U.S. News

Arts & Life
10:21 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Hey Teenagers! We Want To Hear Your Stories

Are you the next Radio Diaries teen diarist?
M Mujdat Uzel iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri May 10, 2013 6:49 pm

Are you a teenager with a story to tell? NPR and Radio Diaries want to hear it. Write it down, photograph it (and record it if you want) and then submit it to the storytelling site Cowbird.

Beginning in 1996, Radio Diaries gave tape recorders to five teenagers to create audio diaries about their lives. Starting on May 6, All Things Considered will revisit these original diarists, now in their 30s, to document their lives for NPR listeners.

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NPR Story
8:49 am
Fri May 3, 2013

To Combat Rising Seas, Why Not Raise Up The Town?

When the Great Storm of 1900 battered Galveston, Texas, the town simply lifted itself up--in some places as much as 17 feet. Could a similar approach save cities today? Randy Behm of the US Army Corps of Engineers and Dwayne Jones of the Galveston Historical Foundation talk about the costs and feasibility of raising a town, albeit with better technology than Galveston's hand-cranked jacks and mules.

TED Radio Hour
8:00 am
Fri May 3, 2013

What Role Do Relationships Play In Learning?

Rita Pierson at TED Talks Education.
Ryan Lash TED

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 3:18 pm

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode Unstoppable Learning.

About Rita Pierson's TEDTalk

Veteran teacher Rita Pierson believes that relationships are crucial to education. She talks about how classrooms lack the kind of human connections kids need to feel inspired and to learn. Pierson gave her talk as part of the PBS Special TED Talks Education, airing May 7.

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It's All Politics
3:41 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Ayotte Becoming Gun Control Lightning Rod

Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., has drawn the focus of gun control proponents for voting against a bid to expand criminal background checks for gun buyers.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 4:37 pm

Of the senators who have become lightning rods for voting against expanded criminal background checks for gun buyers, New Hampshire Republican Kelly Ayotte is drawing the most bolts.

Video of Ayotte being questioned by the daughter of the principal killed during the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn., has gone viral.

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Around the Nation
3:27 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Birmingham Students Reenact Historic March, 50 Years Later

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 4:22 pm

In Birmingham, Ala., on Thursday, children took to downtown streets in a reenactment of historic events there 50 years ago. It's part of a series of events this year marking Birmingham's crucial role in the civil rights movement.

Around the Nation
3:27 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Sandy Hook Parent: 'Arming Staff And Teachers Is Laughable'

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 4:18 pm

In December, six-year-old Benjamin Wheeler was among those killed in the attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School. Since then, his father, David Wheeler has met with officials in Washington, D.C., urging tighter controls to rein in gun violence. He speaks with Melissa Block about his views on the legislative process and what his path forward is from here.

Economy
3:27 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Housing Recovery Lifts Other Sectors, Too

Chevy trucks line the lot of a dealer in Murrysville, Pa. Sales were up by double digits at Chrysler, General Motors and Ford last month.
Gene J. Puskar AP

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 4:00 pm

The government's employment report for April comes out Friday. It's an important measure of the economy's health and the advance signals have been mixed. One report this week showed layoffs falling to a five-year low, but another suggests disappointing jobs creation.

At least one sector is providing some positive news for the job market: housing.

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Politics
3:14 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Two Nominations Round Out Obama's Second-Term Cabinet

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 3:27 pm

President Obama rounded out his cabinet on Thursday by naming Chicago benefactor Penny Pritzker as Commerce Secretary and White House aide Michael Froman as U.S. trade representative.

Politics
3:14 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

On Recess, Senators Get An Earful Over Failed Gun Vote

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 3:27 pm

Senators whose votes on the gun bill got attention back home have been getting an earful during the recess week, when many are back in their states.

Politics
3:14 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Obama Nominates Campaign Fundraiser For Commerce Secretary

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 3:27 pm

Influential Chicagoan Penny Pritkzer has been tapped by President Obama to lead the Commerce Department.

News
2:39 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

When It Comes To Guns, How Young Is Too Young?

A woman holds a .22-caliber Crickett youth rifle at a Gander Mountain store in Flint Township, Mich. This type of gun, which is marketed to children and comes in a variety of colors, was involved in the shooting death of a 2-year-old girl in Kentucky.
Steve Jessmore The Flint Journal/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 3:27 pm

The shooting death of a 2-year-old girl in Kentucky at the hands of her 5-year-old brother has opened up yet another debate about gun control.

