U.S. News

The Two-Way
11:38 am
Fri March 29, 2013

New Gas Rules Aim To Clean Up Car Emissions

The new rules' would reduce harmful emissions, the EPA says.
David Paul Morris Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 12:23 pm

  • NPR's Richard Harris reports

Calling them "sensible standards for cars and gasoline that will significantly reduce harmful pollution, prevent thousands of premature deaths and illnesses [and lead to] efficiency improvements in the cars and trucks we drive," the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday proposed national rules to reduce the amount of sulfur in gasoline.

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It's All Politics
10:43 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Boehner Blasts Veteran GOP Lawmaker For 'Wetbacks' Comment

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, left, performs a mock swearing in for Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, on Jan. 3, as the 113th Congress began. On Friday, Boehner condemned Young, the second most senior Republican in the House, for using the term "wetbacks," which Boehner called "offensive and beneath the dignity of the office he holds."
Charles Dharapak AP

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, on Friday condemned the use of the term "wetbacks" by Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, one of the party's most senior members of Congress.

Young's statement, his quick apology, and Boehner's statement that the remark was "beneath the dignity of the office he holds," come at a particularly sensitive time for the Republican Party in its relationship with Hispanic voters.

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Music
10:39 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Creating Church Music: You've Got To Feel It

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 8:01 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

It's Good Friday, so let's stay with the theme of Easter celebrations. Today, we hear from a woman whose life changed when she volunteered to help plan a simple Easter program for her church in Memphis, Tenn. Earnestine Rodgers Robinson had no musical training, but perhaps by divine intervention, her decision to volunteer actually set her on the path to a career composing classical music.

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Food
10:39 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Spicing Up Your Easter Or Passover Meal

Penny de los Santos Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 10:02 pm

Traditional Passover and Easter food is sacred to some. But for observers looking for something different than the same-old lamb or gefilte fish, chef Pati Jinich has some ideas to spice up your holiday table.

She's the author of a new cookbook, Pati's Mexican Table, and has a PBS show by the same name.

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National Security
2:43 am
Fri March 29, 2013

North Korea Hasn't Matched Angry Words With Meaningful Action

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 9:14 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. North Korea's apparently hot-headed young leader, Kim Jong Un, has put his rocket forces on standby to target nearby U.S. bases. That was his response this morning to a display of U.S. military power over the Korean Peninsula yesterday.

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StoryCorps
1:09 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Tattoo Removal Artist Helps Clients With Emotional Scars

Dawn Maestas has removed tattoos from women who have been branded as a result of domestic violence. She recorded an interview with one of her clients, who wanted to remain anonymous.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 9:14 am

Dawn Maestas runs a tattoo-removal business in Albuquerque, N.M., and her clients include women who want the names of abusive partners removed.

Some of them have been tattooed forcibly, like the 22-year-old client who visited StoryCorps with Maestas.

"I was with a guy for five years. He was much older. He was really abusive toward me. After a while when I tried to finally end it, he kidnapped me, held me hostage and tattooed his name all over my body against my will," says the woman, who did not want to be named.

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Environment
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Federal Budget Cuts Hamper Waste Cleanup At Washington Nuclear Reservation

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

In Washington State, radioactive waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation is leaking from underground containment tanks. The site contains the leftovers from plutonium production, some from World War II, most from the Cold War. And it turns out the federal budget sequester is slowing the cleanup.

From Richland, Washington, Anna King of the Northwest News Network has that story.

(SOUNDBITE OF MACHINERY)

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Boston's Longest-Serving Mayor Won't Seek Sixth Term

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

Today at Faneuil Hall in Boston, the city's longest serving mayor, Tom Menino, made it official: He is not seeking re-election.

MAYOR TOM MENINO: I'm here with the people I love, to tell the city I love that I will leave the job that I love.

SIEGEL: All that love gives a sense of what drove Menino for nearly 20 years as mayor.

Bruce Gellerman of member station WBUR has this political profile.

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Obama Renews Call For Gun Bill As Momentum For Legislation Slows

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

It has been more than 100 days since the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Since then, leaders in Washington have talked a lot about gun violence, but they have not passed a bill. Today, gun control advocates tried to give the process a jolt. They planned events around the country for what they called a national day of action. And as NPR's Ari Shapiro reports, President Obama joined in.

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Law
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

If Supreme Court Lets States Define Marriage, Could Legalized Polygamy Make A Comeback?

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This week, we heard two days of arguments at the Supreme Court over same-sex marriage. Yesterday, the court heard Edith Windsor's challenge to DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act. It defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman. I wondered, aside from the man and woman part, what about the one and one part? Polygamy was practiced by the Mormons. Lawyer Paul Clement in his defense of DOMA said this yesterday, although, first, we hear Justice Scalia sneezing.

