Audie Cornish

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We've learned the names of the Marines killed yesterday in Chattanooga. One was Sergeant Carson Holmquist. He joined the Marines six years ago. From Wisconsin today, his father told NPR, he died doing what he loved - fighting for our country.

For a certain kind of theater goer, the name Julie Taymor is enough to get them to the box office. Ticket holders outside New York's Public Theater call her a "pioneer" and a "terrific director." They're waiting to see Taymor's new play, Grounded — an intimate, political, one-woman show that seems to be the opposite of what the director is known for, which is spectacle.

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MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm joined now by my colleague Audie Cornish, who's been reporting this week on Muslims in Western Europe. Audie, hi.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Hey there, Melissa.

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.

Jihadi John, runaway schoolgirls, no-go zones: the headlines are everywhere in Great Britain.

If you are Muslim in Britain, you can't get away from them. If you're Salman Farsi, you're often at the center of it.

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Archivists at the Library of Congress are hard at work cataloging the papers of Rosa Parks, received on loan recently after a legal battle kept them under lock and key for the past decade.

Among the collection are a receipt for a voting booth's poll tax, postcards from Martin Luther King Jr., a datebook with the names of volunteer carpool drivers who would help blacks get to work during the Montgomery Bus Boycott and thousands of other historic documents.

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This is one of those questions that is perfect for a Congressional hearing, though not so perfect for the witness. The question is how a man managed to get so far onto the White House grounds.

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Suicide rates among middle-aged men in America have shown a sudden, distressing increase in the last decade. For our series on men, Shankar Vedantam talks with Audie Cornish about the trend and what some researchers think might be causing it.

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On a typical morning on Ben Hewitt's small farm in Cabot, Vt., he and his wife, Penny, and their two sons wake up early. But after doing the chores and eating breakfast, Fin, 12, and Rye, 9, don't have to run for the school bus.

Instead, they spend the morning reading Gary Paulsen tales, or they strap on pack baskets they wove themselves, carrying small knives at their belts, and head out to build shelters and forage in the woods.

At a drive-through Starbucks in St. Petersburg, Fla., a chain of generosity included hundreds of customers. Each customer in the chain chose to "pay it forward," paying for the drink of the customer behind her. Weston Phippen of the Tampa Bay Times wrote about the acts of kindness and offers his take.

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

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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We end this hour with a note of appreciation and gratitude. Today is the last day at NPR for Margaret Low Smith. You may not know her name but you hear her work every day.

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Sen. John Walsh of Montana was appointed to his seat in February, and he's preparing to face voters for the first time. The Democrat's bid will likely be complicated by allegations of plagiarism, reported by The New York Times. It seems that in a paper Walsh submitted for his master's degree from the U.S. Army War College, long passages were borrowed without attribution.

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And now a correction. Yesterday we brought you the scene of a crowd in Los Angeles, watching the U.S.-Germany World Cup match and our story included this.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

SHEREEN MARISOL MERAJI, BYLINE: What's your name?

A federal appeals court in Denver struck down Utah's ban on gay marriage Wednesday, paving the way for a U.S. Supreme Court decision on the issue as soon as next year. The ruling by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals was the first by any federal appeals court on the issue to date.

While the ruling struck down the Utah ban, it applies to the other five states in the circuit: New Mexico, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas and Oklahoma.

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

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I'm Audie Cornish and it's time now for your letters. Earlier this week, we ran a two-part series about what happens when older prison inmates return to the outside world. For two years, NPR's Laura Sullivan followed a couple of aging ex-cons as they made their way through life, not sure if they deserve a second chance.

The Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates describes how the legacy of slavery extends to geographical and governmental policies in America and calls for a "collective introspection" on reparations.

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Ryan Beitz feels a need for speed. Specifically, he wants to get...

RYAN BEITZ: All available VHS copies of the hit 1994 action-adventure film "Speed," starring Sandra Bullock, Keanu Reeves and Dennis Hopper.

Even as Boston pays tribute to the victims of the marathon bombing, runners are preparing to run in the race next week. NPR is following the stories of eight of these participants, dubbed the "NPR 8."

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MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. For the last 10 weeks, NPR has been following eight runners who have been preparing for this year's Boston Marathon. We've dubbed our runners the NPR 8 and they've been blogging the highs and lows of their training. Today, we have some excerpts from their audio diaries.

Melissa Block and Audie Cornish read letters from listeners about the demands made on students and student-athletes in college.

The Senate is still struggling to find a way to pay for an extension of unemployment benefits for those out of work for 26 weeks or more. Majority leader Harry Reid agreed to bring up five Democratic and five Republican amendments in hopes to winning enough Republicans over to get to the 60 votes needed for passage.

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We can't let this story go today without one more minute on the key player in this scandal, the George Washington Bridge. According to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, it's the world's busiest motor vehicle bridge. Last year, 102 million vehicles crossed it.

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The suspension bridge spans the Hudson River, and it opened in October 1931. It has exposed supporting steel towers. They were meant to be encased in concrete and granite but the Great Depression got in the way.

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Recently we've heard of some big changes at several news organizations involving some of their most prominent journalists. At the Washington Post, the founder of the popular policy site Wonkblog, Ezra Klein, is weighing a departure. And the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times are both scrambling to set up dedicated news teams to replace journalists who have left in pursuit of more money and independence. NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik joins us from our studios in New York.

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