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Around the Nation
3:33 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Cash-Strapped Cities Struggle To Bury Their Unclaimed Dead

Detroit's finances are so tight that unclaimed bodies can wait months or years for a pauper's burial. To help, Perry Funeral Home in Detroit has been holding free memorial services and cut-rate burials for unclaimed remains for years, like this service in 2009.
Carlos Osorio AP

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 11:34 am

Shrinking government budgets are changing not only how people live, but also how some municipalities deal with death. In Detroit, funding is so tight that when a homeless person dies, it can take a year or more to receive even a simple pauper's burial.

I met T.C. Latham several years ago, panhandling in downtown Detroit. He was short with a scraggly beard, bent glasses missing one lens and, for the most part, on the good side of the police.

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Around the Nation
3:32 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Air Force Trains Special Lawyers For Sexual Assault Victims

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 10:23 am

Many victims of sexual assault in the military say only one experience comes close to the pain of the actual crime, and that's going to court to bring charges against the attacker.

This is believed to be one reason why so few victims come forward and report these crimes, and now the Air Force is hoping a new team of lawyers will help to change that.

At Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, a tall three-star general stands in front of a class of JAG officers — Air Force lawyers. He tells them they are pioneers in a new field, and then lays a heavy responsibility on them.

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Parallels
3:31 am
Mon June 3, 2013

For Young Somali Journalists, Work Often Turns Deadly

Reporter Donna Ali, 18, awaits her turn to go on air. Shabelle hires reporters as young as 15.
Gregory Warner NPR

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 9:05 pm

Shabelle Media is Somalia's largest news outlet — and a very dangerous place to work. Of the 12 journalists gunned down in the country last year, four were reporting for Shabelle.

A number of the reporters are teenagers, some as young as 15. The reporters almost never venture out of the office, which is outfitted with sleeping quarters and a kitchen.

Why are Shabelle's young journalists being targeted more than others?

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Business
3:29 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Surf Air Offers 'All You Can Fly' For A Monthly Fee

Surf Air CEO Wade Eyerly stands in front of one of the airline's turboprop planes in Burbank, Calif. Eyerly boasts that Surf Air will offer frequent commuters a corporate jet experience for not much more than regular airline prices.
Wendy Kaufman NPR

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 10:23 am

A new airline with an innovative, "all you can fly" business model is about to take off. Federal regulators have just given California-based Surf Air permission to begin passenger service.

Surf Air is a big idea with small planes. For a flat monthly fee, subscribers will be able to take all the trips they want among four California cities: San Francisco, Monterey, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles.

The airline's co-founder and CEO Wade Eyerly boasts that Surf Air will offer frequent commuters a corporate jet experience for not that much more than regular airline prices.

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Education
5:37 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

Why Some Schools Want To Expel Suspensions

When Garfield High School in Los Angeles stopped suspending students for "willful defiance" several years ago. Tuesday, the Los Angeles Unified School District board voted to follow suit in all Los Angeles schools.
Reed Saxon AP

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 12:12 am

The effectiveness of school suspensions is up for debate. California is the most recent battleground, but a pattern of uneven application and negative outcomes is apparent across the country.

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Three-Minute Fiction
5:18 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

Litter

iStockphoto.com

I found your soul discarded in the street today.

On a three by five index card, you scrawled in heavy black permanent marker letters, "YOU NOW OWN MY SOUL." Initialed under that. Today's date under that. It's a neat little binding contract. I bet it would hold up in the highest court, even if you meant it as a joke. You shouldn't be so cavalier with your immortal essence. I spied it between a wad of chewing gum and a mangled plastic bottle. Anyone could have found this card where it laid half-in, half-out of the gutter with the collected effluvia of a thousand passers-by.

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Three-Minute Fiction
5:17 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

The Shirt

iStockphoto.com

She was cleaning out the closet, looking for items to give to Goodwill, when she found it. It was balled up at the back of the top shelf and had sat, collecting dust, for how long? Eight years? Nine? At least since they'd moved into the house and Will was a baby. It was Ted's old shirt from his single days, part of his "going out" outfit that he thought was so retro hip and cool, but which was really just fugly.

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From Our Listeners
5:09 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

Three-Minute Fiction Readings: 'Litter' And 'The Shirt'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun June 2, 2013 8:18 pm

NPR's Bob Mondello and Susan Stamberg read excerpts of two of the best submissions for Round 11 of our short story contest. They read Litter by Kalad Hovatter of Orange, Calif., and The Shirt by Jennifer Anderson of Shorewood, Wis. You can read their full stories below and find other stories on our Three-Minute Fiction page or on Facebook.

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Author Interviews
5:09 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

Mapping 'The World' Of A Remote Afghan Village

In Oqa, Afghanistan, Boston weaves a saddlebag for her husband's donkey. The weavers of Oqa also weave large carpets, earning less than $1 a day for their work.
Courtesy Anna Badkhen

Originally published on Sun June 2, 2013 8:18 pm

When freelance journalist Anna Badkhen returned to Afghanistan in 2011, she set her eyes on a region so remote it doesn't exist on Google Maps.

In her new book, The World Is A Carpet: Four Seasons in an Afghan Village, Badkhen chronicles her time in Oqa - a rural, rainless village of 240 people and "40 doorless huts."

For many of its residents, survival hinges on the fingers of women and children. They engage in the local tradition of carpet weaving, earning about 40 cents a day for carpets that eventually sell for $5,000 to $20,000 abroad.

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The Two-Way
4:48 pm
Sun June 2, 2013

Darrell Issa Calls White House Press Secretary A 'Paid Liar'

California Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, questioning Attorney General Eric Holder last week.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Rep. Darrell Issa, a Republican from California, took a heavy shot at White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today on CNN.

Issa said Carney was a "paid liar." He said Carney was "making things up" when he said the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups was undertaken by "rogue" local employees.

The review, said Issa, was "coordinated directly from headquarters in Washington."

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