Politics
6:38 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Obama Criticizes Congress After Background Check Bill Fails

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 8:37 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From Boston now to the White House, where President Obama reacted angrily tonight to the failure of an effort in the Senate to expand background checks for gun purchases. The amendment, proposed by Democrat Joe Manchin and Republican Pat Toomey, got only 54 votes - six short of the necessary 60. President Obama spoke in the White House Rose Garden. He called this a pretty shameful day for Washington.

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Local Music
6:09 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Fortune, love, springtime: Kimberly Dunn Adams on Carmina Burana

Credit Kalamazoo Symphony

Last September Dr. Kimberly Dunn Adams, director of choral activities at Western Michigan University, began, step by step, to lead a chorus of over 100 singers through the intricacies of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana. A mid-20th century classic, it's a setting of of Latin and medieval German poetry on life, fate, food, and love with an unforgettable opening, 'O Fortuna,' adopted by movies and television soundtracks to evoke awe and power. 

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It's All Politics
5:37 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Immigration Proves A 'Rubik's Cube' For Many Republicans

Protesters demonstrate in front of the U.S. Capitol on April 10.
Allison Shelley Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 8:37 pm

While an immigration overhaul has drawn support from church groups, business, labor and even former opponents, there's still deep opposition — mostly centered in the Republican Party.

The last time a president tried to pass a comprehensive immigration overhaul was in 2007, and George W. Bush's fellow Republicans in Congress killed his bill. Republican strategist Kevin Madden says a lot has changed since then — including the way the Republican Party is dealing with its own internal divisions.

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Education
5:07 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

More Than 50 Years Of Putting Kids' Creativity To The Test

E. Paul Torrance, shown here in the mid-'80s, spent most of his career studying and encouraging students' creativity.
Courtesy University of Georgia

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 5:30 pm

This is the second in a three-part series about the intersection of education and the arts.

Let's start with a question from a standardized test: "How would the world be different if we all had a third eye in the back of our heads?"

It's not a typical standardized question, but as part of the Next Generation Creativity Survey, it's used to help measure creativity a bit like an IQ test measures intelligence. And it's not the only creativity test out there.

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NPR Story
5:06 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Large Police Presence Surrounds Margaret Thatcher's Funeral

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 10:22 pm

Margaret Thatcher was laid to rest in a funeral attended by dignitaries from around the globe as well as Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip on Wednesday. It's the first funeral of a British politician attended by the Queen since Sir Winston Churchill's in 1965.

4:45 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

McDonalds sued for false advertising by Detroit Muslim group

Two McDonalds franchises in the Detroit area advertised halal foods from September 2005 to January of this year. But Dearborn resident Ahmed Ahmed found out the chicken sandwich he bought was not halal—or cooked according to Islamic law.
DETROIT -- A judge is expected to finalize Wednesday a $700,000 settlement between McDonald's Corp. and members of Michigan's Muslim community over claims a suburban Detroit restaurant falsely advertised its food as prepared according to Islamic law.
Movie Reviews
3:26 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Digging Into Ricky Jay's 'Deceptive' Card Tricks

Veteran magician Ricky Jay reveals much about himself in a new documentary on his life of deception. His card-trick techniques? That may be another story.
Kino Lorber

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 8:37 pm

When people talk about movie magic, they rarely mean card tricks. They're talking about digital wizardry and special effects.

But a new documentary called Deceptive Practice: The Mysteries and Mentors of Ricky Jay is all about card tricks — and a man who has devoted his life to them.

Card artist Ricky Jay keeps up a constant stream of chatter in his act onstage — everything from gambling poems to stories about The Great Cardini — and it's all very entertaining, but the patter is designed to distract you from what he's doing.

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Wisdom Watch
2:58 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Jazz Great Hugh Masekela, Fresh Because He's Fascinated

Mark Shoul Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 7:58 pm

"I was a good boy," South African jazz legend Hugh Masekela assures NPR's Michel Martin. But still, he says, "as a kid, I was whipped on a slow day at least three times."

Eventually, Masekela told his chaplain, "If I can get a trumpet, Father, I won't bother anybody."

His wish came true.

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Sports
2:25 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

What Spectators Add To The Marathon Experience

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

You know, many of those injured and all three of the people who were killed at the scene of the Boston Marathon were there to cheer on the runners. They weren't running. Running is usually a fairly solitary sport, but a marathon is a unique moment when these athletes run alongside others, for one thing, and they're cheered on by sometimes thousands of spectators. Runners rely on those familiar faces and their cheerful signs to motivate them through all 26.2 miles.