While no one favors the idea of 5-year-olds using weapons without supervision, there is no consensus on the appropriate age to start hands-on training with firearms.

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U.S.
2:35 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Bill Would Put Immigration Verification System To The Test

Employers using the E-Verify program are required to post an E-Verify Participation Poster, shown here in a handout photo. A Senate bill would make participation in the system, used to check employees' immigration status, mandatory for all employers.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 3:27 pm

Some employers around the nation have been using E-Verify to check the immigration status of employees for years. Operated by the Department of Homeland Security, the online system is designed to make it harder to hire unauthorized workers — and harder for those workers to find jobs.

While participation in the program has been voluntary since 1996, the immigration bill now in the Senate would make E-Verify mandatory.

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Shots - Health News
2:16 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Colorado Weighs Reopening A Psychiatric Hospital To Serve the Homeless

Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, center, exits the Fort Lyon Correctional Facility in Las Animas, Colo., on Wednesday after touring the facility. Hickenlooper has proposed closing the facility due to budget concerns.
Andy Cross Denver Post via Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 3, 2013 2:22 pm

Last summer's mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., led Gov. John Hickenlooper to call for stricter gun control and big new investments in mental health care.

Several significant gun bills passed, and a package of mental health reforms is moving forward. But there may not be enough support to win funding for 300 new inpatient psychiatric beds.

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Code Switch
12:49 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Crunching The Numbers On Blacks' Views On Gays

Jason Collins, a journeyman NBA center, came out as gay this week in the pages of Sports Illustrated.
Michael Dwyer AP

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 5:06 pm

A relatively high-profile black man came out this week. And with it, a hardy old narrative got another moment in the sun.

When Jason Collins, a journeyman NBA center, announced that he was gay, many commentators who applauded his disclosure still nodded to the idea of heightened opposition to gay rights among black people.

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National Security
9:57 am
Thu May 2, 2013

Interrogations Without Torture

In the aftermath of the Boston bombings, some critics said investigators should have used harsh interrogation techniques with the surviving suspect. Host Michel Martin speaks with counterterrorism expert and former FBI Agent Joe Navarro about how attitudes about torture have evolved, and what really are the most effective ways to interrogate.

The Two-Way
7:07 am
Thu May 2, 2013

Boston Bombings: A Guide To Who's Who

A makeshift memorial in Copley Square, near the site of one of the Boston Marathon bombings, on April 24.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 8:30 am

As the investigation continues into the April 15 bombings at the Boston Marathon and the crimes that followed, more names are being added to the story. Here's a guide that we'll keep updating, with links to relevant posts or stories. As always, if new information comes in that changes what is being said about anyone, we will pass that along:

THE VICTIMS

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Health
1:02 am
Thu May 2, 2013

New York Tobacco Regulations Light Up Public Health Debate

The New York City Council is considering a number of regulations on cigarettes, including raising the minimum age for buying cigarettes to 21.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 8:09 am

If you're under 21, you may soon have a hard time lighting up in New York City. Public health officials in New York want to raise the minimum age for buying cigarettes.

The initiative is one of three proposed tobacco regulations the City Council will debate at a hearing Thursday afternoon.

"We think if we can prevent people from taking up the habit before they're 21, we might just be able to prevent them from taking it up at all," says New York Health Commissioner Thomas Farley.

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The Salt
4:40 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Bones Tell Tale Of Desperation Among The Starving At Jamestown

The four cuts at the top of this skull "are clear chops to the forehead," says Smithsonian forensic anthropologist Douglas Owsley. Based on forensic evidence, researchers think the blows were made after the person died.
Donald E. Hurlbert Smithsonian

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

"First they ate their horses, and then fed upon their dogs and cats, as well as rats, mice and snakes."

So says James Horn of the historical group Colonial Williamsburg, paraphrasing an account by colony leader George Percy of what conditions were like for the hundreds of men and women stranded in Jamestown, Va., with little food in the dead of winter in 1609.

They even ate their shoes. And, apparently, at least one person.

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Around the Nation
3:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Three Friends Of Boston Bombing Suspect Arrested

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

Dina Temple-Raston talks to Audie Cornish about the three people who face charges in connection with the Boston marathon bombing.

Education
3:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

After Abuse Scandal, Penn State Alums Battle For Board Spots

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

A contentious battle for a spot on Penn State's board of trustees is dividing the university's alumni community. While some candidates and alums focus on the past, others want to push beyond the abuse scandal that shook the school over the last two years. With so much at stake for the much-loved school, some say the board of trustees election is playing out more like a contentious political race for mayor or Congress, not just a spot on a university board.

