London 2012: The Summer Olympics
3:10 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

A Need For Speed: Inside Jamaica's Sprint Factory

Jamaica's Usain Bolt shattered world records in the 100 and 200 meter races at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Shown here in the 200 meters at Beijing, he's looking to repeat this summer at the London Olympics and add another chapter to Jamaica's great tradition of sprinting.
Julian Finney Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 8:09 pm

When it comes to sprinting, Jamaica reigns supreme.

At the Beijing Olympics in 2008, a Jamaican man — Usain Bolt — and a woman — Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce — took home the golds in the 100-meter race, and at this summer's London games, they're hoping to do it again.

If you visit the Caribbean island nation, you'll hear a lot of explanations for why they're so good, but let's start with the obvious: In Jamaica, kids really like to run.

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Sports
2:45 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Churchill Downs Supervisor Beginning His Last Lap

The field of horses charges down the stretch in the seventh race at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., on June 19, 2009. The day marked the first night racing at the storied track in its 135-year history. Track superintendent Butch Lehr is retiring after Saturday's race. He's been maintaining the track since 1982.
Ed Reinke AP

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 4:04 pm

The surface on which Kentucky Derby horses will race Saturday is a special piece of real estate, built for high performance and safety. The track is generically described as dirt, but is actually a careful mixture of river sand, silt and clay.

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The Two-Way
2:32 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

23 Dead, 9 Hanged From Bridge In Nuevo Laredo, Mexico

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 4:24 pm

It has been a bloody day for the Mexican border-town of Nuevo Laredo. It started at dawn when 9 bodies were found hanging from a bridge of a major thoroughfare that connects Nuevo Laredo to Monterrey.

And as the day went by, the mutilated bodies of 14 others were found across the city.

El Universal, one of Mexico's largest dailies, reports:

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National Security
2:22 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

At Sept. 11 Trial, Military Commissions Face Scrutiny

In this photograph of a courtroom sketch, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, charged with orchestrating the Sept. 11 attacks, attends a court hearing at Guantanamo in 2008. He's expected to appear in a military court Saturday.
Janet Hamlin AP

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 4:04 pm

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other men charged in the Sept. 11 attacks were supposed to be tried six years ago in a military tribunal created by the Bush administration.

But that system — which allowed hearsay evidence, among other things — faced questions about its fundamental fairness. When President Obama came into office, he put all the proceedings at Guantanamo on hold and asked that the commission system be revamped.

Since then, there has been an effort to make sure the trials at Guantanamo are credible, with both Congress and the Supreme Court weighing in.

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Asia
2:16 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

U.S. Supports Chinese Activist's Bid To Study Abroad

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 4:04 pm

News of a possible way out of the diplomatic impasse over Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng has again overshadowed other events in Beijing. The Chinese Foreign ministry says Chen might be allowed to leave China to study abroad. Meanwhile about 200 U.S. officials from the State Department and the U.S. Treasury are in China to discuss other matters vital to the U.S.-China relationship.

Religion
2:15 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Five Philly Priests Removed For Sex Abuse Allegations

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 4:04 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The Catholic Archbishop of Philadelphia announced today that he is removing five priests from ministry. Charles Chaput said investigations into other priests accused of abuse will continue.

But as NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty reports, victims' advocates are not satisfied.

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The Two-Way
2:07 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

'A Factor In A Much Larger Life': Debating Chen Guangcheng's Blindness

Chen Guangcheng at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. This photo was released by the Embassy's press office.
Handout Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 9, 2012 8:55 am

If you've been following the case of Chen Guangcheng, the activist looking to leave China for the U.S., there's one thing you probably know about him.

The fact that he's blind.

But is Chen's blindness central to his story – his political activism and the diplomatic dance he has set off?

"His blindness did not give him any particular bravery or insight," says Stephen Kuusisto, the author of two memoirs about being blind. "It is just a factor in a much larger life,"

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Law
2:04 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Hazing Hard To Prosecute In Fla. Despite Tough Laws

Pam and Robert Champion hold their son's drum major hat from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. Robert Champion Jr. died after a hazing incident in November.
Jim Burress for NPR

Originally published on Fri May 4, 2012 5:28 pm

Charges filed this week against 13 people in connection with a hazing death at Florida A&M University have thrust the hazing culture into the spotlight.

Florida has one of the toughest anti-hazing laws in the country, but legal experts say prosecuting the crime can be tricky.

State attorney Lawson Lamar, who is leading the prosecution in the death of drum major Robert Champion, acknowledges the case is complicated.

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Technology
1:45 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Have You Friended Your Favorite Cause?

Robin Roberts of Good Morning America talks with Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg about Facebook's new tool that lets users share their organ donor status.
Rick Rowell AP

Originally published on Wed May 9, 2012 11:45 am

Hours after Facebook put out a call Tuesday for its users to register as organ donors, 6,000 people had already signed up. That's more than 15 times the number of people who normally register each day, according to Donate Life America, which is collaborating with Facebook.

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Economy
1:35 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

'Dejected': Some Unemployed Give Up The Hunt

People wait at a job fair in New York City's Queens borough on Thursday. While millions of out-of-work Americans continue to seek employment, others have given up looking.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

The unemployment rate slipped a notch to 8.1 percent in April, but not because employers went on a hiring spree.

Instead, the jobless rate appeared to improve because fewer people were applying for positions. Last month, the civilian labor force shrank by 342,000 people.

Economists say many of those workforce dropouts were "discouraged" workers who moved to the sidelines after months, even years, of trying to nail down jobs.

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