Business
5:03 am
Thu July 4, 2013

SoftBank Moves Closer To 78 Percent Stake In Sprint

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And the Federal Communications Commission has apparently approved a deal giving the Japanese telecom giant SoftBank a controlling stake in SprintNextel, which is the third-largest wireless operator in the U.S. Experts say SoftBank's industry clout should help Sprint become a more robust competitor. NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports.

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Around the Nation
5:03 am
Thu July 4, 2013

The Declaration: What Does Independence Mean To You?

Kara, Michael, Mikaila and Cameron Milton of Greensboro, N.C., pose for a portrait near the Lincoln Memorial on June 21, after reading the Declaration of Independence for Morning Edition.
Erica Yoon NPR

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

We often celebrate Independence Day with backyard barbecues and fireworks, forgetting the document that started this whole country: the Declaration of Independence.

For the past 20 years Morning Edition has asked NPR hosts and reporters to read the document on the Fourth, as a reminder of our country's history. This year, we decided to ask visitors at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to give it a try.

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Shelley Kofler is managing editor/senior reporter for KERA News. She is an award-winning reporter and television producer who has served as KERA news director and the Austin bureau chief and legislative reporter for North Texas ABC affiliate WFAA-TV. Her expertise on legislative policy issues includes school finance, foster care and transportation; and her stories on the overmedication of foster children captured the attention of state officials who strengthened laws for the use of psychotropic drugs.

Around the Nation
4:42 am
Thu July 4, 2013

History Buffs Commemorate 150 Years Since Gettysburg Battle

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

This week marks the 150th anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg. While it's widely known as the critical turning point of the Civil War, the small Pennsylvania town has seen many other battles since then — over how the historic site should be preserved and remembered.

Race
4:42 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Mexican Roots Bind Families Who Settled Early In Texas

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 5:19 pm

Unlike many places in America where Latinos are a relatively new minority group, Texas Hispanics were there before white Anglos. In some ways, having once been part of Mexico has lessened the tensions between whites and Latinos. But that's not always the case.

(For an extended version of this story, along with a gallery of images, visit KERA's website: Latino Roots Run Deeper In Texas.)

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Law
4:42 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Zimmerman Trial Takes July 4 Off, Case Resumes Friday

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Let's get an update now on the Trayvon Martin murder case being held in Sanford, Florida. The state is expected soon to wrap up its case against George Zimmerman. He's the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot and killed the unarmed teenager. In a week and a half of testimony, prosecutors have painted a picture of Zimmerman as a wannabe cop, someone who profiled Trayvon Martin and then, after he shot Martin, tailored his story to fit Florida's self-defense law.

NPR's Greg Allen reports.

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Author Interviews
3:09 am
Thu July 4, 2013

For 'Star-Spangled Banner,' A Long Road From Song To Anthem

American lawyer Francis Scott Key witnessed the bombardment of Fort McHenry from a boat about 8 miles away.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

All over the country on Thursday, fireworks will light up the sky. In many places, those fireworks will come with a patriotic soundtrack — one that wouldn't be complete without "The Star-Spangled Banner." The song officially became America's national anthem in 1931, but it's been around since the early 19th century.

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Those Who Serve
3:08 am
Thu July 4, 2013

From Front-Line Soldier To Trainer, An Afghan Odyssey

ANA soldiers plot coordinates on a map with the help of their American trainers.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 3:55 pm

This report is part of "Those Who Serve," an occasional series that looks at those who wear the military uniform during a time of war.

It's early afternoon at a small outpost in eastern Afghanistan, and U.S. Army Sgt. Chris Cunningham, with the 10th Mountain Division, heads into a long, dusty tent to teach Afghan soldiers the basics of map reading.

After the sun sets, American soldiers help Afghan soldiers outside the wire. They pop artillery shells containing what's called an illumination round.

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It's All Politics
3:07 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Immigration Debate In Congress Riles Up Texas Republicans

Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas delivers remarks during a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting to work on the immigration legislation in May.
Michael Reynolds EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

All this week, NPR is taking a look at the demographic shifts that could shake up Texas politics in the coming years — and what that could mean for the rest of the country.

Within a decade, Hispanics are bound to become the largest ethnic group in Texas. These often Democratic-leaning Texans could reshape the state's GOP-dominated political landscape.

