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The Two-Way
7:42 am
Tue March 17, 2015

49ers Linebacker Quits After 1 Season, Citing Safety Concerns

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland (50) is seen here in a 2014 game against the New York Giants. Borland, who had two interceptions in that game, has announced that he is retiring from the NFL after his rookie season.
Chris Szagola CSM /LANDOV

Concerns over possible brain injuries have prompted Chris Borland to end his NFL career after one season in which he emerged as a star on the San Franciso 49ers' vaunted defense. Borland, 24, said, "I just honestly want to do what's best for my health."

Saying that he had consulted with other players, medical experts, and his family, Borland stated, "From what I've researched and what I've experienced, I don't think it's worth the risk."

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The Two-Way
6:57 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Israel's Election: Netanyahu Seeks 4th Term

An Israeli woman votes with her daughter at a polling station in the coastal city of Haifa on Tuesday. Israel faces an unpredictable election to determine whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will remain in power.
Ahmad Gharabli AFP/Getty Images

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Likud party face challenges from the left and right in today's election in Israel. Netanyahu's party has slipped in recent voter surveys, with approaches to a potential Palestinian state and the economy emerging as the top issues.

Another fault line opened up over the prime minister's controversial visit and speech to the U.S. Congress, a trip that deepened tensions with the White House. Netanyahu's opponents seized on the opportunity to say they would work to strengthen ties with America's leaders to ensure their country's security.

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NPR Ed
6:03 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Q&A: Raising Kids Who Want To Read

There's a big difference between teaching kids to read and teaching them to love reading.
LA Johnson/NPR

In his new book, Raising Kids Who Read, Daniel Willingham wants to be clear: There's a big difference between teaching kids to read and teaching them to love reading.

And Willingham, a parent himself, doesn't champion reading for the obvious reasons — not because research suggests that kids who read for pleasure do better in school and in life.

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Strange News
4:56 am
Tue March 17, 2015

It's Hard Getting Work When The Government Says You're Dead

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Games & Humor
4:34 am
Tue March 17, 2015

She's Behind The Billy: Hide And Seek At Ikea

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Latin America
4:34 am
Tue March 17, 2015

In Mexico, A Fight Over Press Freedom

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Middle East
4:34 am
Tue March 17, 2015

A History Of West Bank Settlements

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

World
4:34 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Four Tropical Cyclones At Once: How Unusual Is That?

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 6:00 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

It's All Politics
3:32 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Why Federal Budgets Aren't What You Think They Are

For all the attention the president's and Congress' budget proposals receive, they don't actually fund any program or levy any taxes. They're more about politics.
Jon Elswick AP

As Republican leaders in the House and Senate unveil their proposed budgets this week, here is the most important thing to remember about the federal budget: It isn't really a budget.

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National Security
2:22 am
Tue March 17, 2015

In Intense Desert Training, Dozens Of Women Fight For Place On Front Lines

U.S. Army Cpl. Jacqueline Beachum carries a 65-pound TOW missile several yards before loading the dummy missile into the launcher of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle in February 2014 during a physical demands study in Ft. Stewart, Ga. Marine training this month in Twentynine Palms, Calif., is continuing research into whether women can serve in U.S. infantry, armor and artillery units.
Stephen B. Morton AP

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 6:33 am

In the dry and craggy hills of California's Mojave Desert, Capt. Ray Kaster tries to shout over the din of a machine gun to be heard by Alpha Company, the unit of Marines he's working with during a month of rigorous instruction at Twentynine Palms training center.

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Parallels
2:21 am
Tue March 17, 2015

A New Community Rises In The West Bank ... And It's Not Israeli

A Palestinian family leaves the visitors center at Rawabi.
Tanya Habjouqa for NPR

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 4:34 am

Palestinian investor Bashar Masri is building an entirely new city in the West Bank. It's a huge investment, with 5,000 new homes for tens of thousands of families. And in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it's also a political statement.

As we approached this new city of Rawabi, north of Ramallah, we saw a row of high-rise apartment buildings topped by construction cranes. Scaffolding surrounds the minaret of an incomplete mosque. Nobody has moved in yet.

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Science
2:17 am
Tue March 17, 2015

Are Humans Really Headed To Mars Anytime Soon?

Mars, anyone? Six researchers from the Mars Society sport their best space duds during this 2014 simulation of the conditions explorers of the red planet might face. (From left) Ian Silversides, Anastasiya Stepanova, Alexandre Mangeot and Claude-Michel Laroche.
Micke Sebastien Paris Match via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 7:46 am

With recent news headlines proclaiming that dozens of people have been selected as finalists for a Martian astronaut corps, it might seem like a trip to this alien world might finally be close at hand.

