Jose Rodriguez and Charles Zelinsky at StoryCorps in Trenton, N.J. Jose is now a Special Olympics coach — he'll be overseeing games this weekend.
Credit Courtesy of of Charles Zelinsky
Champions: The New Jersey basketball team -- including Jose Rodriguez (kneeling, second from right) -- poses for the cameras after winning the gold medal at the Special Olympics National Games in 2010.
States around the country are hosting their regional Special Olympics games this summer. In New Jersey, the games' opening ceremonies begin Friday.
Jose Rodriguez participated in the New Jersey Special Olympics back in 2003, when he was 13. Special Olympics offers a chance for people with intellectual disabilities to pursue a sport. Jose has trouble learning — mostly through reading and writing.
Speaking at StoryCorps, Jose, 23, told his former basketball coach, Charles Zelinsky, 57, what his life was like before he found the games.
Two former House speakers in Pennsylvania are proving politics doesn't have to be partisan. Democrat Bill DeWeese was convicted on corruption charges and began serving time at a prison near Harrisburg. He was approached by his former legislative rival, Republican John Perzel to room together.
NPR's business news starts with NASDAQ compensating clients.
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MONTAGNE: The NASDAQ stock exchange will pay $40 million in compensation for botched trades that occurred during Facebook's initial public offering. NASDAQ clients lost millions of dollars on Facebook's May IPO because of computer glitches. The opening trade was delayed by more than half an hour, and many investors were unsure if their trades had gone through.
We're going to hear now about some surprising consequences of the weak housing market in this country. It turns out that the value - even on a paper - of a home can affect the college choices that a family makes.
NPR science correspondent Shankar Vedantam regularly joins us to discuss social science research. He's here this morning to talk about those new findings. And good morning.
Google has fired the first shot in what might come to be known as the map wars. Yesterday, the company unveiled new features, such as maps in 3D. Google made its move just five days before Apple is expected to announce its own new and improved mapping software.
Google made its move just five days before Apple is expected to announce its own, new and improved mapping software. NPR's Laura Sydell reports.
The need to store digital information is growing. Tens of thousands of new jobs are expected to be created over the next six years to take full advantage of that ocean of information known as big data.
It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm David Greene.
We'll begin this program with the aftermath of Tuesday's recall election in Wisconsin. Public sector unions took on Republican Governor Scott Walker, and the governor won. Walker became the first U.S. governor to beat back a recall attempt. The unions had spent a lot time, money and political capital in Wisconsin.
NPR's Sonari Glinton reports on what's next for organized labor.
Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta is in Kabul, Afghanistan. He arrived this morning for a quick, unannounced visit with troops and also to check in on the progress of the war. Panetta's trip comes a day after a Taliban attack in southern Afghanistan left over 20 dead and at least 50 people wounded. Also yesterday, NATO forces were being blamed for allegedly killing civilians in an early morning strike.
When Ray Bradbury died this week, he was hailed as one of science fiction's great writers. Best known for works like "The Martian Chronicles," Bradbury himself didn't think science fiction was a good label for his work. He said science fiction was about what could happen, and believed most of his work was actually fantasy. And yet, in the real world of space exploration, Bradbury was revered. Science writer Andrew Chaikin, for one, considers Bradbury the poet laureate of space exploration.
Iranians line up at a gas station to fuel their motorcycles in central Tehran in February. Oil is the lifeblood of Iran's economy, but the planned EU boycott is expected to deal a major blow to Iranian oil exports.
On July 1, the European Union says it will stop buying oil from Iran. Europe is one of the most important markets for Iran's oil, and in anticipation of the boycott, Iranian oil exports worldwide are already down by more than 25 percent.
Iran's leaders say they can weather this pressure, and so far they have refused to budge on their controversial nuclear activities, ones that prompted a series of economic sanctions.
As a result, it appears as if Iran will only face even greater difficulties when it comes to exporting oil, the lifeblood of its economy.
The year began with New Year's resolutions to get fit and ever since, Morning Edition has been talking to athletes, musicians, a mail carrier and the head of the IRS about the music that gets them moving. The Ultimate NPR Workout Mix series concludes with a contribution from Michelle Obama.
The first lady is the mover and shaker behind "Let's Move," a campaign designed to get young people, in particular, to eat better and exercise more.
