NPR News

Pages

8:03am

Wed March 4, 2015
Goats and Soda

Watch A Film From Mali: The Day Before The Music Died

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 11:44 am

Malian guitarist Vieux Farka Touré.
Courtesy of Kiley Kraskouskas

Just its title has an ominous sense of finality: The Last Song Before the War.

The documentary by Kiley Kraskouskas presents the 2011 Festival in the Desert, a showcase for Mali's incredible musicians that had been held underneath the stars outside of Timbuktu for 12 years. Ten months after the joyous celebration depicted in the film, Islamic extremists took over that part of the country. Among the horrors inflicted by the occupiers was a total ban on music.

Read more

7:52am

Wed March 4, 2015
World

Researchers Explain Why Indian Cuisine Is Exquisite

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Read more

7:52am

Wed March 4, 2015
World

2 Stories Of Law And Order

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Read more

7:02am

Wed March 4, 2015
The Two-Way

Boston Marathon Bombing Trial Begins For Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 7:38 pm

In this courtroom sketch, Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (third from right) is depicted with his lawyers and U.S. District Judge George O'Toole Jr., as O'Toole addresses a pool of potential jurors. The trial begins Wednesday.
Michael Dwyer AP

The trial of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev begins in earnest Wednesday, with opening statements in a capital trial that's expected to last several months. It took nearly two months to seat a jury.

The 18 jurors (including six alternates) will hear and see what prosecutors say is irrefutable evidence of Tsarnaev's role in the notorious twin bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260, as well as in the events that followed, in which a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer was also killed.

Read more

6:23am

Wed March 4, 2015
The Two-Way

Federal Agents Carry Out Search For Evidence Of Illegal Support For 'Birth Tourism'

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 1:22 pm

Federal agents searched more than three dozen locations across three counties in Southern California yesterday for evidence of "maternity tourism" operations.

Maternity tourism — or birth tourism — is when a citizen of another country travels to the U.S. to give birth, so the child automatically receives U.S. citizenship.

That in itself is not illegal. But federal authorities are investigating several businesses that may be breaking the law by helping wealthy Chinese women obtain U.S. visas under false pretenses.

Read more

5:04am

Wed March 4, 2015
NPR News Investigations

Injured Workers Suffer As 'Reforms' Limit Workers' Compensation Benefits

Originally published on Thu March 5, 2015 10:25 am

Lupita Ramirez dresses her husband, Joel, at their home in Rialto, Calif. Joel was paralyzed from the waist down after being crushed by a pallet when he was working in a warehouse.
Patrick T. Fallon for ProPublica

Dennis Whedbee's crew was rushing to prepare an oil well for pumping on the Sweet Grass Woman lease site, a speck of dusty plains rich with crude in Mandaree, N.D.

It was getting late that September afternoon in 2012. Whedbee, a 50-year-old derrick hand, was helping another worker remove a pipe fitting on top of the well when it suddenly blew.

Read more

4:53am

Wed March 4, 2015
NPR Story

Federal Findings Don't Surprise Ferguson Protesters

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 7:52 am

Copyright 2015 KWMU-FM. To see more, visit http://www.stlpublicradio.org.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

We are going to turn now to Emanuele Berry, who is with St. Louis Public Radio. She's been getting reactions from people who are involved in the demonstrations in Ferguson. And good morning.

Read more

4:53am

Wed March 4, 2015
NPR Story

Did Netanyahu's Capitol Hill Speech Affect Nuclear Talks In Switzerland?

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 9:09 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

4:53am

Wed March 4, 2015
Law

Opening Statements To Begin Nearly 2 Years After Boston Bombing

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 7:52 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

3:34am

Wed March 4, 2015
U.S.

Immigrants Worry They'll Face Deportation After Deferred Action Delay

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 3:21 pm

Wilfredis Ayala, an unauthorized immigrant from El Salvador, lives on Long Island, N.Y., with his U.S.-born son, Justin, and Justin's mother, Wendy Urbina.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Around 4 million unauthorized immigrants are stuck in legal limbo more than two weeks after a federal judge in Texas suspended President Obama's move to temporarily protect them from deportation.

Read more

3:32am

Wed March 4, 2015
NPR Ed

Shrink The FAFSA? Good Luck With That

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 4:49 pm

Shortening the FAFSA is a tall order.
LA Johnson/NPR

Look closely.

Buried deep in President Obama's 2016 budget (Page 41) is a proposal to cut up to 30 questions from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.

The Obama administration has already done a lot to make the FAFSA easier — if not shorter. Online technology now allows students to skip questions that don't apply to them.

Read more

6:30pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Law

Round 2: Health Care Law Faces The Supreme Court Again

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 7:52 am

Supporters of the Affordable Care Act celebrate outside the Supreme Court in 2012, after a divided court upheld the law as constitutional by a 5-to-4 vote. The latest battle, which the Supreme Court hears Wednesday, is over whether people who buy insurance through federally run exchanges are eligible for subsidies.
David Goldman AP

Round 2 in the legal battle over Obamacare hits the Supreme Court's intellectual boxing ring Wednesday.

