U.S. News

Code Switch
2:34 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

This Tiny Town Is Trying To Stop Neo-Nazis From Taking Over

Craig Cobb's house on Main Street in Leith, N.D., where he spends his days posting online comments advocating for white supremacists to join his settlement. Cobb, a self-described white supremacist, has invited fellow white separatists to help him transform the town into a white enclave.
Kevin Cederstrom AP

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 2:52 pm

A white supremacist has plans to take over a tiny town in North Dakota and turn it into one for whites only. This weekend, members of one of the nation's largest neo-Nazi organizations will descend upon the town in a step toward making that vision a reality — and several residents are trying to stop them.

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National Security
2:34 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

The Effects Of The Snowden Leaks Aren't What He Intended

Edward Snowden's leaks about the NSA's secret surveillance program have pushed the agency to expedite planned reforms ahead of schedule, according to NSA officials.
Maxim Shemetov Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 3:24 pm

An official assessment of the damage caused by news leaks about government surveillance programs suggests that terrorist groups are changing their communication methods in response to the disclosures, according to officials at the National Security Agency.

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Shots - Health News
12:55 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Study Finds Mixed Results For Back Braces To Treat Scoliosis

Scoliosis didn't keep golfer Stacy Lewis from becoming a top-ranked pro. She spent almost eight years wearing a back brace, yet still had to have surgery.
Jonathan Ferrey Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 1:38 pm

For decades, doctors have been recommending that children with scoliosis wear a back brace so that the sideways curve of the spine doesn't get worse.

But there was scant evidence to prove back braces really help.

And telling a teenage girl she's going to have to wear a brace 18 hours a day for 7 1/2 years, as pro golfer Stacy Lewis did, can be a tough sell for parent and child alike.

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Parallels
12:25 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Will The U.S. Grant A Visa To Sudan's Indicted Leader?

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir, who faces genocide charges, has applied for a visa to come to the U.S. for the annual United Nations General Assembly next week. The U.S. has not yet said whether he'll be allowed in the country.
Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:09 pm

As the host of the United Nations, the U.S. is supposed to let everyone come to the annual U.N. General Assembly, not just the people it likes.

But this year, the proposition is being put to the test. Sudan's president, Omar al-Bashir, was indicted three years ago by the International Criminal Court on genocide charges stemming from the mass killings in Sudan's western Darfur region.

Bashir has also applied for a visa to the U.N. meetings next week.

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The Two-Way
11:59 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Pennsylvania Police Chief Fired Months After Video Rants

A screen grab from a YouTube video featuring former Police Chief Mark Kessler.
YouTube

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 1:57 pm

A Pennsylvania police chief who gained national attention for Internet videos in which he fired high-powered rifles while shouting obscenities against liberals, Secretary of State John Kerry and the United Nations has been fired.

The Gilberton, Pa., borough council voted to suspend Mark Kessler in July. On Thursday, lawmakers handed Kessler his pink slip.

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The Two-Way
11:54 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Beat It, Bidders: Marshals Cancel Jackson Jr. Auction

Guitarist Eddie Van Halen came on stage during a Texas stop of Michael Jackson's 1984 tour to play on "Beat It," the Jackson hit that featured a solo by Van Halen. Now, questions about a guitar that the two supposedly signed have led to the cancellation of an auction of Jesse Jackson Jr.'s goods.
Carlos Osorio AP

"Legitimate concerns about the authenticity of the guitar purportedly signed by Michael Jackson and Eddie Van Halen" have led the U.S. Marshals Service to cancel an auction of the goods forfeited by former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill.

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All Tech Considered
10:46 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Tech Week That Was: New iOS Design And Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto V raked in more than $800 million in sales in its first 24 hours on the shelves.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 11:47 am

It's time for the weekly roundup of what happened here on All Tech and on our airwaves, and a look back at the big conversations in technology.

