2:25am

Tue March 26, 2013
Same-Sex Marriage And The Supreme Court

High Court's Decision On Federal Marriage Law Has Tax Implications

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 8:57 am

While equal rights occupy a large part of the debate over same-sex marriage, federal taxes are also a concern for gay couples. Experts say repealing the Defense of Marriage Act will affect some same-sex couples when they file their taxes.
iStockphoto.com

When advocates for gay marriage talk about it, they usually focus on the struggle for equality and civil rights.

But how the Supreme Court decides the Defense of Marriage Act case being argued this week could possibly have big implications in another arena — the money same-sex couples owe the Internal Revenue Service.

The case that could throw out a law that defines marriage as between a man and woman started with a tax bill.

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2:24am

Tue March 26, 2013
Middle East

Syrian Aid Groups Train An Army Of Activists

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 7:57 pm

Workers prepare hundreds of food baskets to be distributed by the NGO Watan to needy refugees from Syria now living in Reyhanli, Turkey.
Jodi Hilton for NPR

At a border crossing, Mulham al-Jundi directs aid vehicles from southern Turkey into Syria. The Turkish border officials know him; they quickly stamp his papers and wave him through.

Jundi is with Watan, a private Syrian aid group that collects donations from abroad and delivers support to some of the hot spots inside Syria — places that international aid agencies have been unable to reach.

The group has seven ambulances that help support field hospitals that have been established inside Syria, says Jundi, 28, who heads the aid operation from an office in southern Turkey.

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2:23am

Tue March 26, 2013
All Tech Considered

Why Are TV Remotes So Terrible?

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 9:25 am

The buttons, symbols and signs on many modern TV remotes make for one confusing user interface.
iStockphoto.com

Let's call it the baby sitter's dilemma.

If you go to someone's house and pick up the TV remote, chances are, you won't know how it works. You know the situation's bad when even a tech writer who also majored in physics at an Ivy League school is confused by her own TV remote.

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6:39pm

Mon March 25, 2013
Same-Sex Marriage And The Supreme Court

In First Of 2 Gay-Marriage Cases, Court Turns To Proposition 8

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 8:57 am

Snow covers flowers in front of the Supreme Court building on Monday in Washington, D.C. On Tuesday, the justices hear oral arguments on the constitutionality of California's Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters /Landov

Outside the Supreme Court, lines began forming nearly a week ago. By Monday, the line had snaked down the court steps and to the corner, with people braving freezing temperatures and snow in anticipation of the historic arguments on same-sex marriage on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The justices are first hearing a constitutional challenge to California's ban on same-sex marriage. A second day is devoted to the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal benefits to same-sex couples married in the nine states where such unions are legal.

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6:28pm

Mon March 25, 2013
The Two-Way

New York's Met Museum Is Sued Over 'Deceptive' Entrance Fees

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 12:21 pm

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Astrid Stawiarz Getty Images

The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City has been slapped with a class-action lawsuit that alleges the world-class museum has deceived patrons over the years.

Under an agreement with the city, patrons are allowed to pay whatever they want to visit the museum. But the lawsuit alleges that patrons are misled into believing that admission is $25.

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5:50pm

Mon March 25, 2013
Economy

As Cardinal, New Pope Walked Fine Line On Economic Issues

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 4:59 pm

The former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio walks outside the chapel during a Mass at the Barracas neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 2003. Bergoglio, who became Pope Francis, is said to have the same position as his predecessors on economic matters.
AP

He took his name from a 13th century saint who gave up his wealth and threw in his lot with the poor. As cardinal in Argentina, he eschewed the trappings of power and privilege, taking public transportation and even cooking his own meals.

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5:30pm

Mon March 25, 2013
The Salt

Are Agriculture's Most Popular Insecticides Killing Our Bees?

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 9:42 am

Workers clear honey from dead beehives at a bee farm east of Merced, Calif.
Marcio Jose Sanchez AP

Environmentalists and beekeepers are calling on the government to ban some of the country's most widely used insect-killing chemicals.

The pesticides, called neonicotinoids, became popular among farmers during the 1990s. They're used to coat the seeds of many agricultural crops, including the biggest crop of all: corn. Neonics, as they're called, protect those crops from insect pests.

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5:01pm

Mon March 25, 2013
All Tech Considered

For Some, Resistance To Google Glass Is Not Futile

Originally published on Mon March 25, 2013 5:47 pm

Google co-founder Sergey Brin wears Google Glass glasses at an event on the University of California, San Francisco's Mission Bay campus on Feb. 20.
Jeff Chiu AP

The time of Google Glass is almost upon us. The tech giant's much touted wearable computer is almost certain to usher in a new era of social and computer interaction, as well as a huge wave of first-person cat videos.

It sounds amazing, and almost too science fiction to be true, but a lawmaker in West Virginia is concerned that the technology will also be the next thing to distract us on the road.

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4:53pm

Mon March 25, 2013
Law

Supreme Court To Examine State Ban On Affirmative Action

Originally published on Wed March 27, 2013 4:59 pm

A scene outside the Supreme Court on Monday, as the justices announced they would hear another case involving affirmative action in higher education. Many of those waiting in line at the court in a late-season snowfall were hoping to attend oral arguments on gay-marriage cases being heard Tuesday and Wednesday.
Jose Luis Magana AP

As the national spotlight turns to the U.S. Supreme Court this week with two historic arguments on same-sex marriage, the court on Monday made headlines on another high-profile issue: affirmative action.

Just 10 years ago a narrow court majority upheld affirmative action programs in higher education in an opinion written by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. But ever since O'Connor retired and was replaced by the more conservative Justice Samuel Alito, the court has been on a steady march to get rid of all race-conscious programs.

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4:53pm

Mon March 25, 2013
The Two-Way

Supreme Court Will Hear Michigan Case On Affirmative Action

The Supreme Court added another controversial case to its docket today: The court agreed to hear a case about a Michigan ballot initiative that banned racial preferences in the admission practices of the state's public university.

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