The Two-Way
8:26 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Indiana Governor Stands By 'Religious Freedom' Law But Promises Fix

Demonstrators gather outside the City County Building in Indianapolis on Monday, calling for the state House to roll back the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which critics say can be used to discriminate against gays and lesbians.
Aaron P. Bernstein Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 1:21 pm

A new Indiana law that has set off a firestorm of criticism and threats of boycotts should be repealed or revised, says Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, whose city is hosting the NCAA men's basketball tournament's Final Four this weekend.

Around midday Tuesday, Gov. Mike Pence said the controversial legislation will be clarified instead of being annulled. He added, "We'll fix this and we'll move forward."

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NPR Ed
8:03 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Live From Small Town America: Teachers Who Blog To Stay In Touch

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 10:36 am

Katie Morrow became a teacher, among other things, because of wanderlust.

"I'm going to be a teacher because I can go anywhere in the world," she thought.

She's originally from a small town in Nebraska called O'Neill, population 3,700. "In the middle of nowhere, literally," she says.

So where did she end up teaching? Right back in O'Neill. She fell in love with a hometown boy and ended up at O'Neill's only public school. It's K-12, with 750 students.

Morrow teaches middle-school English; she's also a technology integration specialist.

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Around the Nation
7:40 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Selfie Sticks Get The Boot At Coachella And Lallapalooza

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 7:58 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Around the Nation
7:40 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Colorado Allows Sales Of Powdered Alcohol

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 7:58 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR Story
7:13 am
Tue March 31, 2015

A Ghostly Chorus Narrates 'The World Before Us'

Emily Jan NPR

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 10:41 am

A gaggle of querulous ghosts narrates the events in Aislinn Hunter's new novel The World Before Us. Hunter, a Canadian author of both fiction and poetry, brings a moody grace to these phantoms and to her telling of this rather quirky tale. The novel spans three time periods: The present, a generation earlier, and the late 19th century. The spirits present themselves as witnesses to each period, and they become characters as rich and personal as any blood-and-bones characters in the novel.

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Politics
6:56 am
Tue March 31, 2015

NC Governor Doesn't Like Religious Exemption Bills

Governor Pat McCrory
Chuck Burton/AP

 Governor Pat McCrory isn't backing bills giving exemptions to court officials who decline to perform certain marriages and offering other religious protections to businesses.

McCrory said Monday he wouldn't sign in its current form a Senate bill that allows magistrates and some register of deeds workers to refuse to carry out marriage duties based on a "sincerely held religious objection." Gay-rights advocates say the measure upholds discrimination.

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The Two-Way
6:25 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Venezuela Cuts Oil Subsidies To Caribbean Nations

Originally published on Tue March 31, 2015 7:58 am

Low oil prices are forcing Venezuela to cut a generous subsidy program to Cuba and a dozen other Caribbean nations.

Venezuela is Latin America's largest oil producer, and its economy depends heavily on oil exports. It's been been hit hard by the tumbling oil prices.

"Venezuela is in desperate straits. The oil sector has been deteriorating, and now with the slumping oil prices, they needed cash desperately," says Michael Shifter, the president of the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington, D.C.-based group that studies the region.

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The Two-Way
6:25 am
Tue March 31, 2015

Pharmacists Group Votes To Discourage Members From Providing Execution Drugs

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 8:16 pm

The largest pharmacist association in the country has voted to discourage its members from participating in executions.

The move could make executions harder for states that have been ordering their drugs from compounding pharmacies. As we've reported, some states like Texas turned to the pharmacies after big pharmaceutical companies — under pressure from death penalty opponents — decided to stop selling their drugs to U.S. prisons.

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Health
6:25 am
Tue March 31, 2015

GNC Announces New Policy After Facing Scrutiny Over Mislabeled Products

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 6:23 pm

After a probe by the New York Attorney General's office, GNC has announced major new testing and quality control procedures. The dietary supplement retailer recently faced allegations of mislabeling its products.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Politics
6:17 am
Tue March 31, 2015

House, Senate Give Preliminary Ok to NC Gas Tax Deal

David Schaper NPR

Gasoline taxes in North Carolina appear to be headed downward -but not by as much as they could have.  The General Assembly gave its initial approval last night to a compromise reached between House and Senate members on how to handle an expected sharp drop in the motor fuels tax.  GOP lawmakers and transportation officials warned the projected decline based on the current formula for calculating the tax would have delayed road projects.  The final agreement would initially reduce the tax by 1.5 cents per gallon to 36 cents, falling to 35 cents next January and 34 cents in July 2016.  There

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