Politics
3:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Obama Taps Congressman To Oversee Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

President Obama today announced two new heads of agencies that play key roles in the economy. He tapped former wireless and cable industry executive, Tom Wheeler, to head the Federal Communications Commission. And he's naming North Carolina Democrat and veteran Congressman Melvin Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

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Health Care
3:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Florida Legislature At An Impasse Over Expanding Medicaid

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

Republicans and Democrats in Florida's Legislature are at an impasse over whether to expand Medicaid. In order to pressure the Republican leadership to hold another vote, Democrats have invoked a rule requiring all bills to be read aloud in the entirety before they're voted on. In this post-Siri world, Republicans have plugged the bills into an electronic reader, dubbed Mary, who's reading t he bills at double speed to a chamber full of bored legislators.

Middle East
3:10 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Analysts Divided On U.S. Arming Syrian Rebels

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 5:48 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

I'm Melissa Block. And we begin this hour with the war in Syria and the possibility of U.S. involvement. Today, in Damascus, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used the opportunity of May Day to make a rare public appearance. He visited a power plant and said, we hope that by this time next year, we will have overcome the crisis in our country.

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The Two-Way
2:36 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Justice: Prison Compassionate Release Programs Inconsistent

Inmates file by a guard tower at California's Chino State Prison in 2010.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 7:18 pm

"Compassionate release" programs that free inmates with terminal illnesses and limited life expectancies are poorly run and lack clear standards, the Department of Justice's inspector general said on Wednesday.

The Associated Press reports:

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It's All Politics
2:19 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Federal Deficit Is Actually Shrinking

The Treasury Department announced this week it will pay down some of its debt for the first time in six years.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 11:33 am

During the housing bust, taxpayers were forced to bail out mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. But thanks to the real estate recovery, Fannie Mae could end up paying tens of billions of dollars back to the Treasury this summer.

That's just one of the factors behind a better bottom line for the federal government. This week, the Treasury Department announced it will pay down some of its debt for the first time in six years.

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Shots - Health News
1:20 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Mate Doesn't Have Your Back? That Boosts Depression Risk

Having a special someone won't fend off depression if that person doesn't have your back.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 7:21 am

Having a mate is supposed to be good for your mental health.

But if that mate is critical or can't be counted on when the going gets tough, that's worse than having no mate at all, researchers say.

"The quality of your relationships matters more than quantity when it comes to depression," says Dr. Alan Teo, a psychiatrist at the University of Michigan who led the study.

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Author Interviews
11:22 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Criminologist Believes Violent Behavior Is Biological

iStockphoto.com

Twenty years ago, when brain imaging made it possible for researchers to study the minds of violent criminals and compare them to the brain imaging of "normal" people, a whole new field of research — neurocriminology — opened up.

Adrian Raine was the first person to conduct a brain imaging study on murderers and has since continued to study the brains of violent criminals and psychopaths. His research has convinced him that while there is a social and environmental element to violent behavior, there's another side of the coin, and that side is biology.

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Beauty Shop
10:33 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Spring Cleaning: Toss Your Old Jeans!

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Now, we are going to head into the Beauty Shop. That's where we get a fresh cut on hot topics with our panel of women journalists, commentators, bloggers and activists.

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The Two-Way
6:51 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Boston Bombing: No Death Penalty If Suspect Cooperates?

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, in an undated photo released by the FBI.
FBI.gov

Following up on word there have been discussions between lawyers for Boston Marathon bombings suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and federal investigators about sparing him from the possibility of the death penalty if he provides valuable information about the attacks, NPR counterterrorism correspondent

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Shots - Health News
1:17 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Mother And Daughter Injured In Boston Bombing Face New Future

Celeste Corcoran and her daughter, Sydney, were injured in the Boston Marathon bombings.
Ellen Webber for NPR

Originally published on Thu May 2, 2013 9:59 am

Forty-seven-year-old Celeste Corcoran is propped up in her hospital bed. In a nearby window is a forest of blooming white orchids from well-wishers. On the opposite wall, a big banner proclaims "Corcoran Strong."

She's recalling how thrilled she was to be near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, waiting for her sister Carmen Accabo to run by. "I just remember standing there, wanting to be as close as I could to catch her," Corcoran says. "I really just needed to see her face."

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