But let's have a little reality check — what are the chances that we really will see people on the red planet in the next couple of decades?

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World
6:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Cyclone Created Almost 'Complete' Destruction In Vanuatu

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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It's All Politics
6:03 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Obama, 2016 Contenders Deal With Changing Attitudes On Marijuana

Polls show changing American opinion on marijuana, and it's having an effect on politics.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 17, 2015 5:21 am

The divide between Republicans and Democrats on pot politics is narrowing, President Barack Obama said in an interview Monday.

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Music
5:33 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

In South Africa, Soulful Music Delivers Serious Messages

The Muffinz's newest album, Do What You Love, tackles heavy issues such as politics, race and education.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

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All Tech Considered
5:33 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

What Cockroaches With Backpacks Can Do. Ah-mazing

An attempt to build the perfect cockroach cyborg.
Carlos Sanchez, Ph.D. student of Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M University

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

Cockroaches are widely despised. They're attracted to filth. They frighten people, even give them nightmares.

But for a team of scientists at Texas A&M University, the roach is a hero: the first animal that humans might successfully transform into a robot, a hybrid of insect and machine that we can send anywhere, to be our eyes and ears.

The Perfect Roach

Professor Hong Liang opens the door to a small laboratory with hundreds, maybe thousands, of cockroaches. It's not for the faint of heart.

"So they're all here," she whispers.

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Shots - Health News
5:33 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Clues To Autism, Schizophrenia Emerge From Cerebellum Research

Jonathan Keleher talks with a colleague, Rafael Wainhaus, at work. Keleher was born without a cerebellum, but his brain has developed work-arounds for solving problems of balance and abstract thought.
Ellen Webber for NPR

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

A new understanding of the brain's cerebellum could lead to new treatments for people with problems caused by some strokes, autism and even schizophrenia.

That's because there's growing evidence that symptoms ranging from difficulty with abstract thinking to emotional instability to psychosis all have links to the cerebellum, says Jeremy Schmahmann, a professor of neurology at Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital.

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Law
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Officers Recall Night Of Battle With Boston Marathon Bombing Suspects

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Fine Art
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

In Detroit's Rivera And Kahlo Exhibit, A Portrait Of A Resilient City

A detail from the north wall of Diego Rivera's Detroit Industry murals shows workers on the automobile assembly line. After Detroit declared bankruptcy, the murals were at risk of being sold. Click here for a larger view.
Detroit Institute of Arts

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

This weekend, visitors to the Detroit Institute of Arts buzzed with excitement over a new exhibit — it was a big moment for the once-troubled museum. The DIA spent much of the last two years under threat as its owner, the city of Detroit, looked for ways to emerge from bankruptcy.

Finally, in November, a "grand bargain" was struck. Foundations, private donors and the state of Michigan together raised more than $800 million to help rescue public employee pensions. In return, ownership of the DIA was transferred to a trust — thereby securing its future.

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NPR Ed
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Why Many Smart, Low-Income Students Don't Apply To Elite Schools

Kristen Hannah Perez, a low-income, high-achieving student from Celina, Texas, plans to attend Dartmouth€ College next fall.
Shereen Meraji/NPR

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

Right now, high school seniors across the country are trying hard not to think about what is — or isn't — coming in the mail.

They're anxiously awaiting acceptance letters (or the opposite) from their top-choice colleges and universities. But this story isn't about them. It's about a big group of seniors who could get into great schools but don't apply: high-achieving students from low-income families who live outside of America's big cities.

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It's All Politics
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Missed Abortion Language Tangles Senate's Trafficking Bill

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he won't let the chamber vote on Loretta Lynch — the nominee to become the next attorney general — until the Senate passes its human trafficking bill.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

A once widely supported Senate bill that would create a fund for human trafficking victims has hit a snag over language Democrats say they didn't know was in the bill — a provision that would bar funds collected under the measure from being used to pay for abortions. And the impasse over that language now threatens to delay other Senate business, like confirming a new attorney general.

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U.S.
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

California Judges Must Cut Ties With The Boy Scouts

The California Supreme Court ban prohibits state judges from belonging to nonprofit youth organizations that practice discrimination. That includes Boy Scouts, which has restricted gay troop leaders.
David Manning Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

California has banned state court judges from belonging to the Boy Scouts. The move extends an earlier ban on judges belonging to groups that discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation, but had an exemption for youth groups. Judges have one year to sever their ties with the Boy Scouts.

Judges are already banned from joining lots of groups that other people can belong to. For example, they can't be members of country clubs that don't admit Jews or women.

