Somewhere on the path to the White House this year, a powerful set of ideas began to creep into the mainstream debate over which direction the country will take.
These are ideas that not too long ago were written off as marginal, or even worse, a little kooky. They come from Libertarians: free and open markets and extremely limited government. Those ideals are now becoming more mainstream and are influencing the Republican Party.
Philadelphia has its cheesesteak sandwich, Buffalo its wing. Now, Tampa has officially claimed the Cuban sandwich. The Tampa, Florida city council last month passed a resolution designating the Historic Tampa Cuban Sandwich and specifying its ingredients. From member station WUSF in Tampa, Bobby O'Brien found that claim has drawn ridicule from Miami's Cuban community.
(SOUNDBITE OF CUTTING AND PAPER UNWRAPPING)
BOBBY O'BRIEN, BYLINE: An authentic Tampa Cuban starts with the bread.
One hundred years ago this past week, Frank and Rose Snock opened their fish restaurant in Philadelphia. A century later, Snockey's Oyster and Crab House is still serving up deep-fried fish fillets, deviled clams and, of course, oysters.
They've got as many as a dozen varieties. Today, it's the Snock's grandchildren, Ken and Skip, who are running the show. But apparently, not much else has changed. Snockey's is still making the same oyster stew that Rose cooked for 79 years.
North Carolina's African-American voters could be crucial in Tuesday's vote over the proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage and civil unions. Blacks make up a little more than 20 percent of the state's population, and some polls show they strongly favor a ban.
While activists on both sides make phone calls and put up yard signs, many African-Americans are struggling with the issue inside their churches and homes.
President Obama held a pair of campaign rallies today, his first big public events of the 2012 election. He targeted two key battleground states: Ohio and Virginia. NPR's Scott Horsley is traveling with the president and joins weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz to talk about the events.
When the gates fly open at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., on Saturday, all eyes will be on the 20 racehorses that launch themselves into the 138th Kentucky Derby. That's a lot of horses, and a special challenge for the men charged with getting them into the starting gate safely.
Caleb Hayes, 24, has been part of the 12-man start crew for the past six years. The 9-to-5 life isn't for him, he says — he loves his job and likes working the gate side by side with the older guys.
The infield at Churchill Downs can get pretty beer-soaked, as this scene from the 2011 Kentucky Derby proves. But this year, things could get even more crazy: The Derby falls on another of America's favorite "alcoholidays," Cinco de Mayo.
America is not a two-party country — it's a multiparty extravaganza.
We turn every possible pause from work into a party: New Year's Day, the Super Bowl, Mardi Gras, St. Patrick's Day, Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve.
And on Saturday, many Americans will play overtime by reveling in a pair of nationwide celebrations — Cinco de Mayo and the Kentucky Derby. Establishments everywhere will be mashing up Mexico and the Bluegrass State.
In one section of JacobTV's The News, a 2008 Obama campaign speech becomes a hip-hop-inflected aria.
Credit Kristien Kerstens, Jan Boiten / JacobTV
Supersaturated colors and superimposed captions provide counterpoint to the words being spoken by JacobTV's subjects. A section titled "Trust" explodes a chat between talk show host Glenn Beck and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
It was the autumn of 2011, and the Dutch avant-pop composer — real name Jacob ter Veldhuis — had arrived in Rome to discover that the gallery Maxxi Museo had yanked from its exhibition space a "video concerto" he'd created.
The cause? It featured former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi denying charges of corruption, and the museum's curators were worried that was too provocative. They feared political repercussions.
I can't remember exactly when I received the first flower email, but I do remember it was sometime in 2005.
At the time, I had no idea why my old friend Darryl Pitt had sent it, but I didn't think too much about it. A flower. OK. That's nice. But then the flowers continued to arrive day after day after day — and soon a modest digital bouquet turned into a meadow, and that meadow into a hillside of, as always, flowers.