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Jackie Fortier

Breaking news mixed with compelling analysis, insightful commentaries, interviews, and special -- sometimes quirky -- features.

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12:03pm

Sun October 14, 2012
Remembrances

Arlen Specter, Senator Who Gave No Quarter, Dies

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 8:16 am

Specter campaigns with President George W. Bush in 2004 at the Harrisburg International Airport in Pennsylvania. Specter spent most of his political career as a moderate Republican. He supported Bush, but later criticized the then-president's warrantless wiretapping program, saying it overstepped civil liberties.
Luke Frazza AFP/Getty Images

Former Sen. Arlen Specter, one of the most influential senators of the last half-century, died Sunday from complications of non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was 82.

The five-term senator, a moderate Republican-turned-Democrat, was a key member of the Judiciary Committee and a major player in the confirmation proceedings of 14 Supreme Court nominees. But he was consistently a thorn for leaders of both political parties and their presidents.

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4:59pm

Sat October 13, 2012
Around the Nation

Detroit Snob? Of Course I Am.

Originally published on Tue October 23, 2012 1:22 pm

Some Detroiters think their city has gotten a bad rap.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

In the past few years, the news from Detroit has been fairly bleak so it's no surprise comedians like Stephen Colbert have taken shots at the downtrodden city.

"Maybe someone could attempt the unthinkable: walk through downtown Detroit."

But many positive changes are taking place. Desiree Cooper, who started a company called Detroit Snob, says residents have a lot to be snobby about.

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4:59pm

Sat October 13, 2012
Sports

A Shifting Playing Field: Coming Out As A Gay Athlete

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 9:07 am

Boxer Orlando Cruz hits a speed bag at a public gym in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Oct. 4. He said publicly that he is gay earlier this month.
Dennis M. Rivera Pichardo AP

These days, we're more likely to see professional athletes on products than protest lines. But it wasn't always this way. In the 1960s, sports stars were often as famous for what they believed as for their home runs.

Back then, many athletes spoke out about civil rights. Muhammad Ali was stripped of his heavyweight title and threatened with imprisonment for refusing to fight in Vietnam, on the grounds of racial discrimination.

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4:46pm

Sat October 13, 2012
U.S.

Family Fights For Honor Of 'Rogue' Vietnam General

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 10:42 am

Gen. John D. Lavelle was accused of authorizing illegal bombing raids in North Vietnam. Stripped of two stars, he was forced into retirement in 1972.
AP

Gen. John D. Lavelle commanded the Seventh Air Force during the Vietnam War. He served five steps down the chain of command from President Nixon. In his oral history — recorded by an Air Force history officer in 1978 — he explained how, six years earlier, his life changed forever.

It started with a meeting with a Thai general, Dawee Chullasapya, who had charged Lavelle with overseeing an operation to destroy anti-aircraft guns in North Vietnam. It was a mission necessary to keep Thailand in the war.

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2:58pm

Sat October 13, 2012
From Our Listeners

Three-Minute Fiction: 'A Day In The Sun'

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 9:07 am

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee, in for Guy Raz.

(SOUNDBITE OF CLOCK TICKING)

HEADLEE: You know what that means. It's time for Three-Minute Fiction, our contest where listeners come up with original stories in under 600 words. The challenge this round was to write a story that revolves around a U.S. president - fictional or real. Our judge, the writer Brad Meltzer, will be deciding the winner in just a few weeks. Until then, here's an excerpt from one standout story.

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