Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 5:14 pm
Scott Carpenter, the fourth American astronaut to fly in space and the second to orbit Earth, died on Thursday, a NASA official tells NPR.
Carpenter, an original Mercury 7 astronaut, was 88.
NPR's Russell Lewis filed this report for our Newscast unit:
"Scott Carpenter's 1962 flight was just five hours, and his mission was to determine how well humans could function in weightlessness. His capsule circled the Earth three times before returning for a parachute landing.
Millions of Americans believe in the afterlife, and author and scholar Joseph Telushkin is no exception. The Orthodox rabbi has written extensively about Judaism and says that the concept of God is incompatible with the idea that life ends at death.
He holds that conviction so strongly, he tells NPR's Robert Siegel, because he believes that God is just — and he has to assume that a just God would provide some reward to a person who has lived his or her life well, while imposing a different fate upon those who do evil.
Ten days into the partial government shutdown, the estimated 800,000 furloughed federal workers have got to be feeling a bit stir crazy.
Congress has agreed to pay back the furloughed workers for the time they are shut out of the office, so for some it's like an unexpected, but paid, vacation of indeterminate length. But the more than a week of shutdown definitely means going without that cash in the short term. And for some of those workers with less of a financial cushion, that means getting creative.
Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 6:55 pm
In an emotional statement on Thursday, Baby Veronica's biological father said he and the Cherokee Nation were dropping the legal fight to regain custody of the 4-year-old girl.
"I know we did everything in our power to keep Veronica home with her family," Dusten Brown said in Oklahoma. "Veronica is only 4 years old, but her entire life has been lived in front of the media and the entire world. I cannot bear for [it to continue] any longer.
Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 2:17 pm
Most Americans don't get the 4 to 6.5 cups of fruits and vegetables we're supposed to consume every day, per government guidelines. But companies that make juice, especially high-end, "fresh" juice, are ready to come to our rescue.
Every year there's Black History Month in February, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May and Native American History month in November. And then there's Hispanic Heritage Month, which actually starts mid-September and ends in October.* These heritage months often leave people wondering what is the best and least hokey way to celebrate these cultures.**
Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 4:12 pm
Fast-food giant McDonald's is set to become a publishing giant as well — at least temporarily. For two weeks next month, McDonald's says it will oust the toys that usually come in its Happy Meals and replace them with books it has published itself.
Photographer and video artist Carrie Mae Weems was having a tough day at the studio last month when she learned that she had been named a MacArthur fellow.
"My assistants weren't doing some things they were supposed to be doing. And so I'm screaming at them, and just in the middle of my rant the phone rang," she tells NPR's Michel Martin. "I sunk into my chair, put my head down on my desk, and cried and laughed for about five minutes."