It's All Politics
5:38 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Newtown Residents: Senate Gun Votes 'A Slap In The Face'

Neil Heslin, father of 6-year-old Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victim Jesse Lewis, holds a picture of the two of them as he testifies during a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee in February.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 5:47 pm

Following the Senate's rejection Wednesday of a range of gun control measures, including universal background checks, many in Newtown, Conn., are reacting with surprise and disappointment. The town is still stricken with grief from the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December that took the lives of 20 students and six adults.

On Thursday morning, Mike Cragin stopped by the Dunkin' Donuts in Newtown with his bulldog, Truman.

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It's All Politics
5:20 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Historically Speaking, No Surprise In Senate Gun Control Vote

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., speaks after losing a vote on broader background checks for gun buyers, Wednesday at the Capitol.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 5:54 pm

If it seems perplexing why an idea that has broad support nationally could fail to pass the U.S. Senate, here's an important reminder: The Senate is not a democratic institution.

It never has been, and it was never designed to be. Rather, it was structured to give small or sparsely populated states the ability to stop the majority's will. And on Wednesday, that's how it worked out, as the Senate failed to reach a 60-vote threshold to support new background checks on gun purchases.

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The Two-Way
4:49 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Listen: Yo-Yo Ma Plays Bach's 'Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor'

Musician Yo-Yo Ma performs during "Healing Our City: An Interfaith Service" dedicated to those who were gravely wounded or killed in the Boston Marathon bombing.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 10:26 pm

Earlier today, President Obama led the city of Boston at an interfaith service at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston.

It was an emotional tribute in which the President Obama vowed that Boston would finish the race.

The service was punctuated by a performance from Yo-Yo Ma, who chose the sarabande Bach's Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor. It was haunting and beautiful, a piece that Ma also played following Sept. 11.

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World Cafe
4:35 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Latin Roots: Fado Creates 'Nostalgia For The Present Moment'

Fado singer Mariza.
Courtesy of the artist

Today, we welcome singer-songwriter, Grammy-nominated producer and record-company owner Rachel Faro, who visits World Cafe to discuss the Portuguese tradition of Fado.

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The Two-Way
4:24 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

NASA Discovers New Earth-Like Planets Around Distant Stars

The Kepler-69 system as it compares to our own.
NASA

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 11:59 am

NASA's Kepler spacecraft has discovered three new "habitable zone" planets that are close to Earth's size, even if they're not all that close to Earth.

NPR's Joe Palca reports, the trio of worlds is about 1,200 light years away and are thought to lie in the so-called "Goldilocks zone" — where it's not too hot and not too cold for liquid water.

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World Cafe
4:16 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Shovels And Rope: A Husband And Wife, A Homemade Sound

Shovels & Rope.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 4:35 pm

Husband and wife Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst had their own careers going — his with the band The Films and hers solo. Then they started performing together, just the two of them, and found that their personal chemistry translated to their music together.

The South Carolina duo released its debut album, O' Be Joyful, last summer. Here, Trent and Hearst join us to talk about how that homemade record came to be — and, of course, perform live in the studio.

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The Two-Way
4:05 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Ex-Justice Of The Peace Charged With Killings In North Texas

Texas authorities have charged Eric Williams, former justice of the peace, with the murders of the Kaufman County district attorney and his assistant.
Kaufman County Sheriff's Office AP

"A former justice of the peace has been charged with murder in the slayings of a North Texas district attorney and his assistant who prosecuted him for theft, officials announced Thursday," The Associated Press reports. Eric Williams is also charged with the murder of the district attorney's wife.

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Space
3:10 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Kepler Telescope Spots 3 New Planets In The 'Goldilocks Zone'

The small squares superimposed on this image of the Milky Way galaxy show where in the sky the Kepler telescope is hunting for Earth-like planets. Kepler, which launched in 2009, has identified more than 100 planets.
NASA

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 10:26 pm

Astronomers have found three planets orbiting far-off stars that are close to Earth-sized and in the "habitable zone": a distance from their suns that makes the planets' surfaces neither too hot nor too cold, but just right.

One of the three planets orbits a star with the prosaic name Kepler-69.

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Shots - Health News
3:09 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Walking While Old: Seniors Face Greatest Death Risk

City centers can be risky for pedestrians, but age, race and gender matter, too.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 3:14 pm

Parents worry a lot about the safety of children crossing the street. It looks like they should be worried about Grandpa, too.

Older people are at higher risk of being killed by a car while walking, according to new data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Going up against a 2,000-pound moving metal object is never a good idea. Pedestrians account for 13 percent of all motor-vehicle traffic deaths, even though walking accounts for 10.5 percent of trips.

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The Two-Way
3:05 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Storm System Floods Parts Of Chicago, Threatens Tornadoes

A motorist drives through standing water in a flooded underpass on Thursday in Chicago, Illinois.
Scott Olson Getty Images

A large storm system moving through the center of the country, has already caused major flooding in Chicago and is threatening to bring severe weather to the Tennessee Valley all the way to the Gulf Coast, tonight.

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn declared a state of emergency Thursday afternoon, NBC Chicago reported.

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