled in the early 1980s.

Increasingly though, Abawi has turned to fiction.

"It was a way for me as a journalist to go beyond those 700 words or that two-minute clip," she says. "To give insight in a way that I couldn't as a journalist, to give the full story, a depth that the reader could take in and find a way to empathize more with the people who are struggling."

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Depending on who you ask, this is a battle over the public's right to know or a battle over whether information is even worth knowing.

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Earlier today a strong earthquake in the Atlantic Ocean caused a tsunami warning in Alaska. Here's the voice of an officer from the Kodiak, Alaska, police force.

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Imagine having one of the worst days of your professional life play out in front of 5 million people.

ABC News anchor Dan Harris doesn't have to. In 2004, he had a panic attack on live TV after years of working in war zones and using drugs to cope with the stress. But that mortifying moment led him to take up meditation.

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And we start with new developments concerning how the Russia investigation began.

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It is day six of anti-government protests in Iran, and the death toll there is rising.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTERS: (Chanting in foreign language).

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We begin this morning with North Korea...

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...Where Kim Jong Un began the new year with a speech broadcast on national television.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

SUPREME LEADER KIM JONG UN: (Speaking Korean).

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Michigan Democrat John Conyers has announced his retirement. He spoke with Mildred Gaddis, a local Detroit radio host this morning.

(SOUNDBITE OF RADIO SHOW, "THE MILDRED GADDIS SHOW")

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More Republicans are opposing Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore - opposing him, but they're still not entirely sure if they can vote for a Democrat.

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