Detective Dave Wells plugs his laptop into a car's event data recorder. A large portion of new cars are equipped with the device, and the government is considering making them mandatory in all vehicles. But some say there should be an "off" option.
If you're a vehicle owner and happen to have a car accident in the near future (we hope you don't), it's likely the crash details will be recorded. Automotive "black boxes" are now built into more than 90 percent of new cars, and the government is considering making them mandatory.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block.
(SOUNDBITE OF ISRAELI MILITARY BAND MUSIC)
BLOCK: A musical greeting today for President Obama, as he arrived at the airport in Tel Aviv. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was there, along with a military band. Israel is Obama's first stop on a four-day tour. Today, the president declared that despite big changes sweeping the Middle East, the U.S. alliance with Israel remains eternal.
Free Jonathan Pollard - that's something President Obama is expected to hear in Israel. In the 1980s, Pollard was a young, Jewish-American intelligence analyst who spied for Israel. He pleaded guilty; and after an alarming victim-impact statement from then-Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberger, claiming how much damage Pollard's spying had done, he was sentenced to life in prison.
Sen. Rob Portman, an Ohio conservative Republican who recently said he now supports same-sex marriage because he has a gay son, evidently has plenty of company.
A new poll from the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press suggests that many Americans have changed their minds — going from opposing to supporting same-sex marriage — because they personally know someone who is gay.
A new public service announcement in New York City aimed at preventing teen pregnancy is raising eyebrows. Ads feature young children with captions such as, 'Got a good job? I cost thousands of dollars each year.' Host Michel Martin asks the beauty shop ladies if the ads are helpful or just a shame campaign.
Basketball fans have one more day to fill out their March Madness brackets. They'll need to predict not just the champions and their route to victory, but also the paths of all the losers. It's not easy. In fact, no person or computer has yet been able to do it.
Ever since the Newtown, Ct., school shooting, there's been a raging debate over how to keep America's schoolchildren safe. National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre proposed stationing an armed guard in every school in the country. Critics said that idea was impractical and would be too expensive to carry out.
But many schools and school districts already have armed police officers. Since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999, about one-third of the schools in the U.S. have added some kind of armed security, according to federal data.
Dora Hernandez gave a decade of her life to the U.S. Navy and the Army National Guard, but some of the dangers surprised her.
"The worst thing for me is that you don't have to worry about the enemy, you have to worry about your own soldiers," she says.
Sitting in a circle, a group of women nod in agreement. All are veterans, most have spent time in Iraq and Afghanistan, but they're also survivors of another war. According to the Pentagon's own research, more than 1 in 4 women who join the military will be sexually assaulted during their careers.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., questions Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke during a Senate hearing last month. Senators from both ends of the political spectrum argue that financial reforms are insufficient to protect taxpayers from potential risks posed by large banks.
Amid Washington's dysfunction, one issue has united some liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans: a common concern that "too big to fail" is alive and well.
Despite the Dodd-Frank financial reforms, these lawmakers believe the nation's largest banks still pose a threat to the economy and that the government will step in to bail them out if they get in trouble.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 4:04 pm
One of the most interesting observations we've seen regarding the Republican National Committee's latest effort to win the hearts and minds of minorities, women and young voters was to be found on a blog that promotes a
Connie Jacobson, coroner in Natrona County, Wyo., says suicide is one of the biggest public health problems facing the state. Wyoming has the highest suicide rate in the U.S., and two-thirds of suicides in the state are by firearm.
Guns are a big part of everyday life in Wyoming, and many residents have been directly impacted by a suicide in which a gun was used. The state has the highest suicide rate in the nation, and three-quarters of Wyoming's suicides are by firearm.
The rural state's relationship with guns has long made suicide prevention efforts challenging. But that may be starting to change.
Lax Gun Laws
Last year, there were more suicides in Natrona County than anywhere else in Wyoming.
An intriguing story now that we read about today in The Washington Post: 28-year-old Lamont Butler lived briefly this winter in a mansion in Bethesda, Maryland. The house with 12 bedrooms and 6 kitchens was up for sale. Butler didn't own it. He simply walked in and lived there. But Butler says he wasn't breaking and entering. He claims the mansion was his because he's a Moorish American national, a sovereign citizen not subject to federal and state laws. He says he goes by the free national name Lamont Maurice El.
One of the joys of living in New York City is laughing at the giant screaming headlines in the New York Post. When the former secretary of state knocked back a beer on one of her trips abroad: "Swillary." When the Lance Armstrong doping scandal broke: "Drug Pedaller." And when CIA director David Petraeus admitted having an affair? "Cloak And Shag Her."
Ten years after the Iraq War began, NPR is catching up with people we encountered during the conflict. Back in 2008, NPR's armored car was targeted with a so-called sticky bomb in Baghdad. Ali Hamdani, an Iraqi who worked for NPR as a translator and producer, narrowly escaped. Shortly afterward, he left Iraq for the Unites States as a refugee.
Most people are aware of the positive effects of breast-feeding. But in many areas of the country, breast-feeding is not the cultural norm, and there's little support available for mothers. Host Michel Martin talks with Kimberly Seals Allers, the co-author of a new report on so-called "first food deserts," and a nursing mother, Areti Gourzis.
On Monday, the Supreme Court heard arguments about an Arizona law that requires voters to prove their citizenship before registering. Host Michel Martin discusses that and other voting rights cases with Hans Von Spakovsky of conservative think tank The Heritage Foundation, and Spencer Overton of George Washington Law.
Xavier University of Louisiana has a number of distinctions. It is the country's only historically black, Catholic University. Plus, it's one of the leading universities when it comes to sending African-American students on to medical school. And at 45 years, no other university's president has served longer than Xavier's Norman Francis.
"It could have been a very bad day for everyone here."
That's University of Central Florida Police Chief Richard Beary's conclusion after seeing the evidence that a former student at the school "drafted plans to kill others in his dormitory but changed his mind early Monday and took only his own life," The Orlando Sentinel writes.
At least seven Marines are dead and another seven are injured after an accident Monday night in Nevada in which a mortar round exploded inside an artillery tube, military officials tell NPR's Tom Bowman.
The Marines were taking part in a live-fire exercise, those officials say. "Shell fragments, I'm told, killed almost three [Marines] immediately," Tom says. The others died before they could be evacuated to a hospital.
The Morris Missionary Baptist Church is nestled down a red dirt road, in Morris, Ga., set among pine trees near the Alabama state line. Next to the small white church lies its most recent grave site: that of Charles Foster Jr.
While the mass killings in Newtown, Conn., and Aurora, Colo., garnered a frenzy of news coverage, statistically, they are not the norm. Each year, thousands of gun homicides in the U.S. — 11,000 in 2010 alone — attract little or no media attention.