Melissa Block http://wesa.fm en LBJ Carried Poor Texas Town With Him In Civil Rights Fight http://wesa.fm/post/lbj-carried-cotulla-him-civil-rights-fight <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EizAeISiHDM</p> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 20:41:00 +0000 Melissa Block 27445 at http://wesa.fm LBJ Carried Poor Texas Town With Him In Civil Rights Fight Drilling Frenzy Fuels Sudden Growth In Small Texas Town http://wesa.fm/post/drilling-frenzy-fuels-sudden-growth-small-texas-town South Texas is in the midst of a massive oil boom. In just a few years, it has totally transformed once-sleepy communities along a crescent swoosh known as the Eagle Ford Shale formation and has brought unexpected prosperity — along with a host of new concerns.<p>Among the towns drastically changed by the drilling is Cotulla, southwest of San Antonio, about 70 miles up from the border with Mexico. The area is called brush country — flat, dry ranch land, scrubby with mesquite and parched by drought.<p>Before the boom, jobs were few and poverty was high. Thu, 10 Apr 2014 20:08:00 +0000 Melissa Block 27372 at http://wesa.fm Drilling Frenzy Fuels Sudden Growth In Small Texas Town In NCAA Finals, Two Recent Champions On Unlikely Rides http://wesa.fm/post/ncaa-finals-two-recent-champions-unlikely-rides Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block.<p>It's Huskies versus Wildcats as the Men's Division I college basketball season comes to an end tonight. Facing off are two recent champions: the University of Connecticut, who won in 2011, and the University of Kentucky who won in 2012. They've both had improbable rides to tonight's title game.<p>For more, I'm joined by NPR's Tom Goldman who will be covering the game in Arlington, Texas. Mon, 07 Apr 2014 20:08:00 +0000 Melissa Block 27159 at http://wesa.fm Another Tragedy For A City All Too Familiar With Extreme Gun Violence http://wesa.fm/post/another-tragedy-city-all-too-familiar-extreme-gun-violence Flags are fluttering at half-staff across Killeen, Texas, <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/04/03/298699681/fort-hood-shooting-the-latest">after yesterday's shooting at Fort Hood</a>. This is a city that's all too familiar with spasms of extreme gun violence: a shooting rampage at <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/1991/10/17/us/gunman-kills-22-and-himself-in-texas-cafeteria.html">Luby's Cafeteria in 1991</a> that left 23 dead. Thu, 03 Apr 2014 21:55:00 +0000 Melissa Block 26997 at http://wesa.fm Another Tragedy For A City All Too Familiar With Extreme Gun Violence On Base And In Town, Shooting Summons A Dread All Too Familiar http://wesa.fm/post/base-and-town-shooting-summons-dread-all-too-familiar From Killeen, Texas, where Fort Hood is based, Melissa Block talks to soldiers who were on base during the shooting, as well as with Killeen's mayor. The mayor explains how the town is trying to cope. Thu, 03 Apr 2014 20:43:00 +0000 Melissa Block 26986 at http://wesa.fm As Texas Gets More Diverse, Educators Grab The Bull By The Horns http://wesa.fm/post/state-diversifies-texas-educators-grab-bull-horns Texas is in the midst of a population boom and demographic sea change. Tue, 01 Apr 2014 20:33:00 +0000 Melissa Block 26855 at http://wesa.fm As Texas Gets More Diverse, Educators Grab The Bull By The Horns Orthotic Brace Takes Soldiers From Limping To Leaping http://wesa.fm/post/orthotic-brace-takes-soldiers-limping-leaping A deceptively simple leg brace is changing the lives of hundreds of wounded service members. Soldiers with badly injured legs who thought they'd have to live with terrible pain can walk and run again, pain-free.<p>Earlier this month, Army Spc. Joey McElroy took his first steps in the Intrepid Dynamic Exoskeletal Orthosis, or IDEO (pronounced: eye-DAY-oh). The device squeaked a bit as he stepped briskly on an indoor track.<p>McElroy was hit by a car and thrown from his motorcycle on Dec. 5, 2012.<p>"I knew that when I looked down there was bones comin' out of the leg that didn't look correct. Mon, 31 Mar 2014 20:37:00 +0000 Melissa Block 26784 at http://wesa.fm Orthotic Brace Takes Soldiers From Limping To Leaping Tell Your Bestie: The OED Has New Words http://wesa.fm/post/tell-your-bestie-oed-has-new-words The Oxford English Dictionary is adding some 900 new words and phrases to its pages, with wackadoodle, bestie and DIYer among them. Melissa and Robert review some of the new entries. Fri, 14 Mar 2014 20:06:00 +0000 Melissa Block 25873 at http://wesa.fm Fake Chef, Real Recipes — And The Food's Disgusting http://wesa.fm/post/fake-chef-real-recipes-and-foods-disgusting Nick Preuher is no chef; he only plays one on TV. More accurately, he has pretended to be one, appearing on various local morning television shows as a prank. Tue, 04 Mar 2014 21:05:00 +0000 Melissa Block 25345 at http://wesa.fm Letters: Genetic Experiments And Hopes For Saving Voices http://wesa.fm/post/letters-genetic-experiments-and-hopes-saving-voices Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>Finally this hour: Your letters. We heard from Aaron Berger, a high school biology teacher in Minneapolis. He listened closely to our conversation this week about mitochondrial DNA. A debate is raging over whether women who want to have children but have errors in their DNA should be allowed to get a healthy transplant.