Medical personnel work outside the medical tent in the aftermath of two explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday. At area hospitals, doctors say they were confronted with the kinds of injuries U.S. troops get in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 11:04 am
Howard Berkes is an NPR correspondent based in Salt Lake City.
It may have been the dumbest thing I ever said. On April 19, 1999, I stood before an audience at Idaho State University in Pocatello, talking about the cruelest month. April, I pointed out, and April 19 in particular, have provided celebrated, infamous and sometimes horrific moments in our history.
What was it about the month, I wondered, or the time of year, that made April so meaningful and at times so cruel? Back then, the list was relatively short:
Credit Nicolaus Czarnecki / Barcroft Media /Landov
A marathon runner, wrapped in a blanket to stay warm after the race, watched Monday as authorities investigated the bombings that shook the finish line area at the Boston Marathon. At least three people were killed and dozens were wounded.
FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard DesLauriers said that they believed the devices used in the attack may have been pressure-cooker bombs stuffed with BBs and nails. Investigators said the bombs may have been left inside nylon bags or backpacks.
This October 2011 photo provided by Melanie Capobianco shows her adoptive daughter, Veronica, trick-or-treating in Charleston, S.C. The child has been the focus of a custody battle between her adoptive parents and her birth father.
Take the usual agony of an adoption dispute. Add in the disgraceful U.S. history of ripping Indian children from their Native American families. Mix in a dose of initial fatherly abandonment. And there you have it — a poisonous and painful legal cocktail that goes before the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday.
At issue is the reach of the Indian Child Welfare Act, known as ICWA. The law was enacted in 1978 to protect Native American tribes from having their children almost literally stolen away and given to non-Indian adoptive or foster parents.
Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 3:21 am
Even as the shock and horror of the deadly explosions at the Boston Marathon had yet to subside Monday, people were turning to online tools to check on the safety of their friends and family who were at the event. The latest estimates of the casualties include more than 3 dozen people injured, with two dead.
As has been the case in previous calamities, Google and the Red Cross helped to connect people with runners, spectators, and volunteers who were at the race.
U.S. Secret Service and U.S. Park Police officers stand guard on Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House Monday. Security there was tightened after at least two explosions went off near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 3:23 am
Monday's explosions in Boston have led to heightened security elsewhere, with New York, Washington and Los Angeles among the cities taking action within hours of the blasts.
"We're stepping up security at hotels and other prominent locations in the city through deployment of the NYPD's critical response vehicles until more about the explosion is learned," Paul J. Browne, the deputy commissioner of the New York Police Department, .
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block. We begin this hour with the horrific story unfolding today out of Boston. Just over four hours into the Boston Marathon, two explosions ripped into a crowd of onlookers and runners not far from the finish line. Boston Police have confirmed at least two people dead, and 23 injured. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick spoke just moments ago, along with the city's police commissioner, Ed Davis.
Medical geneticist Dr. Harry Ostrer (center) talks to the press outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday. The court heard oral arguments on the highly charged question of whether human genes can be patented.
In a case considered pivotal to the future of science and medicine, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court seemed skeptical Monday about a claim that human genes can be patented.
Contending that genes can be patented are the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, which see patents as the keys to new scientific exploration. On the other side are doctors, patients and many scientists, who see gene patents as an attempt to monopolize and block future exploration in the new universe of genetics.
Anne Mostue is a reporter from member station WGBH, in Boston. She was there, covering the race, at the time of the explosions, and she joins us now. And Anne, where were you, exactly, when these bombs went off?
ANNE MOSTUE, BYLINE: I'm - I was a block away, just on Newbury Street, which is parallel to Boylston - where those bombs went off.
Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 7:33 am
People near the finish line of the Boston Marathon described horrific scenes of the chaos that followed two loud explosions in quick succession this afternoon, sending spectators rushing away from the scene in panic as others lay bloodied and wounded on the ground.