ICYMI

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Barbershop
9:48 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Is Public Numb To Mass Shootings?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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U.S.
9:48 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Frustrated Adoptive Parents Turn To Online 'Exchanges'

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Later in the program, we'll head into the Barbershop to ask the guys about the video game Grand Theft Auto - once so controversial, now so lucrative. The new version is breaking sales records all over the place, and we'll hear what the guys have to say about that.

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The Two-Way
4:45 am
Fri September 20, 2013

13 People Shot In Chicago; 3-Year-Old Most Seriously Wounded

The scene late Thursday at a park in Chicago's South Side after a shooting there in which 13 people were wounded.
Paul Beaty AP

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 10:24 am

  • From the NPR Newscast: Cheryl Corley reports on the shootings in Chicago
  • On 'Morning Edition': "After Shooting Tragedies, States React With Legislation"

(Our most recent update, at 12:15 p.m. ET., is here.)

A work week that began with a mass shooting in Washington, D.C., that left 12 victims dead concludes with a mass shooting in Chicago in which 13 people, including a 3-year-old boy, were wounded.

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StoryCorps
1:25 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Forging A Different Parenting Path

Dan Miller grew up in a family of nine children in Wisconsin. They were poor, and his father supported them by working at a local paper factory.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 7:30 am

When Dan Miller was growing up, his family lived about a mile away from Wisconsin Rapids, Wisc. He had eight siblings and the family was poor. His father, Robert, supported them by working at Consolidated Papers Inc.

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Around the Nation
1:23 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Calif. Seeks Answers On Questionable Prison Sterilizations

Lawmakers in California have called for an internal audit after an investigation revealed that women were receiving sterilization procedures improperly at several state prisons, including the Valley State Prison for Women, pictured here in 2000.
Gary Kazanjian AP

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 7:04 am

Sitting in her San Francisco living room, Kimberly Jeffrey is combing her son Noel's hair. He groans, but she meets his energy with calm — and adoration.

Noel's birth was not an easy time. While Jeffrey was pregnant, she served a six-month sentence for petty theft at a state prison. When it came time to deliver Noel through a caesarean-section, Jeffrey was also confronted with the prospect of sterilization.

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Around the Nation
11:57 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

12, Including 3-Year-Old, shot In Chicago Park

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 1:34 am

Twelve people, including a 3-year-old, were injured late Thursday when someone opened fire on people in a park on Chicago's southwest side.

Chicago Fire Department officials said the child was in critical condition. Two other victims were also in critical condition. The others were reported in serious to fair condition.

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The Two-Way
5:12 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

House Votes To Slash $40 Billion From Food Stamp Program

A woman and her daughter shop for groceries in New York City's Union Square using electronic benefits transfer (EBT), more commonly known as food stamps, on Wednesday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 6:51 pm

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted Thursday to slash $40 billion from the federal food stamp program.

GOP lawmakers cited what they said was widespread abuse of the program, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, which is intended to help poor individuals and families buy groceries.

The vote to cut food stamps came on a party line vote of 217-200.

"It's wrong for working, middle-class people to pay" for abuse of the program, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said.

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Politics
3:32 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Republicans Push Back On Obama's D.C. Court Nominees

President Obama nominates Robert Wilkins, Patricia Millett and Nina Pillard to fill the remaining vacancies on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on June 4.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 5:07 pm

If President Obama has his way, he will get to fill three more of the 11 slots on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, the second most powerful court in the country. Obama already has filled one vacancy with Sri Srinivasan, who was confirmed back in May.

On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved another nominee for the D.C. Circuit, law professor Cornelia "Nina" Pillard.

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Shots - Health News
3:07 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Boston Hospitals Share Lessons From Marathon Bombing

A Boston police officer wheels an injured boy down Boylston Street as medical workers carry an injured runner after the Boston Marathon bombing in April.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 8:10 am

Boston hospitals say that overall they did well in their response to the bombings because, as crazy as it sounds, they got lucky on April 15.

Dr. Richard Wolfe, chief of emergency medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, says hospitals were fortunate with both the location and timing of the bombs that stunned the city.