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Middle East
7:25 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

With Turmoil In Egypt, Obama Urges All To 'Avoid Violence'

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 12:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

President Obama said tonight that he is deeply concerned by the situation in Egypt where the military has suspended the constitution and removed Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi from office. Mr. Obama said the U.S. is monitoring what he called a very fluid situation, and he urged the military to return authority to a democratic government as quickly as possible.

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Space
6:17 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Why You Can't Name New Moons And Planets Anything You Want

This artist's illustration shows Pluto and one of its moons, Charon. A global consortium of astronomers sets the rules for naming things like asteroids and moons throughout the solar system.
Detlev van Ravenswaay Science Source

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 12:38 pm

A dispute over the names of two new moons of Pluto is highlighting a broader battle over who names what in our solar system and beyond. On one side is the International Astronomical Union (IAU), a venerable consortium of astronomers who have set the naming rules for the better part of a century. On the other side, a growing number of astronomers who feel the IAU has unfairly designated itself as the intergalactic naming police.

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Around the Nation
5:48 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Gettysburg Swells As Throngs Mark Civil War's Turning Point

Men dressed as members of the Union infantry demonstrate battalion formations for tourists.
Chris Connelly NPR

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 5:15 pm

About three dozen men dressed in Confederate Army uniforms woke Wednesday morning on historical campgrounds at the iconic Gettysburg battlefield. Soggy from the night's rain, they warmed themselves by the fire and cooked up bacon and potatoes.

The re-enactors joined hundreds of others camping out to show visitors what life may have been like for Civil War soldiers. It's part of a huge display the National Parks Service is putting on to mark the Battle of Gettysburg's 150th anniversary.

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Shots - Health News
4:52 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Scientists Grow A Simple, Human Liver In A Petri Dish

"Liver buds" grow in petri dishes. The rudimentary organs are about 5 mm wide, or half the height of a classic Lego block.
Courtesy of Takanori Takebe/Yokohama City University Graduate School of Medicine

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

Japanese scientists have cracked open a freaky new chapter in the sci-fi-meets-stem-cells era. A group in Yokohama reported it has grown a primitive liver in a petri dish using a person's skin cells.

The organ isn't complete. It's missing a few parts. And it will be years --maybe decades — before the technique reaches clinics.

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Food
4:45 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Just As American As Chorizo

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

Now we continue our discussion on the history and traditions of Independence Day. Sure, there are parades and John Philip Sousa marches, but for many Americans, the grilled hot dogs and hamburgers are as important as the fireworks. Historian Kenneth C. Davis told us earlier that Fourth of July celebrations began in 1776, but the foods we now consider traditional didn't arrive until much later.

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History
4:45 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Celebrating The Expansion Of Our Nation

On July 4, 1803, President Thomas Jefferson announced the signing of the Louisiana Purchase, when the United States bought more than 800,000 square miles of land from the French. On this anniversary, guest host Celeste Headlee highlights some of the forgotten history around the purchase.

Music
4:45 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Does Macklemore Really Thrift Shop?

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 12:13 pm

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are chart-topping rap sensations. In a special rebroadcast, they sat down last year with guest host Celeste Headlee to talk about their latest album 'The Heist' a few months before their fame hit its biggest heights.

Middle East
4:30 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Pakistan's New Prime Minister Gets No 'Honeymoon Period'

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 12:38 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's been four weeks since Pakistan's new Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took the oath of office. In that time, Pakistan has suffered a wave of militant attacks, an economically crippling electricity crisis, and now a deadly drone strike. Many Pakistanis deeply resent U.S. drone attacks against targets in their tribal belt bordering Afghanistan. Recently, there's been a lull in these, but overnight a fresh missile strike killed at least 17 people.

NPR's Philip Reeves reports.

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Around the Nation
4:30 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Federal Budget Cuts Hamper Summer Firefighting Efforts

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 7:13 pm

The wildfire season is expected to intensify and firefighters are facing it with decreasing resources. Federal budget cuts, including the sequester, mean fewer firefighters, less equipment and less spending on prevention.

Around the Nation
4:30 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Arizona Firefighter Remembered For Loving His Job

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 7:25 pm

In Arizona, friends and family of the 19 firefighters killed in the Yarnell Hill Fire are sharing their memories.