<p>Berger wrote to add something he did not hear on our air: Mitochondria are the organelles that allow our cells to release energy from the nutrients in our food. Thu, 27 Feb 2014 21:07:00 +0000 Melissa Block 25122 at http://wesa.fm More Findings, More Questions About Value Of Mammograms http://wesa.fm/post/more-findings-more-questions-about-value-mammograms Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>There's new evidence out today that's raising questions about whether women in their 40's and 50's should routinely undergo mammography to detect breast cancer. A new analysis of a big Canadian study found no evidence that regular mammograms save lives. The study even suggests that for many women, regular breast X-rays may do more harm than good.<p>NPR's Rob Stein joins us now to talk about this report. Wed, 12 Feb 2014 21:00:00 +0000 Melissa Block 24327 at http://wesa.fm Sidelined By Brain Injury, Ex-NFL Player Copes With 'Desperation' http://wesa.fm/post/sidelined-brain-injury-ex-nfl-player-copes-desperation The home of Sean Morey bears the impressive signposts of his 10-year career in the NFL: a Vince Lombardi trophy for his Super Bowl championship with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2006. A hefty Super Bowl ring. A framed photograph showing Morey in midair, launching himself like a missile to block a punt. Fri, 31 Jan 2014 22:33:00 +0000 Melissa Block 23710 at http://wesa.fm Sidelined By Brain Injury, Ex-NFL Player Copes With 'Desperation' JPMorgan Chase Agrees To Pay $5.1 Billion To Feds http://wesa.fm/post/jpmorgan-chase-agrees-pay-51-billion-feds JPMorgan Chase agreed pay $5.1 billion to settle litigation over mortgage assets sold during the housing bubble. The deal, announced late Friday afternoon, is to resolve claims the company misled Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before the housing market crashed. It is part of a tentative $13 billion deal the company is trying to reach with federal and state agencies over its mortgage liabilities. Fri, 25 Oct 2013 23:04:00 +0000 Melissa Block & Dan Bobkoff 18772 at http://wesa.fm Brazil's New Middle Class: A Better Life, Not An Easy One http://wesa.fm/post/brazils-new-middle-class-better-life-not-easy-one Tens of millions of Brazilians have risen out of poverty over the past decade in one of the world's great economic success stories. The reasons are many: strong overall economic growth, fueled by exports. A rise in the minimum wage. A more educated workforce. And big government spending programs, including direct payments to extremely poor families.<p>But becoming middle class in Brazil means a better life, not an easy one. The new, lowest rung of the middle class is what in the U.S. Wed, 18 Sep 2013 21:08:00 +0000 Melissa Block 16772 at http://wesa.fm Brazil's New Middle Class: A Better Life, Not An Easy One 'Treme' Cookbook Captures The Flavor Of A Show And A City http://wesa.fm/post/treme-cookbook-captures-flavor-show-and-city If you find yourself craving New Orleans food, you could go there and melt in the sweltering heat for a dose of gumbo or praline bacon. Or you could settle in on your couch, as I've been doing, and torture yourself watching reruns of the HBO series <em>Treme</em>. It's set in post-Katrina New Orleans and, along with the music, it puts the city's food on center stage.<p>Now, if you want to cook the food for yourself, there's <em>Treme: Stories and Recipes From the Heart of New Orleans</em>. Tue, 20 Aug 2013 20:19:00 +0000 Melissa Block 15161 at http://wesa.fm 'Treme' Cookbook Captures The Flavor Of A Show And A City Attorneys Assigned To Fort Hood Shooter Want To Back Out http://wesa.fm/post/attorneys-assigned-fort-hood-shooter-want-back-out There was an unexpected hold-up on day two of the court martial of Army Maj. Nidal Hasan, accused of gunning down fellow soldiers at Fort Hood. His "standby" attorneys have told the judge that don't believe it's ethical for them to keep assisting a man who they believe is trying to get the death penalty. Wed, 07 Aug 2013 20:31:00 +0000 Melissa Block 14477 at http://wesa.fm Amazon CEO To Buy 'Washington Post' And Sister Papers http://wesa.fm/post/amazon-ceo-buy-washington-post-and-sister-papers Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>The man who pushed the book publishing industry into the digital age is now buying one of the country's most storied newspaper companies. Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com, is acquiring The Washington Post and its small sister papers. The news broke after the markets closed today. NPR's David Folkenflik covers the newspaper industry, and he joins me now. And, David, this was, I think, the best-kept secret in Washington. Tell us some details of this transaction and how it came about.