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U.S.
4:36 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

FEMA's Appeals Process Favored Insurance Companies Almost Every Time

Doug Quinn's ranch house in Toms River, N.J., was heavily damaged by flooding during Hurricane Sandy. His insurance company gave him half the value of his home and when he appealed, FEMA sided with the insurance company.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 7:01 pm

FEMA has taken the unprecedented step of reopening all Superstorm Sandy flood claims because thousands of homeowners said insurance companies intentionally lowballed damage estimates.

Similar allegations surfaced in 2004 after Hurricane Isabel struck the mid-Atlantic. To answer critics then, FEMA formalized an appeals process.

That appeals process has gone against Sandy victims almost every time, statistics show.

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The Two-Way
4:30 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Gunfire, Bombs And An Arrest: Boston Police Detail Tsarnaev's Capture For Court

A still image from surveillance video that was entered as evidence shows Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in 2013, in a handout photo provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Boston. Tsarnaev, 21, is accused of killing three people and injuring 264 with a pair of homemade bombs at the race's crowded finish, as well as fatally shooting a police officer three days later.
Handout Photo Reuters /Landov

Police officers testifying at the trial of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev described a gunbattle and powerful explosions Monday, recalling the death of Tsarnaev's older brother and the process that ended an intense manhunt for the pair.

Tsarnaev's attorneys have admitted that he was involved in the deadly bombing and the events that followed. But they also insist he was led into the operation by his older brother, and they say he doesn't deserve the death penalty.

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It's All Politics
4:08 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

War Criminals Next Door: Immigration Division Brings Violators To Justice

Gen. Carlos Eugenio Vides Casanova, shown in undated photo, is alleged to have presided over human rights violations in that country, including the murders of four Americans in 1980.
AP

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 5:01 pm

An appeals panel in Florida has upheld a deportation order against a former defense minister of El Salvador, who is alleged to have presided over human rights violations in that country, including the murders of four American churchwomen in 1980. Gen. Carlos Eugenio Vides Casanova was allowed to retire in the U.S. in 1989. Now, a little known unit of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is trying to expel him as well as others charged with human rights abuses.

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It's All Politics
4:05 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

I'm Mike Huckabee, And I Approve This ... Infomercial?

In an infomercial for Barton Publishing's Diabetes Solution Kit Huckabee says he knows diabetes can be reversed "because I did it and today, you can too."
Getty Images

Mike Huckabee has always had the reputation as a candidate who does things outside the box.

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The Two-Way
3:35 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Robert Durst Charged With Murder, May Face Death Penalty

This booking photo provided by the Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office shows Robert Durst after his arrest Saturday in New Orleans on an extradition warrant to Los Angeles. Durst's return to LA has been delayed by authorities in New Orleans.
Uncredited AP

Originally published on Mon March 16, 2015 8:00 pm

Updated at 8:11 p.m. ET

The Los Angeles County District Attorney's office has charged Robert Durst with one count of first-degree murder in the 2000 death of Susan Berman. A statement announcing the charge also said that Durst is being held without bail in New Orleans, after being arrested Saturday by FBI agents. The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office says the charge against Durst makes him eligible for the death penalty. The case is still under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department.

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NPR Story
3:06 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Combating Bait And Switch In The Seafood Industry

The plan to stop seafood fraud will create a system to detect black market fishing and seafood fraud, and a system to track seafood from its harvest, all the way to U.S. port for market. (Bill Dickinson/Flickr)

Fish is a slippery business. Managing and policing the seafood industry has proved challenging through the years with reports of over-fishing, controversies about fish farming, and issues of oceanic pollution. Now, we can add seafood fraud to that list.

On Sunday, a task force convened by the Obama administration released an action plan to stop seafood fraud.

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NPR Story
3:06 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

States Scramble To Comply With Fed ID Cards

Increased enforcement of the federal REAL ID Act means Idaho driver's licenses may soon be unacceptable as ID at airports. (Idaho Transportation Department)

If you have a driver’s license you probably use it for more than driving: you verify your credit card, you prove your age if you want to buy a beer, you prove your identity to get on a plane.

But what if you showed your driver’s license and it was no good?

That’s starting to happen to people in a number of states that have yet to fully comply with the federal government’s REAL ID Act.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Jessica Robinson reports from Idaho.

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NPR Story
3:06 pm
Mon March 16, 2015

Netanyahu Trailing Slightly Before Israel’s Election Tomorrow

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trailing ever so slightly behind his opponents in the Labor Party, just before tomorrow’s parliamentary election. That’s according to the latest and last poll before voters cast their ballots tomorrow.

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