(SOUNDBITE OF SNEEZING)

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Bad Bets, Costly Promises Put Detroit On The Brink Of Bankruptcy

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

The state of Michigan is taking over its largest city's finances. Washington, D.C., attorney Kevyn Orr's job is to reverse a death spiral in Detroit, brought on by an eroding tax base, and years of unwise financial decisions — like promising generous retiree benefits with money that wasn't there, and a pension financing deal that backfired in a big way. Now, massive debt service that threatens the city's ability to provide even a modicum of services.

Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Report: Adam Lanza's Home Was Stocked With Weapons, Ammunition

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now to Connecticut, where there is new information today about the young man behind the mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Warrants were made public today, detailing items found in the home where Adam Lanza lived, in his car, and in the school. Reporter Jeff Cohen joins us from member station WNPR in Hartford. And Jeff, to start, does this give us a better picture of what was going on in Adam Lanza's life before he committed these murders?

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Kids May Stay On Disability If Their Parents Rely On The Check

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

All this week, we've been talking about the growth in our nation's disability programs. We have explored some of the reasons for that growth: an aging workforce, off-shoring of jobs, the recession and a growing skills gap. As a result, millions of American workers are turning to disability.

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

New Jersey Residents Blame Increased Flooding On Superstorm Sandy

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

Ever since Hurricane Sandy, officials in many New Jersey coastal communities have been reporting more flooding than usual. The National Weather Service confirms the state is experiencing an above average number of winter storms. But locals complain the high water isn't just coming more often and with greater intensity, it's coming regardless of rainfall.

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Animals
2:15 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Algae Bloom Kills Record Number Of Florida Manatees

A rescued manatee suffering from exposure to an algae bloom called red tide in southwest Florida comes up for air as it swims into a critical care tank at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo.
Steve Nesius Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

More than 200 manatees have died in Florida's waterways since January from an algae bloom called red tide, just as wildlife officials try to remove the marine mammal from the endangered species list.

It used to be boat propellers that were the biggest killer of manatees, but red tide has been especially bad this year.

Florida Fish and Wildlife officer Steve Rice routinely scours the Caloosahatchee River in southwest Florida for dead manatees. He has found more than 20 in the past few weeks.

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U.S.
1:29 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Pennsylvania Tightens Abortion Rules Following Clinic Deaths

A police car is posted outside the Women's Medical Society in Philadelphia, on Jan. 20, 2011. Dr. Kermit Gosnell, accused of murder, performed abortions in the clinic.
Matt Rourke AP

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 4:38 pm

A Philadelphia doctor who performed abortions is on trial for murder. Kermit Gosnell, 72, is accused in the deaths of a female patient and seven babies who the prosecutor says were born alive. District Attorney R. Seth Williams laid out the case in disturbing detail in a grand jury report last year.

When authorities raided Gosnell's clinic in 2010 they found squalid conditions: blood on the floor, the stench of urine and a flea-infested cat wandering through the facility.

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Shots - Health News
11:08 am
Thu March 28, 2013

'Love Your Butt' Campaign Tries To Conquer Colonoscopy Fears

Cute it may be. But will it convince you to get a colonoscopy?
loveyourbutt.org

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 11:50 am

The billboard in Washington, D.C.'s Metro stopped me in my tracks on the way to work: "Love Your Patooty."

An advertisement for yoga pants? Padded chairs? No.

Closer examination revealed it was encouraging me to get a colonoscopy.

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The Salt
10:18 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Mapping The Microbes That Flourish On Fruits And Veggies

You call it salad. The bacteria call it home.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 11:06 am

Deadly microbes like salmonella and E. coli can lurk on the surface of spinach, lettuce and other fresh foods. But many more benign microbes also flourish there, living lives of quiet obscurity, much like the tiny Whos in Dr. Seuss' Whoville. Until now.

Scientists at the University of Colorado have taken what may be the first broad inventory of the microbes that live on strawberries, lettuce, tomatoes and eight other popular fresh foods.

It turns out the invisible communities living on our food vary greatly, depending on the type and whether it's conventional or organic.

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Can I Just Tell You?
9:31 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Martin Recalls The Supreme Court 34 Years Ago

Jose Luis Magana ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 2:09 pm

Finally, the pictures of people camping out in the cold outside the Supreme Court, so they could get in to hear the oral arguments on marriage equality, brought back memories for me.

You might not believe this, but on this very day in 1979 my buddy Dave and I walked into the court after having done the same thing — although I confess we weren't as smart about it as the people were this week. We had nothing — no tent, no tarp — just our notebooks and some hot tea we bought at the train station.

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Sports
9:31 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Busted Brackets: Therapy For Sports Fanatics

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 11:52 am

Die-hard fans of Georgetown, Gonzaga and other colleges are feeling down in the dumps after their favored teams lost early in the NCAA basketball tournament. But when do the March Madness blues go too far? Host Michel Martin discusses the psychology of sports fanaticism with professor Don Forsyth of the University of Richmond.