One witness, Aaron Michael told member station WGBH that he heard first one explosion and then another.
Christopher Scott, Johnnie Lindsey and Billy Smith drive down a desolate highway toward a prison in East Texas. They've all been there before, serving hard time — 63 years among the three of them.
But this time it's different. They're driving a Hummer. They're dressed to the nines. And they're on a mission. They aim to get an inmate out — a friend of Scott's named Jimmy O'Steen, aka Big O. But this will be a slow-motion prison break. Scott, Lindsey and Smith are all exonerated prisoners.
Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 3:06 pm
Is small-batch hard apple cider the next microbrew? It seems everybody and their brother is experimenting with ways to make the potent stuff profitable. Sales of domestically produced hard cider have more than tripled since 2007, according to beverage industry analysts — and that's not counting Europe, where it has held a steady popularity for centuries.
Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 7:37 am
The new batch of Pulitzer Prize winners has just been announced, with novelist Adam Johnson winning the fiction prize with The Orphan Master's Son. The winners of the prizes for Americans' best work in journalism, drama, music, and writing also receive a $10,000 cash award.
The rover Curiosity and other NASA spacecraft at Mars are now in a radio blackout, as the sun is interfering with transmissions. Curiosity took this self-portrait by combining 66 exposures in February.
Communications between the Earth and Mars are on hiatus for several weeks, thanks to interference from the sun. That means NASA's orbiters and rovers that study Mars will be left to their own devices until radio signals can once again travel between the two planets.
Known as "solar conjunction," the problem arises when the orbit of planets places the sun directly between them.
Originally published on Sun April 14, 2013 3:25 pm
When the Rev. Gordon Cosby founded Church of the Saviour in the late 1940s, it was one of the first interracial churches in the still-segregated District of Columbia. Cosby, who died last month at the age of 95, is remembered not only for his work as a pastor, but also for his commitment to social change.
The New York Yankees' "Craft Beer Destination" met with derision online, after fans noted the beers were all MillerCoors products — and one of them is a cider. The stand now has a new title, the "Beer Mixology Destination."
Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 1:39 pm
The baseball season is still young, but the New York Yankees have already faced harsh public criticism. No, we're not referring to their lackluster record. Instead, the Yanks were accused of trying to hoodwink beer drinkers with a new "Craft Beer Destination" concession stand at their Bronx stadium.
Originally published on Sun April 14, 2013 11:06 am
Inmates fought guards at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, after military authorities decided to end communal housing in one of the prison's camps, and instead put prisoners in individual cells. At least one detainee was reportedly injured by a rubber bullet in the clash Saturday.
The violence began after the facility's commander ordered the move Saturday morning. According to the U.S. Southern Command, the decision was made after detainees covered windows and surveillance cameras, limiting guards' ability to monitor them at all times.
Originally published on Sun April 14, 2013 9:30 am
A police sergeant in Port Canaveral, Fla., has been fired after he brought targets bearing images resembling Trayvon Martin — a silhouetted figure in a hooded sweatshirt, holding a canned drink — to a police target practice session.
"Whether his act was hatred or stupidity, none is tolerable," Port Canaveral CEO John Walsh says of former officer Ron King, in a report by local station WFTV.
Roads End bar on Broad Street in Hazleton, Pa., displays a sign in 2007 that reads "ALL Legals Served." Longtime residents of the city are divided over the recent influx of Spanish-speaking immigrants.
Many residents say Hazleton, Pa., continues life now as a divided city. While some Spanish-speakers build new lives, longtime residents remain split on how the influx has changed their home.
It's not hard to find a Latino business in Hazleton these days, including law firms, insurance agencies and even a migrant education program. Amilcar Arroyo, the publisher of a local Spanish-language newspaper, says Latinos are now firmly establishing themselves as a part of the city.
