NPR News

Pages

Around the Nation
2:06 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Forensic Advances Raise New Questions About Old Convictions

After a forensic dentist used software to correct a distortion in the image a decade later, the original expert witness recanted his testimony.
Courtesy of Jan Stiglitz

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 4:48 pm

Advances in forensic technology are showing that what used to be considered clear-cut proof of guilt may be nothing of the kind. A California case highlights a growing problem facing courts: what to do when an expert witness changes his mind because of better science and technology.

William Richards was convicted of brutally murdering his wife and is serving 25 years to life. The evidence against him was mostly circumstantial and two different juries were unable to reach a verdict. A third trial was aborted because the judge recused himself.

Read more
It's All Politics
2:00 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Administration Still Fighting For Assault Weapons Ban, Biden Says

Vice President Biden at a December 2012 meeting of police chiefs on gun control, held in Washington, D.C.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 9:00 am

Vice President Joe Biden told All Things Considered co-host Melissa Block in an interview Wednesday that he and the Obama administration plan to continue to fight for a ban on assault weapons to be included in a larger bill in Congress.

That despite signs that such a ban doesn't have enough support, even from members of Biden's own party, to make it through the Democratic-controlled Senate.

Read more
Environment
1:58 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Massive Sinkhole In Louisiana Baffles Officials

After the collapse of a salt mine in south Louisiana last year, a 9-acre sinkhole has flooded the area. It also caused gas and oil leaks, and local residents are fed up.
Debbie Elliott NPR

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 3:43 pm

Louisiana officials are grappling with a giant sinkhole that's threatening a neighborhood. A salt mine collapsed last year, creating a series of problems regulators say they've never seen before, including tremors and oil and gas leaks and a sinkhole that now covers 9 acres.

Residents have been evacuated for more than seven months now and are losing patience.

Ernie Boudreaux lives in a trailer on Jambalaya Street in Bayou Corne, La. Strange things have been happening to his home, he says.

Read more
All Tech Considered
1:46 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Yes, Your New Car Has A 'Black Box.' Where's The Off Switch?

Detective Dave Wells plugs his laptop into a car's event data recorder. A large portion of new cars are equipped with the device, and the government is considering making them mandatory in all vehicles. But some say there should be an "off" option.
Martin Kaste NPR

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 3:43 pm

If you're a vehicle owner and happen to have a car accident in the near future (we hope you don't), it's likely the crash details will be recorded. Automotive "black boxes" are now built into more than 90 percent of new cars, and the government is considering making them mandatory.

Read more
Music Reviews
1:15 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Kacey Musgraves: A Millennial Musician Reframes Country

Kacey Musgraves' major-label debut is titled Same Trailer Different Park.
Kelly Christine Musgraves Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 2:48 pm

Country singers generally romanticize small-town life. But in her hit single, "Merry Go 'Round," from her major-label debut Same Trailer Different Park, Kacey Musgraves does nothing of the sort. It's a remarkable song, but it actually pales alongside others on her great new album.

Read more
It's All Politics
1:09 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Pew Poll: For Many Who've Changed Same-Sex Marriage Views, It's Personal

Frank Capley (left) and Joe Alfano protest the San Francisco county clerk's denial of marriage licenses to same-sex couples on Feb. 14.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Sen. Rob Portman, an Ohio conservative Republican who recently said he now supports same-sex marriage because he has a gay son, evidently has plenty of company.

A new poll from the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press suggests that many Americans have changed their minds — going from opposing to supporting same-sex marriage — because they personally know someone who is gay.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:35 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Scientists: 'No Options' To Stop Massive Asteroids On Collision Course

Actor Bruce Willis on the surface of an asteroid from the movie Armageddon. Lawmakers are questioning the likelihood of the movie's plot becoming reality.
Frank Masi ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 1:40 pm

Without "a few years" warning, humans currently have no capacity to stop an asteroid on a collision course with the planet, scientists told a Senate panel Wednesday.

"Right now we have no options," said former astronaut Ed Lu. "If you dont know where they are, there's nothing you can do."

Read more
The Salt
12:24 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Recipes, Not Rockets: Cookbook Offers New Lens On Gaza

Fatema Qaadan prepares fatta, a meal of buttery rice and griddle bread served with roasted meat.
Courtesy of Laila El-Haddad and Maggie Schmitt

Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 6:21 am

When you think about the Gaza Strip, do you think "organic farming"? How about "family dairy"? Would you expect California pistachios to flavor made-in-Gaza baklava? Have you heard that Hamas has a 10-year plan to develop sustainable local agriculture?

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:19 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

How A Patient's Suicide Changed A Doctor's Approach To Guns

Dr. Frank Dumont at his clinic in Estes Park, Colo.
Barry Gutierrez for NPR

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 6:11 am

Dr. Frank Dumont knew one of his favorite patients was getting depressed.

When Dumont first started seeing him in his family practice, the man was in his 70s. He was active and fit; he enjoyed hiking into his 80s. But then things started to change.

"He started complaining of his memory starting to slip," Dumont says. The man would forget where he had placed objects, and he'd struggle to remember simple words and phrases.