2:13 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Ex-BC mayor becomes new Calhoun Circuit Court judge

Kirkham will have to run for election in November 2014 to serve until 2016.
Brian Kirkham, a Battle Creek attorney and former mayor, has been appointed to the Calhoun County Circuit Court. Gov. Rick Snyder made the announcement this morning, according to Chief Circuit Judge James Kingsley. Kirkham will take the seat held by Judge Allen Garbrecht, who retired June 1.
SW Michigan
2:10 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

State Senate fails to vote on Medicaid expansion

Michigan Capitol Building
Credit Melissa Benmark / WKAR

The State Senate adjourned Wednesday without voting on an expansion of Medicaid. Minority Democrats tried to force a vote on the issue but failed.

The Gongwer News Service says only one Republican sided with Democrats in their attempt to get the bill out of committee. The proposal would add 470,000 Michigan residents to the list of those eligible for health coverage under Medicaid.

The State House has approved the idea but it remains stalled in the upper chamber despite strong pressure by Governor Rick Snyder.

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Movie Reviews
1:16 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

'The Lone Ranger': Summer Fun With Manifest Destiny

Armie Hammer stars as the Lone Ranger in a new Disney adaptation.
Film Frame Disney

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 1:42 pm

We're at the point when Johnny Depp's dumbest whims can lead to movies costing $200 million. I imagine Depp lying in a hammock on his private island and saying, "I've always wanted to play Barnabas Collins in Dark Shadows!" and it's done. Then he says, "I've always wanted to do The Lone Ranger — but as Tonto!" and it, too, gets the green light.

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Television
12:54 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Elisabeth Moss: From Naif To Player On TV's 'Mad Men'

Elisabeth Moss says she's ambivalent about the end of Mad Men, which began in 2007.
Christopher Polk Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 1:48 pm

When Mad Men premiered in July 2007, the character of Peggy Olson was introduced to audiences as Don Draper's naive young secretary. In the seasons that have followed, Peggy has slowly become a talented copywriter and Don's protege, meanwhile trying constantly to create a place for herself in the male-dominated world of advertising. Her development has been a centerpiece of the series.

Elisabeth Moss, who plays Peggy, says she has learned about the character and her growth episode by episode, script by script, just like those of us who watch the show on television.

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Politics
12:17 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

The Politics Of Abortion In Texas

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

And now, this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. We're going to go back to law and the politics of abortion, and we want to focus on what's happening in Texas. Early this morning, legislators there revived an effort to restrict access to abortion in that state. The bill would ban most abortions after 20 weeks and it would also place new tough standards on existing clinics.

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Digital Life
12:17 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Martin Luther King's Memory Inspires Teenage Dream

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

And now we continue our special series remembering Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous "I Have a Dream" speech, which will be 50 years old this summer.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.: I have a dream...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN 1: As a kindergarten teacher in a Texas public school, my dream is for our country to begin to value our youngest members of society.

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Music
12:17 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Booker T: My Music Should Be The Soundtrack To Your Life

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 9:01 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

I'm Celeste Headlee and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. If you were to paint a picture of today's contemporary music styles, it might be saturated with synthesizers and samplers that make up a, well, a very contemporary sound, very 21st-century. But there are a few musicians out there achieving the sound of today, but with the instruments of yesterday.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FEEL GOOD")

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8:15 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Audit spells out financial trouble for Benton Township

Report says large spending cuts will be necessary because of loss of personal property tax revenue
BENTON TOWNSHIP - A financial audit of Benton Township for 2012 echoes the warnings trustees have been hearing for months from their own number crunchers.
7:35 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Snyder signs bills paving the way for closing two school districts

Governor says future of Buena Vista and Inskter Schools will be decided in "days, not months"
LANSING - The Buena Vista and Inkster school districts are preparing for the worst - closing before the school year even begins. The districts' demises have been years in the making as the number of students and finances in the two cities have been on a steady decline.
7:29 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Battle Creek tearing down Ashley Dairy Building

City exploring options for site with Hart-Dole-Inouye Federal Center
After years of serving as storage space for the city, the Ashley Dairy building in Battle Creek is being torn down.
Around the Nation
7:25 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Death Valley Is Hot Tourist Destination, Literally

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 9:52 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. This summer, Death Valley is a really hot tourist destination. Record-breaking temperatures are drawing crowds of visitors, where they're frying eggs on sidewalks and posing next to a big, unofficial thermometer showing temperatures as high as 132 degrees. Another draw is the aptly named Furnace Creek. Next Wednesday, it will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the hottest recorded temperature on the planet there, 134 degrees. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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