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It's All Politics
3:03 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Sen. Ted Cruz Has House Republicans Seeing Red

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, speaks during the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, in August.
Justin Hayworth AP

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 3:40 pm

House Republicans, meet Sen. Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz, House Republicans.

Given the surprise expressed by some House members at the Texas senator's approach to the defunding of Obamacare, perhaps an introduction was in order.

A few dozen House members Wednesday morning successfully coerced a reluctant Speaker John Boehner into tying the Obamacare language to a must-pass government funding bill. This came after weeks of television ads featuring Cruz and fellow Senate Republican Mike Lee advocating exactly that plan, regardless of the consequences.

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Politics
2:48 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

House To Vote On Slashing $40 Billion From Food Stamps

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 5:07 pm

The House today is voting on a plan pushed its Tea Party wing to slash $40 billion from food stamps. That's twice as much as the original House farm bill contemplated, and eight times as much as the Senate bill.

Politics
1:00 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Navy Yard Tragedy Unnerves Mass Shooting Survivors

A small group holds a candlelight vigil Monday on Washington's Freedom Plaza to remember the victims of the D.C. Navy Yard shooting.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 1:12 pm

They never quite get over it.

Whenever there's a mass shooting, a tragedy that occurs with depressing frequency, survivors of earlier events have their own memories brought back vividly and horribly.

Kristina Anderson, one of dozens of people who was shot at Virginia Tech in 2007, now works across the river from Washington, D.C. When the news of the Navy Yard shootings there broke on Monday, her day melted into tears.

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The Two-Way
12:52 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

FBI Chief: Gunman Was 'Wandering Around Looking For People To Shoot'

FBI Director James Comey is pictured earlier this month during his swearing-in ceremony at the Justice Department in Washington, D.C.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:11 am

New FBI Director Jim Comey said the man who went on a rampage at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday was "wandering around looking for people to shoot" and had no apparent rhyme or reason for killing 12 people.

In his first remarks to reporters since taking office this month, Comey said the gunman, Aaron Alexis, ran out of ammunition for his legally purchased, sawed-off shotgun, exhausting a supply in his cargo pants pocket, and then began using a Beretta wrestled from a guard he had shot.

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The Two-Way
12:43 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Clicking The 'Like' Button Is Protected Speech, Court Rules

A videographer shoots the side of Facebook's Like Button logo displayed at the entrance of the Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif.
Kimihiro Hoshino AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 1:52 pm

Clicking the "Like" button on Facebook is tantamount to other forms of protected speech, a federal court decided on Wednesday. That is, clicking Like is protected by the First Amendment as a form of assembly or association.

Bloomberg reports:

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The Salt
12:10 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

'Mountain Dew Mouth' Is Destroying Appalachia's Teeth, Critics Say

Appalachia has a distinct culture of sipping soda constantly throughout the day. "Here in West Virginia, you see people carrying around bottles of Mountain Dew all the time — even at a public health conference," says public health researcher Dana Singer.
Jin Lee Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 9:50 am

Obesity. Diabetes. By now, we've all heard of the health risks posed by drinking too much soda.

But over in Appalachia, the region that stretches roughly from southern New York state to Alabama, the fight against soda is targeting an altogether different concern: rotted teeth.

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Author Interviews
12:06 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

Years After Historic Ruling, Execution Still A 'Random' Justice

Execution witness Don Reid stands in the death chamber of the Texas State Penitentiary on July 31, 1972, where he officially watched 189 men die in the heavy oak electric chair. The Supreme Court struck down capital punishment on June 29 of that year.
AP

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 1:44 pm

In the mid-1970s, Arkansas' electric chair was being used by the prison barber to cut hair, and the execution chamber in New Hampshire was being used to store vegetables. That's because in 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court shocked the nation by striking down Georgia's death penalty law, effectively ending executions in the United States. But the decision provoked a strong backlash among those who favored the death penalty, and within four years the high court reversed course and issued a set of rulings that would permit the resumption of executions.

