U.S. News

News
2:28 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Following Plea Deal, General's Misconduct Gets Fine And Reprimand

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 4:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

A U.S. Army general accused of sexual assault will not face jail time. Brigadier General Jeffrey Sinclair was sentenced today at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. Sinclair could have faced a prison term of up to 18 months as part of a plea deal. Instead, he'll receive a letter of reprimand and a $20,000 fine. Some members of Congress and victims' advocates are outraged at what they see as a leniency of the sentence. NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman joins me now to talk about what happened.

So, Tom, was this sentence a surprise?

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All Tech Considered
9:55 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Gender Disparities In Tech Flare Up Again: A Reading Guide

An open laptop at the GitHub office.
Dave Fayram Flickr

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 12:42 pm

We are three weeks deep into an on-air exploration of women in technology through our midday show, Tell Me More. Host Michel Martin has led some really thoughtful conversations about the dearth of women in tech and the areas of notable improvement. Online, women leaders in the field have been tweeting a day in their lives since March 1, archived here if you want to check back.

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Law
9:20 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Does Newark's Stop-And-Frisk Stop Crime, Violate Privacy, Or Both?

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 1:21 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. We'd like to start the program today talking about a subject we've discussed before. It's that policing tactic known as stop-and-frisk. Police department across the country have used this technique, but it's gotten a lot of attention in New York City where activists have loudly decried it as racist and demeaning while city and police officials have defended it equally vehemently as a major factor in that city's significant drop in street crime in recent years.

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Parallels
9:08 am
Thu March 20, 2014

A U.S. Border Shelter That Attracts Asylum Seekers Far And Wide

The La Posada Providencia shelter in San Benito, Texas, is run by a group of nuns. While the shelter is just across the border from Mexico, the asylum seekers come from poor, troubled countries around the globe.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 11:58 am

You have no idea what some people will do to reach the United States until you hear their stories.

I've understood this truth ever since I went to Afghanistan in 2001. A man told me how he left his country without any travel documents and somehow crossed Iran by bus and foot, only to be caught in Turkey and sent back. He didn't give up, and a few years later came to visit me in Washington.

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Code Switch
5:03 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Digging For Gold: Study Says Your Race Determines Your Earwax Scent

Didn't your doctor tell you never to stick Q-tips in your ear? Who follows that rule, anyway?
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 6:40 am

I'm not sure what type of situation would lead you to compare your earwax with anybody else's earwax. (Because, gross.) But researchers at the Monell Chemical Senses Center have found that the smell of ear gold varies by race. The volatile organic compounds in earwax — call it cerumen, if you're in a scientific mood — can contain key information about your body and your environment.

So Why Did The Researchers Start Digging?

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Economy
2:31 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Fed Signals It Won't Tap Brakes Until Job Market Improves

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 4:37 am

David Wessel of the Brookings Institution talks about Janet Yellen's first policy meeting and press conference since taking over as chairwoman of the Federal Reserve.

Around the Nation
4:01 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Long, Hot Winter Puts Western Fire Officials On Edge

Flames approach the Blakiston Ranch in California last May during the Springs fire. It eventually torched more than 24,000 acres.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 6:16 pm

The view from atop Conejo Mountain is postcard-worthy. It's 360 degrees of Southern California: mountains, coastline, cookie-cutter homes.

But if you look closer, the greens, blues and browns of Conejo are charred away, burnt a charcoal black.

Mike Lindbery, a captain with the Ventura County Fire Department, was here on this mountain last spring when a wildfire raced up the hillside on its way to torching more than 24,000 acres.

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The Two-Way
3:16 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Al-Qaida Spokesman: I Warned Bin Laden That U.S. Would Kill Him

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith appears in this still image taken from an undated video address. Abu Ghaith, one of Osama bin Laden's sons-in-law and a former spokesman for al-Qaeda, is on trial in New York.
Reuters/Landov

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Osama bin Laden's son-in-law, took the stand in his trial in New York on Wednesday, telling the jury that he warned the al-Qaida leader that America would "not settle until it kills you."

In the surprise testimony, Abu Ghaith recalled a conversation with bin Laden in a cave in Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

"Did you learn what happened? We are the ones who did it," Ghaith recalled, through an Arabic interpreter, his infamous father-in-law asking.

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Sports
2:31 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Far From Home, South Sudanese Basketballer Finds Footing On Court

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 5:59 pm

In three years, Mooseheart High School's basketball team went from also-ran to champion. One of the reasons? Mangisto Deng, a 6-foot-7-inch player from South Sudan. He tells of his journey and team.

Technology
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

U.S. Pulls Out Of ICANN — What Does That Spell For Internet Users?

