As the sun rose in Joplin, Missouri, today, a sunrise service was held to commemorate emergency workers, hospital staff, survivors and the 161 killed in a monster tornado a year ago. Yesterday, President Obama delivered the commencement address at Joplin High School and praised the town for its spirit of perseverance and resilience. While much of the rubble has been cleared out and new houses and stores sprout up, scars remain, not all of them visible.
NPR's Neal Conan reads from listener comments about previous show topics including the challenges of facing cancer in your 20s, and the controversial treatment known as reparative therapy that some argue can reverse homosexuality.
Before you sink into your couch, before you flip through channels tonight when you get home, take a minute to think about the guy who made being a couch potato possible:
Back in 1955, Eugene J. Polley invented the "Flash-Matic," or the world's first wireless TV remote control. Back then, you held it like a gun and it acted like a flashlight using visible light to trigger photo cells on the TV to change channels.
Polley, whose engineering career with Zenith spanned 47 years, died on Sunday. He was 96.
There was a "security issue" aboard a US Airways flight from Paris to Charlotte, N.C., earlier today, and the plane was diverted to Maine's Bangor International Airport, where it landed around noon ET.
An online auction of a vial said to contain blood drawn from President Reagan on the day he was shot in 1981 is "a craven act and we will use every legal means to stop its sale or purchase," says a spokesman for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation.
In 1935, George Gershwin brought the script for his folk opera Porgy and Bess to the opera's original cast, which was entirely made up of African-American actors. "[In the original], every other word was N-word this, N-word that," says actor David Alan Grier. "[And] there's a very famous story: Al Jolson really wanted to play Porgy, in blackface."
Whenever I think about Christopher Tilghman's writing — and I have many times since his atmospheric novel, Mason's Retreat, came out more than 15 years ago — I think of critic John Leonard. John, among many other distinctions, was my predecessor as book critic for Fresh Air and, every once in a while before his death in 2008, we'd have occasion to talk or exchange e-mails about books. I remember John sending me a note in 1996, in which he mentioned Mason's Retreat and said of Tilghman, "He's the real deal."
Don Meikle attends an April job fair in Portland, Ore. A new poll shows the economy remains the most important factor for Americans in deciding who to back for president, but with adults split over who would best lead the U.S. economy.
On Monday, Dharun Ravi was sentenced to a 30-day jail term for using a webcam to spy on his roommate Tyler Clementi. Clementi was having an intimate encounter with another man in their dorm room, and a few days later, he committed suicide. Host Michel Martin discusses the sentence with Paul Butler, a law professor and former federal prosecutor.
Massachusetts lawmakers tried and failed to pass legislation that would have required criminal history checks, urine screening and fingerprinting and photographs of all new hires at the state Gaming Commission.
Scott Thompson stepped down as Yahoo's CEO shortly after inaccuracies in his corporate bio surfaced.
Everyone knows it's tough to get a job these days. The task is that much harder if you have any kind of blemish on your past.
The use of background checks to screen potential employees has become a billion-dollar business. More than 90 percent of employers in the U.S. conduct criminal background checks, at least on some potential hires, according to a recent study by the National Consumer Law Center.
People around the world show remarkable similarity in their daily eating habits: meals start off healthy in the morning, but get progressively worse throughout the day – until by nightfall we're deep into junk food territory. Just take a look at these images from mobile startup Massive Health. Focus on the dots over North America in the upper left, which indicate the healthiness (green) or unhealthiness (red) of people's meals at different times of day.
When someone arrives at the hospital who doesn't speak English very well, it's common for workers at the hospital who are fluent in that language —doctors, nurses, even administrative staff — to step in and act as the patient's interpreter.
As sales of existing homes rose 3.4 percent in April from March, prices of those previously owned houses, townhouses, condominiums and co-ops also rose, the National Association of Realtors said this morning.
Unless leaders in Europe act quickly, the financial crisis there could drag down the global economy and kill what appears to be a "fragile, extremely uneven" recovery, the multi-national Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned today.
"That's just crazy," Cincinnati Reds fan Caleb Lloyd said Monday night after he ended up snagging two home runs balls — from consecutive batters — during the Reds' 4-1 win over the visiting Atlanta Braves.
A deal has been agreed to that will facilitate international monitors' effort to investigate whether Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency told reporters in Vienna earlier today.
Two New Jersey men have found a way around high gas prices and traffic jams. The mile long trip from Hoboken across the Hudson River to their Manhattan office takes about a half-hour to paddle. They also get their exercise in for the day.
A mass tax revolt is under way in Ireland, and hundreds of thousands of people have resolved to break the law and refuse to pay a newly-introduced levy on households. The tax is $125 a year, but protesters say it could lead to larger property taxes in the future.
For the second straight year, one of the NBA's greatest players is leaving the playoff party early. Kobe Bryant and his Los Angeles Lakers are out. Last night, they lost their second round series against the young and explosive Oklahoma City Thunder, four games to one. The Thunder's big three - Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden - combined for 70 points in Oklahoma City's 106-90 win. NPR sports correspondent Tom Goldman joins us now on the line.
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A Chinese dissident is settling into life in New York. And Chen Guangcheng is thinking about those he left behind. His story captured worldwide attention when people helped him escape from house arrest to the U.S. embassy in Beijing. Those people remain within the reach of Chinese authorities. NPR's Michele Kelemen has more.
Ever since Syria descended into a brutal armed conflict, there have been fears that the sectarian bloodletting would spill over its borders. That may have come to pass. This past week, clashes in neighboring Lebanon have left more than a dozen people dead. NPR's Kelly McEvers has the story from Beirut.
Economic issues are shaping this year's presidential campaign, as we're hearing in this morning's news. Arthur C. Brooks, of the American Enterprise Institute, says that debate involves more than money. It's a question of which economic policies are morally right.