During a recent tour of the White House vegetable garden, Obama shared the key to her workout routine.
Imagine a school where every child gets instant, personalized writing help for a fraction of the cost of hiring a human teacher — and where a computer, not a person, grades a student's essays.
It's not so far-fetched. Some schools around the country are already using computer programs to help teach students to write.
There are two big arguments for automated essay scoring: lower expenses and better test grading. Using computers instead of humans would certainly be cheaper, but not everyone agrees on argument No. 2.
The writer, poet and critic Dorothy Parker was technically not a native New Yorker; she was born at her family's beach cottage in New Jersey. But she always considered New York City to be her beloved hometown. It's where she grew up, where she struggled during her early days as a writer, where she became famous, and where she died of a heart attack at the age of 73.
Children who get CT scans are at slightly increased risk for brain cancer and leukemia, according to a large international study released Tuesday.
CT scans create detailed images of the inside of the body. So they're great for diagnosing all sorts of medical problems — so great that their use has soared in recent years. More than 80 million are being done every year in the United States.
Some sad news this morning: The world has lost a literary giant. Author Ray Bradbury died last night after a long illness. He was 91 years old. He wrote such classics as "The Martian Chronicles" and "Fahrenheit 451" - futuristic tales from a man who never used a computer, or even drove a car. NPR's Arnie Seipel has more on Bradbury and his curious life.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Eight thousand people will carry the Olympic torch before it reaches London to open the summer games, though one would-be torch barer isn't even human. He's a small red fuzzy monster.
KEVIN CLASH: (As Elmo) Elmo's ready to start training to be a monster torch-bearer. Yay. Oh, oh, Cramp, cramp.
Tiny bags of pretzels followed by some kind of rubber mystery meat - for those who fly, you know exactly what I'm talking about: the joys of airplane food. Well, some airlines are now trying to shake things up. They're showcasing some new cuisine in hopes of luring more passengers. But producing food that actually tastes great at cruising altitude is not easy, as NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports.
And our last word in business this morning is: litigious days.
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MONTAGNE: That, of course, is the theme from "Happy Days," the hit sitcom from the 1970s and '80s. These days, not everyone is so happy. Several cast members from the show are battling with CBS and Paramount, for unpaid royalties.
This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
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And I'm Renee Montagne.
Here a couple of the more alarming warnings coming out of the eurozone this week. Greece says it could go broke by July. Spain says it probably can't raise money from investors because they're demanding interest rates that are too high.
Despite all these troubles, one country is still eager to join the eurozone: Latvia. In fact, all three Baltic States remain supportive of the euro.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne.
Wisconsin's combative Governor Scott Walker has survived an attempt to remove him from office. Labor unions, angry over the Republican governor's successful push to strip them of most collective bargaining rights, had battled Scott Walker and hoped Wisconsin voters would oust him.
So far this year, 25 states have ended the Extended Benefits program. That program made sure people out of work for long periods of time continued receiving financial assistance. But there was a catch: if a state's unemployment rate improved, the money would stop flowing. The fact that some states are seeing lower unemployment may seem like a good sign for the economy. It's no comfort to the people who are still out of work.
Now, same-sex marriage is just one reason the Vatican has issued a strong criticism of a book. It's written by a prominent American Catholic theologian, Sister Margaret Farley. That rebuke from the Vatican comes as leaders of an organization of American nuns are in their own dispute with Rome. And to understand what's behind these tensions among Catholics, we called up John Allen, senior correspondent with the National Catholic Reporter.
Just a note for our listeners: Part of this conversation deals with mature themes.
To be perverse, I'd suggest that for the horse-racing industry, it'd be best that I'll Have Another does not — yes, does not — win the Triple Crown this Saturday.
Oh, certainly, absolutely every year you want a horse to win the first two races — the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness — so that suspense builds and a horse has a chance to win the Belmont and take the Triple Crown. But isn't it better to have the potential winner barely get beat so that the losing streak continues, building interest?
If you have a mortgage on your home, you can deduct the interest from your taxes. It's a popular, well-entrenched policy. But according to one policy adviser to a U.S. senator, "the mortgage-interest deduction, from a purely policy perspective ... makes no sense."