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National Security
2:20 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Public Safety: The Measures Taken To Keep Crowds Safe

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Celeste Headlee. Neal Conan is away. The attacks on the Boston Marathon have had a ripple effect around the world. Organizers of the London Marathon are working with local police to increase security measures there. And organizers of smaller marathons, like the Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon, are meeting to discuss how to best protect runners and spectators in the wake of the Boston tragedy. We'll speak to the emergency coordinator of that marathon in just a moment.

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Around the Nation
2:15 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

'The Hell Of American Day Care': Expensive And 'Mediocre'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:49 pm

In his cover story for the April 29 issue of The New Republic, "The Hell of American Day Care," Jonathan Cohn writes that "trusting your child with someone else is one of the hardest things a parent has to do — and in the U.S., it's harder still, because American day care is a mess. And about 40 percent of children under 5 spend at least part of their week in the care of somebody other than a parent."

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Politics
2:10 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Governing During Threats To National Security

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Celeste Headlee, in Washington. It's Wednesday, and it's time for the Political Junkie.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)

PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.

VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?

SENATOR BARRY GOLDWATER: Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.

SENATOR LLOYD BENTSEN: Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy.

PRESIDENT RICHARD NIXON: You don't have Nixon to kick around anymore.

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1:08 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Portage School Board plans visit from finalist for Superintendent

Brighton School Board is considering offering a pay raise to Superintendent Greg Gray as he interviews for job in Portage
  • Source: Mlive
  • | Via: Kalamazoo Gazette
Greg Gray PORTAGE, MI -- Brighton Area Schools Superintendent Greg Gray, the only finalist in the search for a new superintendent for Portage Public Schools, will have a public interview with the Portage school board at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Politics
12:09 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Asa Hutchinson: Gitmo, Guns, And Governorship Plans

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 4:03 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Later in the program we will speak with a man for whom art and politics were intertwined. South African musical great Hugh Masekela will be with us. He talks about his years in exile and how he stays creative after decades of performing. That's later.

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National Security
12:07 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Guantanamo Bay, One Piece Of Torturous Puzzle?

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 4:03 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, leading Republicans have been making news lately talking about outreach to African-Americans, Latinos, and LGBT voters, but what about women? They've also been trending Democrat for decades. We're going to speak with a diverse group of women writers and commentators about this. That's later in the program.

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Politics
12:01 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

GOP Wooing Women & Minorities

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 4:03 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now we head into the Beauty Shop. That's where we get a fresh cut on hot topics with our panel of women journalists, commentators, bloggers and activists.

Even though the next presidential election is several years away, the major political parties are already thinking about how to reach new voters. Republicans in particular have been in the news, both because of their poor showing with minorities last year and their efforts to address that by bringing more diverse perspectives and candidates to the Republican Party.

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Music Reviews
11:52 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Brad Paisley's 'Wheelhouse' Of Good Songs — And Intentions

Brad Paisley's new album is titled Wheelhouse.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:15 pm

Brad Paisley's Wheelhouse is yet another very good album from a singer, songwriter and guitarist who's made a bunch of them in a row. It features a slew of shrewd songs about finding pleasure and comfort in a frequently unpleasant, uncomfortable world. The music includes a bone-cracking song about domestic violence written from a woman's point of view, one that praises Christian values from the perspective of a jealous skeptic, and one that samples the great Roger Miller as deftly as any hip-hop production.

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Interviews
11:07 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Marathoner Amby Burfoot: 'Every Mile Out There Is A Gift'

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:15 pm

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. When the bombs went off Monday, my guest Amby Burfoot was seven-tenths of a mile from the finish line. Burfoot has a special place in the history of the Boston Marathon - he was the winner 45 years ago in 1968. To celebrate the anniversary of his win every five years he runs the Boston Marathon again. Many runners have turned to Burfoot for advice over the years.

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7:41 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Proposal would give schools flexibility for making up snow days

Districts are currently allowed six snow days. Some districts in northern Michigan had to take up to 12 this winter
One northern Michigan lawmaker wants local school districts to add extra hours to the school day instead of extending the academic year so excessive "snow days" don't cause some districts to come up short on state-mandated class time.
7:29 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Michigan lawmakers consider tying fuel taxes to wholesale price of gas, diesel

Governor Snyder has called for $1.2-billion to improve Michigan's roads and bridges
Lansing - The state Treasury Department could adjust the gas tax rate based on the average price of wholesale gasoline under legislation seeking to raise $1.5 billion more annually for road improvements.
Around the Nation
7:07 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Napster Billionaire Spends Big On Upcoming Wedding

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:46 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep, with good luck to Sean Parker and his bride-to-be. She's a singer; he's a Facebook billionaire and founder of Napster. Mr. Parker committed $10 million to their wedding. He paid for waterfalls, bridges and ancient ruins created for the occasion. Guests will wear outfits created by the costume designer from "Lord of the Rings."