In one corner is the Obama administration, backed by the nation's hospitals, insurance companies, physician associations and other groups like Catholic Charities and the American Cancer Society.

In the other corner are conservative groups, backed by politicians who fought in Congress to prevent the bill from being adopted.

Read more

5:47pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Law

Ferguson Political Leader: DOJ Report Validates Protesters

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 6:25 pm

The Justice Department is set to release a report that condemns the Ferguson, Mo., Police Department for its discriminatory practices. NPR's Melissa Block speaks with local political leader Patricia Bynes about the report and its implications.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

5:47pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Remembrances

'Minnie Monoso,' First Black Latin Professional Baseball Player, Dies

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 6:25 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Read more

5:47pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Politics

House Passes No-Strings-Attached Bill To Fund Homeland Security

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 6:25 pm

An effort by some congressional Republicans to block President Obama's executive actions on immigration by tying it to a Homeland Security spending bill officially failed on Tuesday. House Speaker John Boehner yet again bucked the most conservative wing of his party and brought a "clean" funding bill to the floor. It passed easily, thanks to unanimous backing by Democrats.

Read more

5:26pm

Tue March 3, 2015
The Two-Way

Should Hotel Owners Be Forced To Hand Over Guest Records To Police?

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 11:46 am

When lawyer Thomas Goldstein contended that innkeepers keep guest information anyway to stay in touch with their customers, Justice Scalia cut in: "Motel 6 does this? Jeez, I've never received anything from them!"
iStockPhoto

Hypotheticals about hunting lodges and Motel 6 saved the oral argument at the U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday from being strangled by legal weeds.

At issue was a Los Angeles ordinance that requires hotel and motel owners to record various pieces of information about their guests — drivers license, credit card and automobile tags, for instance. The hotel owners don't dispute they have to do that; what they do dispute is the part of the law that requires proprietors to make this information available to any member of the Los Angeles Police Department upon demand.

Read more

5:20pm

Tue March 3, 2015
It's All Politics

4 Reasons Both Parties Should Be Sweating Bullets Over King V. Burwell

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 1:54 pm

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (from left), Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner have reasons to watch the Supreme Court case closely — and to worry about its outcome.
Drew Angerer Getty Images

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on Wednesday in another case that threatens the survival of Obamacare. This one doesn't challenge the constitutionality of the law itself, it merely challenges the legality of one of the most important parts of the system — subsidies so that everyone can afford health care. If the court strikes down the subsidies for people who live in states that chose not to set up their own exchanges, and who get their health coverage from the federal marketplace — healthcare.gov — it would begin to unravel the entire Obamacare project.

Read more

5:03pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Shots - Health News

FDA Mandates Tougher Warnings On Testosterone

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 5:03 pm

AndroGel, a testosterone replacement made by AbbVie, is seen at a pharmacy in Princeton, Ill.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday that it is requiring drugmakers to warn patients that testosterone products may increase the risk for heart attacks and strokes.

Testosterone replacements are approved to treat men with low testosterone related to medical problems, such as genetic deficiencies, chemotherapy or damaged testicles.

Read more

4:51pm

Tue March 3, 2015
The Two-Way

FAA Is Trying To Keep Hackers Out Of Air Traffic Control, Official Says

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 7:52 am

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told Congress Tuesday his agency is implementing changes to ensure the nation's air traffic control system is protected against computer hackers. Huerta told a House panel "the system is safe," despite a Government Accountability Office report that found "significant security control weaknesses."

Read more

4:40pm

Tue March 3, 2015
The Salt

Tea Tuesdays: Kenyan Farmers See Green In The Color Purple

Originally published on Thu March 5, 2015 4:58 pm

Three varieties of Kenyan purple tea from What-Cha: silver needle purple varietal white tea (from left), hand-rolled purple varietal oolong, steamed purple varietal green tea-style tea.
Jeff Koehler for NPR

Across the picturesque highlands of Kenya's Great Rift Valley, fields of tea shimmer in shades of emerald, lime and moss under the equatorial sky.

Some of these fields, though, are now darkened with patches of purple. The purple comes from leaves with high levels of anthocyanins, natural pigments that also give cranberries, blueberries and grapes their color.

These purple leaves are Africa's newest — and most intriguing — tea.

Read more

4:34pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Parallels

In France, Young Muslims Often Straddle Two Worlds

Originally published on Thu March 5, 2015 10:40 am

Ismael Medjdoub grew up in one of Paris' banlieues. He spends up to two hours a day commuting from his home in Tremblay en France to work and to school at the prestigious Sorbonne in Paris.
Bilal Qureshi NPR

The French, with their national motto of "liberty, equality, fraternity," are so against religious and ethnic divisions that the government doesn't even collect this kind of data on its citizens, but it's believed that nearly 40 percent of the country's 7 million Muslims live in and around Paris.

Read more

4:32pm

Tue March 3, 2015
All Tech Considered

Internet Memes And 'The Right To Be Forgotten'

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 12:10 am

Laina Morris became the "Overly Attached Girlfriend" meme. She has embraced her online fame.
Courtesy of Complex

"Scumbag Steve," "Overly Attached Girlfriend," "Bad Luck Brian." All these Internet celebrities have one thing in common: They didn't intend to become famous. Their pictures just happened to go viral.