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Shots - Health News
10:02 am
Thu September 19, 2013

A Hospital Tells Police Where Fights Happen, And Crime Drops

An ambulance makes its way through revelers in Cardiff city center in Wales in 2010. New measures in the city have reduced injuries caused by violence.
Matt Cardy Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 1:25 pm

On Saturday night, the emergency room staff knows all too well what's coming — people showing up with a broken jaw, a knife wound or a bashed-in face, often after too many hours in a pub. Doctors at the emergency department in Cardiff, Wales, realized that many of the people who were injured in fights never reported it to the police. That realization led to a simple program that has radically reduced the toll of violence.

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The Two-Way
5:38 am
Thu September 19, 2013

Navy Yard Shootings: Thursday's Headlines

Flowers, flags and a child's drawing at a makeshift memorial outside the Washington Navy Yard, where a gunman killed 12 people on Monday.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 6:56 am

Picking up the story from where we last left it, here are some of Thursday's headlines about Monday's mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, in which 12 victims and gunman Aaron Alexis died:

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National Security
1:59 am
Thu September 19, 2013

ACLU Posts Fed-Collected 'Suspicious' Activity Reports Online

In the last few years, the feds have expanded efforts to collect tips about people's behavior in the real world. At a fusion center in Las Vegas, workers like Daniel Burns, a program coordinator, analyze suspicious activity reports. The ACLU on Thursday posted more than 1,800 of these reports that were gathered in central California.
Monica Lam Center for Investigative Reporting

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 12:29 pm

With all the talk of spying by the National Security Agency, it's easy to forget the government engages in off-line surveillance, too. In the last few years, the feds have expanded efforts to collect tips about people's behavior in the real world; they're called suspicious activity reports.

Hal Bergman, a freelance photographer in Los Angeles, has a fondness for industrial scenes, bridges, ports and refineries.

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It's All Politics
4:21 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

Poll: Half Of Americans See Russia As 'Unfriendly' Or Worse

President Obama meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Northern Ireland on June 17. A new Gallup poll says Americans are increasingly viewing both Putin and Russia less favorably.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 5:08 pm

During the 2012 presidential race, Republican Mitt Romney was mocked by President Obama during a debate for calling Russia — and not al-Qaida — the "No. 1 geopolitical foe" of the United States.

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Economy
4:12 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

The Fed's Surprising Decision: Should You Cheer Or Boo?

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke arrives to speak at a news conference Wednesday in Washington, D.C. The Fed cut its economic growth forecasts and said it would keep buying bonds in a bid to keep interest rates down.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

If you are trying to buy a home, you just got good news: The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it is not going to try to drive up long-term interest rates just yet.

Stock investors are happy for you. They like cheap mortgages too because a robust housing market creates jobs. To celebrate, they bought more shares, sending the Dow Jones industrial average up 147.21 to an all-time high of 15,676.94.

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It's All Politics
3:02 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

Atheists Start PAC To Elect Nonreligious Candidates

Bishop McNeil, who isn't a cleric despite his name, speaks to reporters Wednesday at a news conference to introduce the Freethought Equality Fund PAC.
Frank James NPR

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 3:13 pm

Americans who count themselves among the "nones" — as in atheists, agnostics or those of no definite religious affiliation — have launched a new political action committee.

The goal? To support the election of like-minded lawmakers or, at a minimum, candidates committed to upholding the constitutional separation between church and state.

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Mental Health
3:00 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

After Attacks, Seattle Rethinks How To Treat Mentally Ill

Police officials stand next to a bullet-ridden Seattle Metro bus on Aug. 12. A man with a history of mental illness shot and wounded the driver, then died in a chaotic shootout with police.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 6:01 pm

The Navy Yard massacre may renew concerns over the potential dangers of mentally ill people who don't get treatment. That issue is especially hot right now in Seattle, where the mayor has called untreated mental illness an "emergency."

Unstable In Seattle

Seattle's Pioneer Square is an uneasy mix of art galleries and skid road; it's gelato over here, and heroin over there. And then there's mental illness.

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