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PRI: Latest Stories

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Updated 2019-03-21 19:23
Don McLean’s ‘American Pie’
The song where everyone knows the words, but few know what those words mean.
Many immigrants have years of work experience. ‘Upskilling’ programs are helping them use that knowledge.
Jorge Balcazar already has 10 years of welding experience. A six-month certification course will help him get ahead.
Officials investigating bombs sent to top Democrats and CNN as election looms
A suspicious package sent to Clinton was found late Tuesday while another package addressed to Obama was found early Wednesday. The Time Warner Center in New York City was evacuated after an explosive device was found in the CNN mail room Wednesday morning.
In a California elementary school, parents have a classroom of their own
Adult education is often thought of as completely separate from children’s education. But some school districts are trying to integrate them by creating family literacy programs.
The greatest movie never made
Sandi Tan revisits a decades-old personal mystery in her new documentary, “Shirkers.”
When war keeps students from starting high school on time, should they be allowed an extra year?
Advocates say too many schools aren’t giving older teens the chance to get a good high school experience.
Kavanaugh’s track record on environmental law favors business over climate change protections
Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's strict interpretations in previous rulings on environmental law indicate he will not support strong government action on climate change.
Even a slight increase in global warming could be catastrophic, experts warn
A new Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report details dire climate damage could occur if global average surface temperatures rise to 2 degrees C from the 1.5 degrees C maximum set by the Paris Climate Agreement. Is it too late to clean up our human-made climate change mess?
The Violence Against Women Act is unlikely to deter domestic violence — here's why
VAWA disproportionately funds the criminal legal system but it has not deterred domestic violence. Lawyer Leah Goodmark argues that criminalizing domestic violence actually makes the problem worse and that it's time for alternative forms of justice and support.
Tariffs are hurting Tennessee, but voters seem to be shrugging them off
The Tennessee Senate race is one of the most closely watched in the country. Farmers, whiskey distillers and small businesses are feeling the sting from President Donald Trump's tariffs. But is it enough to turn deep red Tennessee blue?
An Alaskan village is falling into the sea. Washington is looking the other way.
Shishmaref, Alaska, home to a tightly knit Iñpuiat community of 600 people, is ground zero for climate change in the Arctic. What happens here could foreshadow the fates of other US coastal communities. Why won't Washington pay attention?
Charles Darwin's 'tree of life' gets a new look
The Tree of Life proposed by Charles Darwin in the 19th century depicts different forms of life diverging from one another as they evolve down through successive generations. But discoveries of new life forms and the phenomenon of horizontal gene transfer indicate life can also evolve through convergence.
Why the military isn’t tracking climate change costs
A watchdog agency told the military last year it should track repair costs related to extreme weather and climate change. It said no.
'Leaf peeping' is huge in New England. Will climate change alter tourism?
Each fall, millions of tourists come to New England to see the changing leaves. It's big business. But climate change is moving the calendar.
Orthodox Christianity faced with a political divide
Bitter political divisions in Ukraine have created a split in Orthodox Christianity.
This Google engineer was asked to create a censored version of Google News for China. He refused.
Vijay Boyapati says he 'immediately felt very uncomfortable' when he say censorship requirements for the project.
Space is the place
How musicians like Sun Ra and George Clinton imagined a better world through Afrofuturism.
Colson Whitehead goes zombie
How did a highbrow MacArthur genius end up writing a book about zombies?
The sci-fi sex scene that changed my life
Before he was old enough to fully understand he was transgender, Evan Urquhart found Isaac Asimov’s “The Robots of Dawn.”
Harlan Ellison: a kind of twisted fantasy
Harlan Ellison wrote for “Star Trek,” and authored the dystopian classic “A Boy and His Dog.” But don’t call him a science fiction writer.
How Hodor became the heart of ‘Game of Thrones’
Kristian Nairn has one of the hardest jobs on “Game of Thrones.” He has to make an entire character come to life with only one word: Hodor. So why has it made him so famous?
Japan eases immigration restrictions to fill chronic care worker shortage
Who will care for Japan's elderly? The government is now welcoming foreign workers to fill the labor gap, but some say racism and discrimination are major obstacles in Japanese society.
This group uses the tide to send bottles of rice and contraband to North Korea
A group of Koreans dumps water bottles loaded with rice, medicine and USB drives into the sea on the North Korean border. They hope that the information loaded into those USBs can spark some sort of revolution in the North.
Members of this leftist London gym 'train together for the struggle'
Well before the events in Charlottesville, Virginia, or the rise of the UK Independence Party, the co-owners of Solstar gym in the London neighborhood of Tottenham were training to fight back against what they see as the rise of violence on the part of the right-wing.
Angry at status quo, Brazil’s voters open a door for the far right
Far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro's hardline positions speak to working-class voters who say they feel the left has abandoned them.
Women are making Bolivia a destination for foodies
Women dominate the food business in Bolivia. From farmers to market sellers, chefs to restaurant owners, women are transforming Bolivia's capital, La Paz, into a food destination.
