8:24am

Tue March 20, 2012
Monkey See

Cheaper Clothes And Shorter Stories: On Soaps, Strange 'Days' Indeed

Peter Reckell as Bo Brady and Kristian Alfonso as Hope Williams Brady: still at it after all these years.
Mitchell Haaseth NBC Universal

It's not easy being one of the last soaps standing, as Neda Ulaby reports on today's Morning Edition. For fans, the shuttering of iconic shows like All My Children and Guiding Light has upended routines that, for some, date back to childhood. When I was in high school, my soap of choice was Days Of Our Lives, which Neda says has changed a lot since that era — well, it's changed and it hasn't.

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7:45am

Tue March 20, 2012
The Two-Way

Trayvon Martin Killing: Federal Officials Will Try To Calm Racial Tensions

  • Mark Simpson on 'Morning Edition'

Here are some of the latest developments in a story that has captured attention across the nation and raised again the issue of race relations in America — the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla., last month:

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7:10am

Tue March 20, 2012
The Two-Way

Dozens Killed By More Bombings In Iraq; 'Deadliest Day' In A Month

The scene in Ramadi, capital of Iraq's Anbar province, after a bomb exploded there today.
Azhar Shallal AFP/Getty Images

Another wave of bombings in Iraq killed dozens of people today and wounded about 200 in more than a dozen cities and towns.

According to The Associated Press, it's the kind of violence "officials had dreaded in the run-up to a Baghdad meeting of the Arab world's top leaders, which the government hoped would showcase the nation's stability." That summit is scheduled for next week. As the AP adds:

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4:27am

Tue March 20, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

How Do Racial Attitudes Affect Opinions About The Health Care Overhaul?

Originally published on Tue March 20, 2012 8:31 am

President Obama signs the Affordable Care Act in the East Room of the White House on March 23, 2010. Data suggest that racial attitudes of ordinary Americans shape both how they feel about the health care overhaul and how intense those feelings are.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

As the Supreme Court gets ready to hear a case involving the constitutionality of President Obama's health care overhaul, social scientists are asking a disturbing — and controversial — question: Do the intense feelings about the health care overhaul among ordinary Americans stem from their philosophical views about the appropriate role of government, or from their racial attitudes about the signature policy of the country's first black president?

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4:14am

Tue March 20, 2012
Law

Do Juvenile Killers Deserve Life Behind Bars?

Originally published on Tue March 20, 2012 3:18 pm

Raphael Johnson shot and killed a classmate when he was 17. After his release from prison, he got bachelor's and master's degrees and started a community policing program in Detroit.
Courtesy of Equal Justice Initiative

The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday in two homicide cases testing whether it is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment to sentence a 14-year-old to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

There are currently 79 of these juvenile killers who will die in prison. What's more, in many states, the penalty is mandatory, meaning neither judge nor jury is allowed to consider the youngster's age or background in meting out the sentence.

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4:00am

Tue March 20, 2012
Afghanistan

Afghan Farmer Lost 11 Relatives In Shooting Rampage

Originally published on Tue March 20, 2012 5:49 pm

Afghans gather outside a military base in the Panjwai district in Afghanistan on March 11, after 16 civilians were killed in a massacre allegedly carried out by a U.S. soldier.
Allauddin Khan AP

Afghans say they're so inured to civilians killed in wars that they bury their dead and move on. That's not so easy for Muhammad Wazir. He lost his mother, his wife, a sister-in-law, a brother, a nephew, his four daughters and two of his sons in last week's mass shooting in two villages.

"My little boy, Habib Shah, is the only one left alive, and I love him very much," says Wazir.

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4:00am

Tue March 20, 2012
U.S.

Florida Teen's Shooter Faces FBI Scrutiny

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

We're following up now on the fatal shooting of a black teenager by an Hispanic neighborhood watch leader. That shooting took place three weeks ago in the central Florida town of Sanford. So far, no charges have been filed against George Zimmerman, who says he was acting in self-defense when he shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The African-American community is frustrated. And yesterday student protestors were out in Sanford demanding the shooter be arrested. Mark Simpson of member station WMFE in Orlando has this report.

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4:00am

Tue March 20, 2012
U.S.

House Republicans To Unveil Budget Plan

Originally published on Tue March 20, 2012 8:31 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This morning, House Republicans unveiled a new budget plan on Capitol Hill. And like President Obama's budget document last month, the GOP's version is as much a political statement as an actual road map. NPR's Tamara Keith has that story.

TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: In some ways, this budget is a sequel. This time last year, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan unveiled a controversial budget document that passed the House with strong GOP support.

(SOUNDBITE OF WEB VIDEO)

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4:00am

Tue March 20, 2012
NPR Story

Business News

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Italy's next step in a crisis is at the top of NPR's business news.

Italian prime minister Mario Monti is trying to restructure the economy so his country has a better shot at paying its debts. Today, he sits down to negotiate with the country's powerful trade union leaders. Monti hopes to weaken legal protections that make it almost impossible to fire employees. He blames these rules for slow economic growth and high unemployment in Italy.

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3:57am

Tue March 20, 2012
Energy

Native Alaskans Divided On State's Oil Drilling Debate

Originally published on Tue March 20, 2012 9:06 am

A drilling rig sits on Oooguruk Island off the coast of Alaska's North Slope. The 6-acre island was built by Pioneer Natural Resources so it could drill for oil on the Arctic Ocean.
Steve Quinn AP

Shell Oil plans to explore for petroleum off Alaska's north coast this summer. The native people of Alaska have a big stake in both oil revenue and environmental protection. That conflict has played out in recent trips by Inupiats to Washington, D.C., to argue their case.

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