Is nothing off-limits? That's something Kyra Pringle has been asking herself in the past couple of days. The South Carolina resident recently found out her 2-year-old daughter Mariah's birthday pictures were being shared online by thousands.

Read more

4:24pm

Tue March 3, 2015
U.S.

Not Clearing The Snow Off Your Car Before Driving Could Cost You

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 6:25 pm

A driver clears his car windshield in Boston on Jan. 27, after a heavy storm hit the city. Pennsylvania could be the next state to pass legislation that would cite drivers that take to the road before removing the hazardous ice and snow.
Robert Nickelsberg Getty Images

After weeks of winter storms, snow fatigue has set in across much of the country.

You may be tired of clearing ice and snow off your car, but that can be a safety hazard. And now you could face a fine in some states.

Mike Taylor of Elkins Park, Pa., says just this week he was behind a car on the Pennsylvania Turnpike when, "Snow on the roof blew off, hit my windshield, forced me to jiggle, and it was only because of the stability of the car and I slowed down that I didn't have an accident," Taylor says.

Read more

4:18pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Law

Attica Prison Guards Plead Guilty To Misconduct After Beating Inmate

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 6:25 pm

In 2011, the three guards in New York state beat inmate George Williams so badly that he suffered two broken legs, broken ribs, a broken shoulder and a severe fracture of his eye socket, among other injuries. NPR's Melissa Block talks to Tom Robbins of The Marshall Project about his reporting in collaboration with the New York Times.

Read more

4:10pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Shots - Health News

10 Questions Some Doctors Are Afraid To Ask

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 5:03 pm

Vidhya Nagarajan for NPR

Imagine that the next time you go in for a physical, you're told there's a new tool that can estimate your risk for many of the major health problems that affect Americans: heart disease, diabetes, depression, addiction, just to name a few.

It's not a crystal ball, but might hint at your vulnerability to disease and mental illness — long before you start smoking or drinking, gain a lot of weight, develop high blood pressure or actually get sick.

And all you have to do is answer 10 yes-or-no questions about your childhood:

Read more

3:47pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Goats and Soda

Psst, We'll Pay You A Bribe If You Read This Story

People all over the world pay bribes because they think the benefit — better health care, education for their kids — is worth the cost.
Ryan Kellman NPR

Your child is sick and requires admission to the hospital. As the clerk tut-tuts over the shortage of beds, he casts a speculative eye over his clipboard. The situation becomes clear: It's time to break out the wallet and cough up a bribe. Again.

Paying bribes for essential health services might seem alien to most of us in the Western world, but it's a fact of life for an estimated 1.6 billion people around the globe, according to a new book.

Read more

3:14pm

Tue March 3, 2015
The Two-Way

Indian State Bans The Slaughter, Sale And Consumption Of Beef

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 7:13 pm

A streetside vendor stands on the pavement next to her cow as it rains in Mumbai, India.
Danish Siddiqui Reuters /Landov

Eating a steak dinner in Mumbai nowadays could land you in prison for up to five years and cost you more than $150 in fines.

Indian President Pranab Mukherjee approved a bill Tuesday that strictly bans the slaughter of cows, along with the sale, consumption or even possession of beef in the state of Maharashtra, where Mumbai is located. The bill will also include a ban on the slaughter of bulls and bullocks, but not water buffaloes.

Read more

2:38pm

Tue March 3, 2015
Parallels

After Netanyahu's Speech, A Reality Check

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 3:12 pm

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks before a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday. Netanyahu said the world must unite to "stop Iran's march of conquest, subjugation and terror." House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio (left) and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, listen.
Andrew Harnik AP

Since first becoming prime minister in 1996, Benjamin Netanyahu has hammered away at Iran's nuclear program, calling it the greatest threat to Israel. Yet Tuesday's speech to Congress, like many before it, sharply criticized the international response to Iran while offering relatively little as an alternative.

Read more

2:37pm

Tue March 3, 2015
The Two-Way

Source: Probe Of Ferguson Police Uncovers Racist Comment About Obama

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 9:08 am

Police officers watch protesters as smoke fills the streets of Ferguson, Mo., on Nov. 25, 2014.
Charlie Riedel AP

A federal civil rights investigation of the Ferguson, Mo., police force has concluded that the department violated the Constitution with discriminatory policing practices against African Americans, according to a law enforcement official familiar with the report.

The investigation, the source says, concluded that blacks were disproportionately targeted by the police and the justice system, which has led to a lack of trust in police and courts and to few partnerships for public safety.

Read more

2:33pm

Tue March 3, 2015
NPR Ed

Where Have All The Teachers Gone?

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 8:29 pm

LA Johnson/NPR

This is the canary in the coal mine.

Several big states have seen alarming drops in enrollment at teacher training programs. The numbers are grim among some of the nation's largest producers of new teachers: In California, enrollment is down 53 percent over the past five years. It's down sharply in New York and Texas as well.

In North Carolina, enrollment is down nearly 20 percent in three years.

Read more

Pages