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 5:59 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Europe
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Tumult In Crimea Has Some Fearing A Cold War Redux

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 5:59 pm

Russia's annexation of Crimea has troubled its relations with the U.S. As Russia and the U.S. begin to trade sanctions in retaliation, analysts wonder if this spells a renewal of Cold War rivalry.

Education
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Pizza, Perseverance And Skills At A Major League Hackathon

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 5:59 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. The University of Maryland, College Park has claimed the title Best School for Hackers. They have got the trophy to prove it. Maryland beat heavyweights like MIT, Stanford, Michigan and Carnegie Mellon and they did it by sending the most students to five hackathons last year. They placed first in two of them.

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Race
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

LAPD Pays Tribute To Josephine Serrano Collier, A Latina Pioneer

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 7:48 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

A moment now to remember a woman who broke new ground on the LAPD. Josephine Serrano Collier(ph) was the first Mexican-American woman on the force. She's now died at age 91. NPR's Shereen Marisol Meraji tells us more.

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Around the Nation
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Grito: The Longest Shout You'll Hear Today, With A History

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 8:38 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Some of our NPR colleagues have been traveling the U.S.-Mexico border - all of it, in fact. MORNING EDITION's Steve Inskeep and several colleagues made plans for a drive from the mouth of the Rio Grande, on the Gulf of Mexico, all the way to Tijuana on the Pacific Coast. And we're broadcasting their reports on people, goods and culture crossing the border on many NPR programs.

Steve is at NPR West in Southern California. Hey there, Steve.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Hi, Audie.

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Politics
2:27 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Capitol's Immigration Stagnation Gets Dreamers Moving On The Border

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 5:59 pm

With deportations at a record high under the Obama administration, and with immigration reform stalled in Congress, Dreamer protest groups are trying to keep the issue alive with actions of their own.

Shots - Health News
2:17 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Most U.S. Women Wouldn't Know A Stroke If They Saw Or Felt One

The rupture of a weakened portion of blood vessel (the dark blue spot in this brain scan of a 68-year-old woman) can prompt bleeding and death of brain tissue — a stroke.
Simon Fraser Science Source

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 8:04 am

When it comes to treating a stroke victim, every minute counts.

Each moment that passes without treatment increases the likelihood of permanent damage or death. So the first steps to getting help are being able to spot a stroke in yourself or others and knowing how to respond.

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Shots - Health News
1:25 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Half Of Americans Believe In Medical Conspiracy Theories

Twenty percent of Americans think that cellphones cause cancer and that the government and big corporations are covering this up.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 4:08 pm

Misinformation about health remains widespread and popular.

Half of Americans subscribe to medical conspiracy theories, with more than one-third of people thinking that the Food and Drug Administration is deliberately keeping natural cures for cancer off the market because of pressure from drug companies, a survey finds.

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Parallels
6:56 am
Wed March 19, 2014

'Saint Death' Now Revered On Both Sides Of U.S.-Mexico Frontier

Claudia Rosales kneels in front of her home altar devoted to Santa Muerte, or Saint Death. Rosales put up a statue of the saint in the city that was taken down by the mayor of Matamoros.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 3:40 pm

The intrepid tourist who visits the market in the border city of Matamoros will find her between the onyx chess sets and Yucateca hammocks. She looks like a statue of the Grim Reaper dressed in a flowing gown. She is Santa Muerte, or Saint Death.

Originally revered as an underground folk saint in Mexico, her popularity has jumped the Rio Grande and spread to Mexican communities throughout the United States.

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Parallels
5:42 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Borderland: A Journey Along The Changing Frontier

Dob Cunningham (right) and his friend Larry Johnson stand on the edge of Cunningham's 800-acre ranch in Quemado, Texas, which touches the Rio Grande. On the other side, Mexico.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 3:42 pm

My colleagues and I drove 2,428 miles and remained in the same place.

We gathered a team, rented a car, checked the batteries in our recorders and cameras. We moved from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. We crossed deserts, plains and mountains. But all the while, we were living in Borderland — zigzagging across the frontier between Mexico and the United States.

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Business
3:01 am
Wed March 19, 2014

Sony Pictures To Lay Off Interactive Group

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 8:28 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Hollywood layoffs.

Sony has notified California's Labor Board that come June it will lay off more than 200 employees at its movie and television studios.

NPR's Mandalit del Barco reports this is happening in a film industry that's facing across the board cost cutting.

MANDALIT DEL BARCO, BYLINE: Sony Pictures Entertainment will reportedly lay off its entire interactive marketing team responsible for online movie promos like this.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE PROMO)

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The Two-Way
6:51 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Review Finds Navy Yard Rampage Could've Been Prevented

Aaron Alexis, whom the FBI says was responsible for the shootings at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., is shown in this handout photo released by the FBI.
FBI Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 10:57 pm

A Defense Department review of the shooting rampage at the Washington Navy Yard, which left 12 dead, found the shooting could have been prevented, if the Navy had properly evaluated and reported the gunman's alarming behavior leading up to the shootings.