Europe
7:02 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Resignation Letter Is Good Enough To Eat

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:46 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

Chris Holmes worked at a London airport, but his true love was always making cakes. So Holmes decided to quit his job to run his own bake shop, which brings us to his resignation letter. He wrote it on a cake with icing. He said he wanted more time with his family. He wished his colleagues well. It took two hours, more time than he had ever spent on a birthday message or anniversary wish. A photo of his work went viral, publicity that he really felt was icing on the cake.

6:20 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Large turnout for Battle Creek workshop on illegal guns

Kalamazoo Mayor Bobby Hopewell is one of the 13 mayors of Michigan cities that have joined coalition
It was standing room only at City Hall as more than 100 people gathered to sound off on a national gun violence coalition that Battle Creek has been asked to join. City commissioners held a workshop Tuesday to discuss whether to join Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a network of more than 900 cities.

Shereen Marisol Meraji tries to find the humor and humanity in reporting on race for the NPR Code Switch team.

Her stories center on the real people affected by the issues, not just experts and academics studying them. Those stories include a look at why a historically black college in West Virginia is 90 percent white, to a profile of the most powerful and most difficult-to-target consumer group in America: Latinas.

Prior to her time with Code Switch, Meraji worked for the national business and economics radio program Marketplace, from American Public Media. There, she covered stories about the growing wealth gap and poverty in the United States.

National Security
4:35 am
Wed April 17, 2013

FBI Encourages Public To Turn Over What They May Know

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:46 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning.

The special agent in charge of the FBI Boston office hopes someone somewhere heard something that will point to a suspect in the Boston Marathon attack.

(SOUNDBITE OF STATEMENT)

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National Security
4:35 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Adding Security Along Marathons Would Be Herculean Task

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:46 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Now, the twin bombings at the Boston Marathon struck at a very special type of sporting event. Marathons have been called the most democratic of sports, with the fewest physical barriers between athlete and spectator.

NPR's Mike Pesca examines whether the attack could permanently damage that accessibility.

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Code Switch
4:35 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Seeking Oakland's Soul In The 'New Oakland'

A DJ plays for a crowded street at Oakland's Art Murmur celebration in February.
David Kashevaroff

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 8:17 pm

Oakland, Calif., was once a hub of African-American culture on the West Coast.

In the 1940s and '50s, Oakland was home to an entertainment corridor nicknamed The Harlem of the West. In the '60s, the city gave birth to the Black Panther Party. By the '80s, black folks made up nearly half of Oakland's population.

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Animals
2:56 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Lionfish Attacking Atlantic Ocean Like A Living Oil Spill

Lionfish, like this one spotted in the Bahamas, are a nonnative predatory fish that can decimate native fish populations.
Cammy Clark MCT/Landov

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 1:45 pm

A gluttonous predator is power-eating its way through reefs from New York to Venezuela. It's the lionfish.

And although researchers are coming up with new ways to protect some reefs from the flamboyant maroon-striped fish, they have no hope of stopping its unparalleled invasion.

Lad Akins has scuba dived in the vibrant reefs of the Bahamas for many years. But when he returned a couple years ago, he saw almost no fish smaller than his hand.

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Sweetness And Light
2:55 am
Wed April 17, 2013

The Pitch For More No. 42s

Jackie Robinson during spring training at Vero Beach, Fla., in March 1956. It would be Robinson's 10th and last year with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
AP

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:46 pm

Yet another movie about Jackie Robinson arrived as baseball held its annual commemorative celebration of No. 42, but officials of the game are fretting over the fact that only 8 1/2 percent of current major leaguers are black.

Given that African-Americans only constitute about 13 percent of the U.S. population, and that rarely do we have any industry or school system or community population that correlates exactly to the whole country's racial or ethnic makeup, baseball's somewhat smaller black cohort hardly seems like an issue to agonize over.

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Kalamazoo River Oil Spill
9:28 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

InsideClimate News wins Pulitzer for story on Kalamazoo River oil spill

Kalamazoo River - file photo
Credit WMUK

An online news organization that covers the environment related issues has won a Pulitzer Prize for its story of oil pipeline safety. Their story included a look at the 2010 oil spill on the Kalamazoo River. 

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