Law
1:36 pm
Thu December 26, 2013

How 2013 Became The 'Gayest Year Ever'

Utah's surprise decision to legalize same-sex marriage caps a landmark year for gay rights. The last 12 months saw a huge string of victories, from state legislatures, to Congress, to the Supreme Court.

The Two-Way
12:36 pm
Thu December 26, 2013

Thai Government Says It Won't Postpone Parliamentary Elections

Anti-government protesters flee from tear gas sprayed by police in Bangkok on Thursday.
Kyodo /Landov

Originally published on Thu December 26, 2013 1:04 pm

Thailand's government has rejected a call from the country's Election Commission to delay a February vote to choose a new parliament, as protesters opposed to Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra increasingly resort to violence to disrupt the polls.

Anti-government demonstrations have been going on for weeks as "yellow shirt" protesters — most drawn from the ranks of Thailand's urban middle class — have sought to oust Yingluck, whose government was elected in a 2011 landslide, mostly with support from the country's poorer, rural farming communities.

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NPR Story
11:56 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Officials Call For Delay In Thailand Election Following Violence

Thai anti-government protesters run from tear gas during a rally at a stadium to register party-list candidates in Bangkok. (AFP/Getty Images)

Thailand’s election commission is calling for upcoming elections to be delayed after street battles between security forces and protesters resulted in the death of a police officer and injured nearly 100 people.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra wants the Feb. 2 elections to take place as scheduled, believing she can win and renew her mandate. The street violence adds pressure to take a tougher line against the protesters, risking more chaos and possible intervention by the army.

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NPR Story
11:56 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Walt Disney's Growing Empire

A scene from the most recent "Indiana Jones" film. Disney recently reached an agreement with Paramount allowing Disney to control future production in the Indiana Jones franchise. (indianajones.com)

The Walt Disney Company continues to add to its treasure chest with its recent agreement with Paramount to control production of all future “Indiana Jones” films.

Disney now owns Pixar, Marvel Entertainment, Lucasfilm and the Muppets.

As the Atlantic’s business editor Derek Thompson tells Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson, Disney not only makes money from movies, a lot of its earnings come from television channels, such as ESPN, the Disney Channel, and ABC.

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NPR Story
11:56 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Did 'Queer Eye' Help Change Society's Perceptions of Gay Men?

2013 has seen the LGBT community make incredible political progress: the Supreme Court overturned part of the Defense of Marriage Act and states including Minnesota and — after a long legal battle — California, legalized same-sex marriage, bringing the total number of states that recognize same-sex marriage to 18.

Part of the progress toward gay rights, scholars and activists have noted, is increased visibility of LGBT people. That’s where  “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” comes in. The program debuted on the Bravo cable channel ten years ago.

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The Two-Way
11:48 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Suspect Pleads Not Guilty In Fatal Shooting Of TSA Agent In LA

Paul Ciancia, 23, in an undated photo provided by the FBI.
AP

Originally published on Thu December 26, 2013 1:04 pm

The man accused of fatally shooting a TSA worker at Los Angeles International Airport last month has pleaded not guilty.

Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, entered the plea on Thursday with the federal magistrate at a West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga. His trial is set for Feb. 11.

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Governing
10:51 am
Thu December 26, 2013

In 2013, Federal Workers Found New Reason To Be Unhappy

Cindy VanDerwerker, a maintenance worker at Saratoga National Historical Park, clears leaves from a walkway on Oct. 17 in Stillwater, N.Y.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Thu December 26, 2013 12:08 pm

Elizabeth Lytle is an administrative program assistant with the Environmental Protection Agency in Chicago — "a glorified name for a secretary," she says.

If Lytle isn't thrilled with her title, she's even less enamored of her job.

"The morale is just unbelievably low because we're never recognized," Lytle says. "Management doesn't seem to go to bat for us."

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The Two-Way
10:50 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Cowboys' Emergency QB Kitna Will Give Away His Pay

Quarterback Jon Kitna in 2011, before his retirement from football. He's due to be back in a Dallas Cowboys uniform on Sunday.
NFL Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 26, 2013 10:12 am

Whether or not you like the NFL's Dallas Cowboys, this news may warm your heart:

Jon Kitna, who is coming out of retirement to be the team's emergency quarterback on Sunday, plans to donate his $53,000 paycheck from the game to the Tacoma, Wash., high school where he now teaches math and coaches football.

According to the Dallas Morning News:

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Shots - Health News
10:45 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Common Knee Surgery May Help No More Than A Fake Operation

Knee pain is common, but surgery isn't necessarily the answer, researchers say.
Inna Jacquemin iStockphoto

Originally published on Mon December 30, 2013 5:09 am

Go to the doctor with knee pain, and they might say you've got a meniscus tear and need surgery to fix it. But surgery for this common problem might not be any better at relieving pain than having no surgery at all, according to researchers who went to the trouble of performing fake surgery to find out.

The gold standard for medical research is a randomized controlled trial, but it's hard to sign people up if they might undergo pretend surgery.

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Interviews
9:17 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg: Friends Till 'The End'

James Franco (from left), Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel and Danny McBride all play versions of themselves in the post-apocalyptic comedy This Is the End, written by Rogen and his writing partner Evan Goldberg.
Suzanne Hanover Columbia Pictures

Originally published on Thu December 26, 2013 10:36 am

This interview was originally broadcast on June 11, 2013.

In This Is the End, Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Danny McBride and Jay Baruchel — all playing themselves — are at a party at Franco's L.A. home when an earthquake hits.

At least, they think it's an earthquake. Turns out it's the Rapture — the End of Days, as foretold in the Book of Revelation, has arrived.

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