NPR's Tom Bowman reports that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered changes in how the government screens its workers and protects its facilities. He filed this report our Newscast unit:

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The Salt
5:19 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

A Bittersweet Goodbye: White House Pastry Chef To Move On

Among Bill Yosses' many confectionary creations for the first family: this nearly 300-pound gingerbread model of the White House, on display in the State Dining Room in November 2012. The house featured not just Bo, the family dog, but also a vegetable garden.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 5:58 pm

The first family must be crust fallen.

Bill Yosses, the White House pastry chef, is moving to New York in June.

"Though I am incredibly sad to see Bill Yosses go, I am also so grateful to him for his outstanding work," first lady Michelle Obama said in a statement. She credited Yosses as "a key partner helping us get the White House Kitchen garden off the ground and building a healthier future for our next generation."

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It's All Politics
4:47 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Obama's Foreign Policy: More Second-Term Misses Than Hits

Russian President Vladimir Putin's actions are beyond President Obama's control, something that holds true for most of the foreign policy issues vexing the U.S. president's second term.
Sergei Ilnitsky AP

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 5:43 pm

Second-term presidents who find their ability to shape domestic affairs limited by congressional constraints often view foreign policy as the arena in which they can post some successes.

Ronald Reagan had his second-term breakthrough with Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet Union's general secretary. Bill Clinton had the U.S. lead its NATO allies into taking military action against the Serbian government of Slobodan Milosevic. Much further back in time, Woodrow Wilson successfully negotiated the League of Nations Treaty (though he couldn't win Senate passage for it).

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Shots - Health News
4:32 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Flu Drugs Saved Lives During 2009 Pandemic

Part of Nebraska's 2009 stockpile of the anti-viral medicine, Tamiflu.
William Wiley AP

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 11:12 am

Drugs used to treat the flu really did save the lives of seriously ill people during the influenza pandemic of 2009-2010, a study in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine suggests.

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Shots - Health News
2:36 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Young People Are Falling Into A Health Insurance Subsidy Gap

Ashante Thurston, John Riascos and Julieth Riascos talk with Mario Ricart, a private insurance agent, about buying health insurance at a kiosk at the Mall of the Americas in Miami last year.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 pm

Some young people seeking to buy health insurance are finding themselves falling into a subsidy gap that leaves them ineligible for financial assistance that was heavily advertised.

Subsidies in the health law were designed to lower insurance costs for people who make around $11,000 to $46,000 a year.

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Shots - Health News
2:33 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Teens Say They Don't Text Or Drink While Driving

I'm not really texting. I'm checking my homework assignments.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 9:03 am

Many teen drivers are earnest when they say they know the risks of drinking and driving or texting behind the wheel. But it seems many either ignore those dangers or don't fully understand what it means to drive safely.

About half of teens who say they never text while driving admitted to texting at red lights or stop signs, according to a survey released Tuesday. And while 86 percent of teens consider driving under the influence to be dangerous, one in 10 who say they never drive under the influence actually do drive after drinking.

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Education
2:25 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Q&A: A Crash Course On Common Core

Cathy Cartier, a proponent of Common Core, teaches an English class at Affton High School in Missouri last month.
Christian Gooden MCT/Landov

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 pm

Confused about the Common Core State Standards? Join the club. That's not to say the new benchmarks in reading and math are good or bad, working smoothly or kicking up sparks as the wheels come off. It is simply an acknowledgement that, when the vast majority of U.S. states adopt a single set of educational standards all at roughly the same time, a little confusion is inevitable.

Below is a handy FAQ about Common Core. We'll continue answering your questions in the coming months. You can post them in the comments section, or on Twitter and Facebook using #commonq.

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Around the Nation
2:03 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Report: Emergency Response Inadequate In Airport Shooting

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 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.

Bad communication, faulty technology, and poor planning - those are just some of the issues highlighted in a report about the deadly shooting last year at Los Angeles International Airport. A TSA worker was killed in that attack and three people were wounded. NPR's Nathan Rott has more.

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Law
2:03 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Nevada Court Quagmire Waits — And Waits — For Voters To Solve It

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The courts are clogged in Nevada. The state's Supreme Court says it is the busiest in the country. Nevada is one of just 10 states without an intermediate appeals court. A proposal to create one is on the ballot this fall.

And as Will Stone of Reno Public Radio reports, voters have rejected that idea in the past.

WILL STONE, BYLINE: On a given day, Barbara Buckley sees just about any kind of legal issue out there.

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News
2:03 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

After A Long Wait, 24 Models In Heroism Get Their Due

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

On today's program, in interviews and stories from NPR reporters, we're following events in Crimea, as well as the continuing search for Malaysian Air Flight 370.

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