<p>DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: Well, it's an astonishing development. Mon, 05 Aug 2013 21:11:00 +0000 Melissa Block 14336 at http://wesa.fm Weiner Says He Won't Drop Campaign For NYC Mayor http://wesa.fm/post/weiner-says-he-wont-drop-campaign-nyc-mayor Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block. Disgraced former congressman - and current New York City mayoral candidate - Anthony Weiner is apologizing again, this time after the publication of still more lewd messages and photos that Weiner exchanged online with a woman who is not his wife.<p>Today's sexting scandal is, in some ways, a replay of the one that ended Weiner's congressional career two years ago. But this time, Weiner says he is not dropping his campaign for mayor of New York. Tue, 23 Jul 2013 22:19:00 +0000 Melissa Block 13631 at http://wesa.fm Guy Clark, Music's Master Craftsman, On Making Songs Last http://wesa.fm/post/guy-clark-musics-master-craftsman-making-songs-last If you want to learn how to write a song — one that's built to last, with vivid characters and images that plant you squarely inside a scene — listen to <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=15398050" target="_blank">Guy Clark</a>. <br /> Tue, 23 Jul 2013 20:41:00 +0000 Melissa Block 13624 at http://wesa.fm Guy Clark, Music's Master Craftsman, On Making Songs Last Chemical Weapons Use In Syria Crosses U.S. 'Red Line' http://wesa.fm/post/chemical-weapons-use-syria-crosses-us-red-line Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. The Obama administration has now joined France and Britain in concluding that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons against its own people. That crosses a red line that President Obama has repeatedly warned would change the U.S. calculation in Syria.<p>Tonight, the administration announced that it will step up its military support for the Syrian rebels. Thu, 13 Jun 2013 23:37:00 +0000 Melissa Block 11407 at http://wesa.fm Feds Drop Opposition To Restriction On Sales Of Morning-After Pill http://wesa.fm/post/feds-drop-opposition-restriction-sales-morning-after-pill Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. The morning-after pill will soon be available - without a prescription - on pharmacy shelves, with no restrictions on age. That's because the Obama administration has dropped a long-running battle to keep age restrictions on emergency contraception. NPR's Julie Rovner joins me to explain this policy change. And Julie, this was an unexpected development. It came tonight. Tue, 11 Jun 2013 02:35:00 +0000 Melissa Block 11174 at http://wesa.fm The Low-Tech Way Guns Get Traced http://wesa.fm/post/low-tech-way-guns-get-traced Opponents of expanding background checks for gun sales often raise the fear that it would allow the government to create a national gun registry — a database of gun transactions. In fact, federal law already bans the creation of such a registry. And the reality of how gun sales records are accessed turns out to be surprisingly low-tech.<p>The trace begins after police seize a gun at a crime scene and then reach out to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives National Tracing Center in Martinsburg, W.Va. Mon, 20 May 2013 21:28:00 +0000 Melissa Block 9890 at http://wesa.fm The Low-Tech Way Guns Get Traced Boeing's 787 Dreamliners To Fly Again After FAA Approval http://wesa.fm/post/boeings-787-dreamliners-fly-again-after-faa-approval Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And as we continue to cover the events in the Boston area, we want to also talk about one other story, Boeing 787. The jet known as the Dreamliner will be back in the air soon. This afternoon, the FAA approved Boeing's redesign of the plane's battery system. Fifty 787s have been grounded for the last three months following two serious battery failures, one which led to a fire.<p>NPR's Wendy Kaufman has been following the story, and she joins us now. Fri, 19 Apr 2013 21:59:00 +0000 Melissa Block 8171 at http://wesa.fm Report: North Korea May Be Able To Deliver Nuclear Weapons http://wesa.fm/post/report-north-korea-may-be-able-deliver-nuclear-weapons Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. A stunning revelation today from a member of Congress. It came from Republican Doug Lamborn, of Colorado, during an exchange on Capitol Hill with Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Lamborn cited a Defense Intelligence Agency report on North Korea's military capability, one that had not yet been released. Here's what Rep. Thu, 11 Apr 2013 22:07:00 +0000 Melissa Block 7711 at http://wesa.fm On Gun Ownership And Policy, 'A Country Of Chasms' http://wesa.fm/post/gun-ownership-and-policy-country-chasms The ideological gulf between gun owners and non-gun owners is a wide one — made all the more obvious by the ongoing debate over what, if any, gun control measures should be adopted in the U.S.<p>Sometimes, the debate feels like people are coming from different worlds, even for people within the same family. And while Americans are often willing to discuss their own views, it's rarer to hear conversations between people who own and love guns and those who do not.<p>Paul Gwaltney is one of the former. Thu, 21 Mar 2013 23:00:00 +0000 Melissa Block 5063 at http://wesa.fm On Gun Ownership And Policy, 'A Country Of Chasms'