Equity

Race, Culture & Ethnicity

Five years ago, when George Zimmerman was acquitted in the shooting death of an unarmed 17-year-old named Trayvon Martin, the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter lit up the social media universe and ignited powerful dialogue around racial injustice and police brutality.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

To the outsider, there is a beguiling charm and tranquility about the farming town of Central do Maranhão in northeast Brazil. It's tucked amid the palm groves, mango trees and rice fields that cover the landscape rolling gently toward the Atlantic Ocean, some 30 miles to the north.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

For decades, the Catholic Church has grappled with sexual abuse of children by priests — through quiet reassignments and headline-grabbing scandals, internal investigations and public criminal charges, simmering controversies and settlements with survivors.

Now, some parishes in Pennsylvania are reckoning with the problem through an unusual dose of transparency.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Earlier this week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions delivered an ominous warning.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

The Catholic Church now formally considers the death penalty "inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person" and is pledging to work for its abolition worldwide.

It's a shift for the church, which used to consider the death penalty a "means of safeguarding the common good" in response to "certain crimes." The update to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the book of official teachings of the church, was announced Thursday.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Illinois House Democrats

Advocates of the so-called Illinois Human Rights Act "expansion bill" are urging Governor Bruce Rauner to sign that piece of legislation, which is currently on his desk. Otherwise, without his action, it would die by mid-August.

Blue tarps still dot rooftops, homes lack electricity needed to refrigerate medicines, and clinics chip away at debts incurred from running generators. Yet despite these residual effects from last year's devastating hurricanes, Puerto Rico is moving ahead with major cuts to its health care safety net that will affect more than a million of its poorest residents.

You can get away with calling something "white trash" in polite company, on cable television and in the headline of a magazine article. An article in The New Republic once posed the question of whether President Trump might be "a white trash icon." For some reason, the term manages to come across as less offensive than most other racial slurs.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Last year, after a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville turned violent, dozens of Confederate monuments came down, one by protesters in Durham, N.C...

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

UNIDENTIFIED CROWD: (Chanting) No KKK, no fascist USA.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Most of us remember the broad outlines of the story: 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was followed, shot and killed by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman in Sanford, Fla., on the night of Feb. 26, 2012.

More than six weeks later, Zimmerman was arrested and, eventually, tried for second-degree murder in a case that would be as racially polarizing as the O.J. Simpson trial had been nearly 20 years earlier.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson about two months after he was convicted of failing to report child sex abuse by a priest in the 1970s.

The Australian clergyman had previously stepped aside from his role but did not formally resign, saying he was planning to appeal the conviction.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NOEL KING, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

A prominent Vatican diplomat and the former archbishop of Washington, D.C., has resigned from the College of Cardinals over sexual abuse allegations. Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick presented his resignation on Friday evening.

A federal appeals court handed workers in Birmingham, Ala., a significant win this week. The city is in a battle against state lawmakers over whether it has the right to raise its minimum wage.

The Birmingham workers and the Alabama legislature have been fighting in court since the city voted to increase its minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, from $7.25, in February 2016. That hike never took effect. The state legislature swiftly passed a law barring municipalities like Birmingham from setting their own minimum wage.

Read these sentences aloud:

I never said she stole my money.

I never said she stole my money.

I never said she stole my money.

Emphasizing any one of the words over the others makes the string of words mean something completely different. "Pitch change" — the vocal quality we use to emphasize words — is a crucial part of human communication, whether spoken or sung.

A pair of New Jersey radio hosts have apologized after they were suspended for referring to the state's Sikh attorney general as "turban man" during their Wednesday program.

WKXW-FM hosts Dennis Malloy and Judi Franco issued a written apology to Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal, who was appointed in January and is the first Sikh in the nation to hold such a post.

Roseanne Barr has just given a master class on how not to apologize for a massive public flameout.

Appearing on Fox News pundit Sean Hannity's show Thursday, Barr claimed the backlash over a widely condemned racist tweet that led to ABC canceling her show was a huge misunderstanding.

The tweet implied that senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett was the offspring of the Muslim Brotherhood and an ape. Barr's defense? She didn't know Jarrett — who was born in Iran to American parents — was an African-American woman.

Isaiah Milton, 10, holds a candle at a memorial for his 19-year-old cousin Jeremiah Shaw, who was shot to death   in Chicago.
ALEX WROBLEWSKI

The gap, caused mainly by homicides, is one of the biggest in the nation.

During their daughter's freshman year of high school, Paul and Joy Orton spent afternoons describing biology diagrams and illustrations to her. She is blind, and the materials given to her in class were not in a format she could read.

Their daughter had no trouble understanding the material, but she was dependent on her parents. She wanted to learn on her own, like her classmates did.

Her parents successfully lobbied their northern Alabama district for a Braille biology textbook.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Illinois poverty ratings
Social IMPACT Research Center / Heartland Alliance

About half of Illinois’ counties are on poverty watch or warning lists released Monday by an anti-poverty organization, the Heartland Alliance.

The number of counties with those poor ratings increased from 30 last year to 52 this year. 

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Pages