History
9:31 am
Thu March 28, 2013

The People Behind Guthrie's 'Deportee' Verses

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 12:00 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

We want to turn, now, to a current effort to address a decades-old tragedy. In 1948, a U.S. Immigration Service plane carrying undocumented immigrants from California to Mexico, crashed. All 32 people onboard were killed. But while news accounts listed the names of the four people in the flight crew, the 28 undocumented victims were just listed as Mexican deportees.

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Sports
1:44 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Deflections: The Unofficial Stat That Measures Success

Head coach Rick Pitino of the Louisville Cardinals is adamant about recording his team's deflections. It seems to be paying off: The Cardinals have been doing well during the NCAA tournament.
Andy Lyons Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 10:08 am

The Louisville Cardinals are among the teams dominating at this year's men's Division 1 NCAA basketball tournament, which resumes Thursday night. The team credits harassing, active defense for its wins.

But there's something else at work, too: deflections. The team puts a lot of stock in them, though deflections aren't an officially tracked statistic.

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Same-Sex Marriage And The Supreme Court
3:58 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Justice Kennedy May Be Deciding Vote In Defense Of Marriage Act Case

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Wednesday in a case challenging whether the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) means the federal government can deny marriage benefits to same sex couples in states that allow gay marriage. Same-sex couples had reason to be optimistic afterward. Assuming the court can overcome procedural concerns, it looked as if a majority of justices was ready to strike down DOMA.

Around the Nation
3:58 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

86-Year-Old Music Teacher A Hit Among Jailed N.C. Youths

For many inmates, Gordon's music class is their first. "But when they discover they have some talent, it's very exciting," she says.
Briana Duggan WFAE

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:55 pm

Prisons are notoriously difficult places to work in for obvious reasons. But one prison in North Carolina has an employee who is indispensable: a grandmother.

Millicent Gordon is not a guard or doctor — she's a music teacher. And she not only brings her warmth to the state's only youth prison, but her popular butterscotch candies, too.

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Health
2:37 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Simple Strategies Can Prevent Grain Bin Tragedies

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 6:40 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

We continue our series now on a dangerous and illegal practice that kills, on average, 16 people in the U.S. each year. It's called Walking Down the Grain. Employers at farms and grain elevators send untrained and ill-equipped workers into bins to break up wet or clustered grain. In the last four decades, more than 660 people have died because of the quicksand effect of grain.

But preventing these deaths is relatively simple, as NPR's Howard Berkes reports from inside a massive grain bin in Homestead, Iowa.

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Around the Nation
2:33 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Moving People From Welfare To Disability Rolls Is A Profitable, Full-Time Job

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:55 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

What should government do for the country's most vulnerable citizens, for people who just aren't making it? It's a fundamental question. And as we've been reporting this week, America's disability programs have become, in part, a default answer. There are several reasons for this. One has to do with changes we made to our social safety net back in the mid-1990s.

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Law
2:30 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Excerpts From Oral Arguments In Defense Of Marriage Act Case

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now, we're going to take a few minutes to listen to some of today's examination of the Defense of Marriage Act in the Supreme Court. The court usually doesn't provide such speedy access to audio, so this is a rare opportunity to hear the arguments on the same day they happened.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Law
2:30 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Supreme Court Wrestles With Implications Of Defense Of Marriage Act

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

In a second day of historic arguments on gay marriage, the Supreme Court wrestled with DOMA today. The Defense of Marriage Act passed in 1996 defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman for the purposes of federal law and it affects the administration of more than 1,000 federal programs, everything from Social Security and family leave to the estate tax.

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Law
2:30 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Supreme Court May Rule That Defense Of Marriage Act Violates States' Rights

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 7:55 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

For some analysis of today's arguments, we turn again to Tom Goldstein. He's publisher and regular contributor to the website SCOTUSblog. Tom, good to have you back.

TOM GOLDSTEIN: Thank you so much.

CORNISH: All right. So this time around, I had a little bit more trouble following along. And at the beginning of the arguments there was this issue of jurisdiction which got very technical. What's the upshot of this question?

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The Salt
12:56 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Why Illinois Is Roaring Mad About Lion Meat

An Arizona restaurant sold lion meat burgers in 2010 in an attempt to drum up business during the World Cup soccer tournament held in South Africa.
Matt York AP

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 9:44 am

When we heard a few weeks ago that Illinois was considering banning lion meat, our first thought was, who's eating lion meat? And why Illinois?

Turns out, lion meat has been gaining traction among adventurous foodies who argue that the meat can be an ethical alternative to factory-farmed animals — if the meat comes from American-raised circus and zoo animals that were sent to the slaughterhouse in their old age.

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