Frank Kameny, a pioneer in the gay rights movement, died Tuesday at 86. In 1957, Kameny was fired from his job as an astronomer for the U.S. government because he was homosexual. He fought his dismissal in court for years and in the 1960s, began picketing outside the White House, calling for equal rights for gays and lesbians. In 2009, the government issued him a formal apology for his firing.
American banks have, for years, been accustomed to making risky bets — not only on behalf of clients but also with their own money. But many are now protesting, and preparing for, a new measure in the works that would reign in what's called proprietary trading: The Volcker Rule. Robert Siegel talks with Ben Protess of the New York Times about a new rule intended to reign in this behavior on the part of banks.
Scientists have used DNA lurking inside the teeth of medieval Black Death victims to figure out the entire genetic code of the deadly bacterium that swept across Europe more than 600 years ago, killing an estimated half of the population.
The researchers didn't find any genetic feature that could explain why the plague was so virulent, according to a report just published in the journal Nature.