National

Remembrances
4:34 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Actor James Gandolfini Dies Suddenly While On Vacation

Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 7:25 am

The 51-year-old actor died on Wednesday in Rome. Reports attribute his death to a heart attack. Gandolfini had been a character actor for years before he was given a chance to read for Tony Soprano in a new series about a New Jersey mob boss HBO was producing in the late 90s.

Movies
3:00 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Translated Into Navajo, Star Wars Will Be

Originally published on Fri June 21, 2013 12:44 pm

When Dave Nezzie met his future wife, Amanda, they quickly fell in love over a galaxy far, far away.

"I think that was one of the first things that bonded Dave and I together, was our love for Star Wars," says Amanda Nezzie. "Our children have also caught the Star Wars bug."

The family lives in Albuquerque, N.M., and one of the biggest struggles they've had living off the reservation is teaching Dave's native Navajo language to their kids.

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All Tech Considered
2:57 am
Thu June 20, 2013

In More Cities, A Camera On Every Corner, Park And Sidewalk

Micaela Torres and 2-year-old Jakai Johnson swing underneath a surveillance camera at Miwok Park in Elk Grove, Calif. The city's police department collects more than 100 video feeds from across the city.
Steve Henn NPR

Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 7:07 am

This report is part of the series NPR Cities: Urban Life In The 21st Century.

Surveillance cameras, and the sophisticated software packages that go with them, have become big business. Many small- and medium-sized cities across American are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on cameras and software to watch their residents.

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The Two-Way
6:11 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

A Day After Making List, One Of FBI's Most Wanted Caught

Just a day after being added to the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list, a former University of Southern California professor was arrested in the Mexican beach resort of Playa del Carmen.

Reporting for our Newscast unit, NPR's Carrie Kahn says 64-year-old Walter Lee Williams had been pursued by the FBI since 2011.

She says the indictment against Williams alleges he used his position as a professor of gender and sexuality studies to travel internationally and prey on underage boys.

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Around the Nation
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

A Dry Reservation Clashes With Its Liquor Store Neighbors

Oglala Lakota activist Debra White Plume (left), tribal president Bryan Brewer (center) and other protesters create a blockade to prevent trucks from delivering beer to a liquor store in Whiteclay, Neb. The town, which borders the Pine Ridge Reservation, has been the site of recurring protests over alcohol.
Charles Michael Ray/SDPB

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

At the Pine Ridge Reservation just outside the town of Whiteclay, Neb., an upside-down American flag flies on a wooden pole next to a teepee. About 60 people gathered here Monday to protest as beer truck drivers unloaded cases into a Whiteclay liquor store a few hundred yards away.

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Around the Nation
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

To Rebuild NYC's Beaches, A Native Plant Savings And Loan

Heather Liljengren, a field taxonomist with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, examines the seed pods of the Virginia spiderwort at Oakwood Beach, Staten Island. Liljengren collects seeds from across the region for a seed bank of native plants.
Andrea Hsu NPR

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Across the New York region, people are still working to rebuild homes and businesses after the havoc wrought by Hurricane Sandy. But the storm also devastated the dunes and native flora of New York's beaches.

When the city replants grasses on those dunes, it will be able to draw on seeds from precisely the grasses that used to thrive there. That's because of a very special kind of bank: a seed bank run by the Greenbelt Native Plant Center on Staten Island.

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Around the Nation
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Democratic Bill Would Limit Government's Digital Surveillance

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Robert Siegel talks to Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) about the legislation he is co-sponsoring with Sen. Ron Wyden, to limit the federal government's ability to collect data on Americans without links to terrorism or espionage.

Around the Nation
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Detroit Labor Groups Butt Heads With Bondholders Over City's Debt

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The financial future of Detroit lies in the hand of a state-appointed emergency manager, Kevyn Orr. He's trying to wring concessions out of the city's creditors before deciding whether to file for bankruptcy on the city's behalf. Orr is proposing shared sacrifice among all creditor groups. That means some will get back just pennies on the dollar. And all of the creditors are fighting each other for those pennies as Michigan Radio's Sarah Cwiek reports.

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Around the Nation
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Amid Violence, Chicagoan Fights For Right To Bear Arms

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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

This past weekend in Chicago was a violent one, the bloodiest of the year so far. Nearly 50 people were shot. Nine of them died. The level of gun violence in some Chicago neighborhoods has put the city at the center of the national debate about gun control. Many Chicagoans favor strict gun laws. And then there's 79-year-old Otis McDonald. NPR's David Schaper introduces us to the man who fought the city's ban on handguns and won.

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Fitness & Nutrition
5:16 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

AMA Officially Recognizes Obesity As A Disease

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Obesity has long been recognized as a public health problem. But this week, the American Medical Association, the nation's largest professional organization of physicians, has taken the step of officially recognizing obesity as a disease.

NPR's Allison Aubrey joins us now to talk about what this means. Hi, Alison.

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: Hi there, Robert.

SIEGEL: What's the significance of declaring obesity a disease?

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Shots - Health News
4:36 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Infections From Contaminated Injections Can Lurk Undetected

Spinal MRIs similar to these found infections that many patients hadn't realized they had.
Stefano Raffini iStockphoto.com

People who think they didn't get sick from a nationwide meningitis outbreak caused by contaminated steroid injections used to treat back pain may want to think again.

Doctors at hospitals in Michigan did MRI scans of people who had been given tainted injections but didn't report symptoms of meningitis afterwards.

About 20 percent of the 172 people tested had suspicious-looking MRIs, and 17 ended up needing surgery to treat fungal infections in or around the spine.

The patients had gotten steroid injections about three months before the MRI, in mid to late 2012.

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Around the Nation
4:02 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

After A Marine's Suicide, A Family Recalls Missed Red Flags

Anna holds the flag that was draped over Nick's coffin at his memorial service. She and her husband, Michael, have created a shrine to Nick in their dining room.
Courtesy of Long Haul Productions

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

Last year, more U.S. service members took their own lives than died in combat. And despite the drawdown of troops from Afghanistan, the pullout in Iraq, and hundreds of new programs designed to help troubled servicemen and women, the number of suicides continues to rise.

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Shots - Health News
3:46 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Vaccine Against HPV Has Cut Infections In Teenage Girls

A 13-year-old girl gets an HPV vaccination from Judith Schaechter, a pediatrician at the University of Miami, in 2011.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 19, 2013 10:18 pm

A vaccine against human papillomavirus — the most common sexually transmitted infection and the cause of almost all cervical cancer — is dramatically reducing the prevalence of HPV in teenage girls.

The first vaccine against HPV, Merck's Gardasil, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2006. Cerverix, from GlaxoSmithKline, was approved in 2009.

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Monkey See
3:15 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

From Classic Toys To New Twists, Kids Go Back To Blocks

Legos and other interlocking toys are only one kind of blocks that remain popular with kids.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 1:39 pm

I visited Toy Fair in New York City hunting for ideas for our summer series about kids' culture. One of the big takeaways was the increasing popularity of construction games such as Legos. Sales shot up nearly 20 percent last year. Now, it seems, every major toy manufacturer is scrambling to add new games geared toward kids building things.

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Around the Nation
3:07 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

'The Watchers' Have Had Their Eyes On Us For Years

The National Security Agency (NSA) headquarters at Fort Meade, Md.
Saul Loeb Getty Images

The revelations about secret National Security Agency programs, leaked by Edward Snowden earlier this month, have stirred great controversy, but this type of surveillance is not entirely new, according to journalist Shane Harris.

In his 2010 book, The Watchers: The Rise of America's Surveillance State, Harris traced the evolution of these surveillance programs in the U.S.

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