At 2 p.m., it's crunchtime for students who write for The Harbinger Online, the award-winning, student news site at Shawnee Mission East High just outside Kansas City, Kan. They've been investigating an initiative to develop common curriculum and test guidelines for states.
The young reporters have pored over countless documents about the Common Core State Standards and talked to Kansas state legislators who pushed for their adoption, trying to understand why they're necessary.
School lunch is often synonymous with loud noise. Studies have shown the decibel level in some cafeterias is as high as a lawn mower.
Every so often, though, students at Alice Terry Elementary School, southwest of Denver, are asked not to make any noise.
When the music teacher told students here they'd occasionally have a "silent" lunch break, this was kindergartner Alyssa Norquette's reaction: "Why do we need a silent lunch? Is it because we're too loud or something?"
Numbers crunching has become a big deal in sports. Analytics have been slower to take hold in the tradition-bound game of golf, but it is happening. NPR's Tom Goldman reports on the phenomenon from the tournament most steeped in tradition, the Masters.
The gun control debate continued to dominate the news this week with President Obama coming out strongly in support of reforming the current gun control laws alongside the Newtown families. Host Jacki Lyden speaks with James Fallows, national correspondent with The Atlantic, about that story along with the bird flu in China, North Korea and the Postal Service.
An Xcel Energy crew works to restore a storm-damaged power line on Friday in Sioux Falls, S.D. More than 18,000 homes in the region were without power after a major spring storm brought freezing rain and heavy snow that downed trees and power lines.
Credit Danny Johnston / AP
Larry Gammill, left, and Tim Parks survey tornado damage at a church in Botkinburg, Ark. on Thursday after the building was hit by a tornado. Three tornadoes touched down in Arkansas on Wednesday. The National Weather Service is warning more storms are on the horizon as another warm, wet front is moving up from the Gulf of Mexico.
Credit Dirk Lammers / AP
A large, uprooted tree lies across the yard of a house in Sioux Falls, S.D. on Thursday. An ice storm followed by more than 6 inches of heavy, wet snow downed trees and power lines across the city. Forecasters are calling for another six to 12 inches this weekend.
Credit Rogelio V. Solis / AP
Heavy cranes are covered by debris after a tornado ripped through Kemper County, Miss., on Thursday. A man who was working at the site was killed and another was injured. The tornado was one of at least 12 that touched down in states from Missouri to Georgia this week.
Credit Gretchen Ehlke / AP
Flood waters surround a concession stand near the Milwaukee River in Thiensville, Wis., Thursday. Flooding appeared to be holding steady or falling Thursday, even as meteorologists warned that weekend storms could lead to new problems.
Originally published on Sat April 13, 2013 2:40 pm
Spring is spreading its share of nasty weather throughout much of the Midwest and Deep South, leaving thousands of people without power.
The upper Midwest is just emerging from a storm that dumped several inches of snow in parts of the Dakotas and forced temperatures down to as low as 22 degrees. Now, forecasters are saying another 6 to 12 inches of snow could fall as a new storm rages through Montana, North Dakota and northern Minnesota.
Tiger Woods drops his ball after hitting into the water on the 15th hole during the second round of the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club. He was later assessed a two-stroke penalty for the improper drop.
Originally published on Sun April 14, 2013 5:19 am
Tiger Woods has been given a two-stroke penalty at the Masters, a tournament he's won four times, after a review found that he performed an illegal drop on the 15th hole of his second round Friday. Woods faced a possible disqualification for the infraction.
The incident began when Woods' wedge shot was a bit too on-target — it hit the base of the pin, and shot off the green and into a water hazard.
Originally published on Sat April 13, 2013 1:16 pm
In a rare departure from tradition, Saturday's weekly presidential address was delivered not by President Obama but instead by Francine Wheeler, whose son Ben, 6, died in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings last December.
Flanked by her husband, David, Wheeler called for Americans to urge the Senate to pass gun control legislation that it is scheduled to begin debating in the coming week.