Online map helps city dwellers find wild produce growing in their neighborhoods
For anyone who wants to skip the farm and go apple picking in their neighborhood this fall, there’s the Falling Fruit app, an online map that uses imported datasets to guide foragers to the locations of public fruit trees, edible plants and mushrooms.
Teammates from Harvard recall protest at 1968 Mexico City Olympics
In 1968, Andrew Larkin and his Harvard teammates represented the United States at the Summer Olympics in Mexico City. There, American runners John Carlos and Tommie Smith turned the world on its head by raising two fists in the air while the national anthem played.
For some Alaska Natives, the Bering Sea and an international border makes it hard to go home
For generations, Alaskan Natives crossed the Bering Sea to visit family on nearby islands. It’s harder today, thanks to international politics, high costs and weather.
In Iceland, a shifting sculpture for a changing Arctic
A sculpture in Iceland marks the location of the Arctic Circle — at least the circle's location this year, because it turns out that the Arctic Circle doesn't stay in one place. It's a suggestion of how difficult it is to pin down anything in the Arctic.
One Guatemalan child's memory of trying to come to the US: 'They took my dad and locked him up'
Despite everything that happened, and even though he would like to remain with his family intact in Guatemala, her father sees no hope. He still wants to go to the US.
After months of being targeted by Trump, Canadian dairy farmers angry at terms of trade deal
One could argue that NAFTA negotiations came down to one big sticking point: Canadian milk. Trump won, Canada lost. And Canadian farmers aren't happy.
She wanted to study at Hebrew University, but Israel is blocking her
University of Florida graduate Lara Alqasem applied and got accepted to a master's program at Hebrew University. But Israeli authorities say her political past disqualifies her.
Serendipity in a used book
What hidden treasures can be found in the pages of old books?
Why Theresa Rebeck obsessively finishes what she starts
Playwright Theresa Rebeck on her new play, “Bernhardt/Hamlet.”
Justine Bateman is so happy to not be famous
The former “Family Ties” actress takes an unflinching look at her one-time fame and our national obsession with getting those 15 minutes in her book, “Fame: The Hijacking of Reality.”
The rise and fall of pirate radio station WBAD
In the 1990s, pirate radio station WBAD started playing hip-hop music without bleeping it like commercial radio. But even if it was playing church music, the FCC still would have come after them.
Looking for stories of Russia beyond Putin? This artist has the answer.
If you’re among those who feel press coverage of Russia has an unhealthy fascination with all things Vladimir Putin, then enter artist Victoria Lomasko’s “Other Russias” to the rescue. Lomasko is out to capture Russian stories that most of us never see.
In Springfield, Massachusetts, bracing for uncertainty from Trump's trade policies
The coming years should bring more solid, blue-collar jobs to Springfield, as CRRC builds subway cars not just for Boston, but also for Philadelphia and LA. But now there’s a hitch: significant uncertainty linked to President Trump’s escalating trade war with China.
Republicans are vulnerable in Arizona, but it’s about more than the so-called 'Latino vote'
Will Latino candidates bring out more Democratic voters in Arizona? The answer might depend on how Latinos feel about the border.
After Hurricane Maria, farmers in Puerto Rico struggle to rebuild
Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico's agriculture sector. Months later, many farmers are still trying to get back on their feet, with the help of friends and volunteers.
When an American says 'sure' to a Brit, does it mean yes or no?
When American Lynne Murphy says "sure" to her British husband, he thinks she means "not really."
This Latino, Arab American was a long-shot candidate — until his opponent was indicted for corruption
On the congressional campaign for the 50th District in California, incumbent Duncan Hunter was indicted for corruption. Then he went on the attack.
Aboriginal rangers use traditional knowledge to protect their lands
A government program has created 800 full-time Indigenous rangers who patrol to make sure water sources are clean and restore resources damaged by intensive farming practices.
Chicago hotel workers join #MeToo, demand protections against sexual assault
Sexual assault in the hotel industry is a global issue. Housekeepers here in the US are campaigning for more protections in the workplace.
'I lost my right to vote before I ever had the right to vote'
Around six million Americans with criminal records are excluded from voting in elections. Not ideal in a democracy. But this is not a new topic. Courts in other democracies have debated this issue, and some have found solutions.
As more Aboriginal children are removed from families, critics say government risks a second Stolen Generation
The number of Aboriginal children removed from their families in Australia and placed in out-of-home care has doubled in the last 10 years. In the Northern Territory it is three times as high as a decade ago.
Why would someone want to kill Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi?
Jordanian journalist Salameh Nematt has faith his friend Jamal Khashoggi is still alive, despite reports he was killed inside a Saudi consulate in Turkey.
UN climate warning: Immediate change needed to preserve 'life as we know it'
Keeping the Earth's temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius means making rapid, unprecedented changes in the way people use energy to eat, travel and live or we risk even more extreme weather and loss of species, a UN report said on Monday.
Australia returned Uluru to Aboriginals 34 years ago. They're only just now banning tourists from climbing the sacred site.
For decades, the Aboriginal community has politely asked tourists not to climb Uluru, one of their most sacred sites. Beginning in October 2019, the site will finally be closed to climbing.