Dumont prescribed antidepressants and saw him every eight weeks or so.

Read more
It's All Politics
11:47 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Voter Cast Off Charlie Crist Tops Florida Governors's Race Poll

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 12:33 pm

Democrats who haven't controlled the governor's mansion in Tallahassee in 14 years could have a good opportunity to win it back next November.

Read more
Law
11:31 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Circle Of Accountability Widens In Steubenville Rape Case

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Guilty verdicts in the Steubenville rape trial appear to be just the start. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine will ask a grand jury to consider charges against others who may share some responsibility for what happened at those now-notorious parties back in August.

Read more
National Security
11:28 am
Wed March 20, 2013

The Value And Risk Of Drawing A Red Line

Originally published on Sun March 24, 2013 6:20 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

The red line is a form of ultimatum in diplomacy, one that's been used by kings, presidents, prime ministers to say do this and we will be forced to respond. Syria, as we mentioned, may have crossed one this week when chemical weapons reportedly killed dozens of people outside of Aleppo. Iran may cross another so-called red line this year over growing concerns the government is developing nuclear weaponry. A presidential threat carries grave weight. It also carries grave risk.

Read more
Iraq
11:20 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Remembering Iraq: How The Personal Squares With The Press

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 12:31 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This week, as we remember the start of the war in Iraq, the media is full of reflections on what went wrong and lessons learned, the decisions that shaped the struggle and opportunities fumbled. Well, we want to hear from Iraq vets today about what you have heard this past week and how that resonates with your experience in Iraq. Give us a call, 800-989-8255. Email us: talk@npr.org. Along the way, we'll also read excerpts from a series of pieces in The New York Times' Opinionator from Iraq vets like this one from Matt Gallagher:

Read more
The Two-Way
10:58 am
Wed March 20, 2013

We Have Liftoff: Apollo Rocket Engines Reportedly Pulled From Ocean Floor

Apollo 11 climbs toward orbit after liftoff on July 16, 1969. In 2 1/2 minutes of powered flight, the S-IC booster lifts the vehicle to an altitude of about 39 miles, some 55 miles downrange.
NASA

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 1:41 pm

Read more
The Two-Way
10:54 am
Wed March 20, 2013

When It Comes To Cyberwarfare, North Korea Is No Newbie

Members of the Korea Internet Security Agency (KISA) check on cyberattacks Wednesday.
Jung Yeon-je AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 11:25 am

Who or what caused a takedown of computer systems at banks and broadcasters in South Korea on Wednesday is still a matter of speculation, but suspicion immediately and unsurprisingly fell on Seoul's archenemy to the north.

If true, it wouldn't be the first time that North Korea, often regarded as technologically backward, has successfully wielded the computer as weapon.

Read more
Shots - Health News
10:50 am
Wed March 20, 2013

As Health Law Turns Three, Public Is As Confused As Ever

Couldn't hurt to make a wish for good health!
Ruth Black iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 5:07 am

As the Affordable Care Act nears its third birthday this Saturday, a poll finds the public actually knows less about the law now than when it passed in 2010. Oh, and a lot of what people think they know just isn't so.

Those are the central findings of this month's tracking poll just released by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Read more
The Two-Way
10:34 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Ahead Of Federal Reserve Statement, Stocks Are Up

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 11:27 am

Update at 2:03 p.m. ET. Rates Unchanged:

Following a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Federal Reserve said in a policy statement today that it is continuing with its "highly accommodative stance of monetary policy."

That means that it will stay the course with its aggressive stimulus, buying $85 billion of bonds a month.

Read more
Author Interviews
10:06 am
Wed March 20, 2013

'Sex And The Citadel' Peeks Inside Private Lives In The Arab World

Shereen El Feki is the author of Sex and the Citadel.
Kristof Arasim Pantheon

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 11:49 am

"I know of young women who have been returned to their families by their husbands because, as you say, they did not bleed on defloweration," Shereen El Feki tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

El Feki, the author of the new book Sex and the Citadel: Intimate Life in a Changing Arab World, spent five years traveling across the Arab region asking people about sex: what they do, what they don't, what they think and why.

Read more
The Salt
9:28 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Whole Milk Or Skim? Study Links Fattier Milk To Slimmer Kids

Parents are currently advised to switch toddlers to reduced-fat milk at age 2.
David M. Goehring/Via Flickr

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 8:23 am

The job of parenting toddlers ain't easy. Consider the 2-year-old to-do list: Get tantrums under control. Potty train. Transition from whole milk to low-fat milk.

Speaking from experience, only one of these things was easy.

As my daughter turned 2 in January, we made the simple switch to reduced-fat milk. Done. Don't need to overthink this one, right?

After all, I'm following the evidence-based advice of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Read more
Iraq
9:24 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Iraq War: Retired Marine Faces The Past

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE, from NPR news. I'm Michel Martin. Today, we are going to spend some time across North Africa and the Middle East. It's the first day of spring, and that means it's the Persian New Year. We are going to celebrate Nowruz later in the program, with a comedian who's putting a new spin on the holiday. That's in just a few minutes.

Read more

Pages