American folk singer and activist Pete Seeger (left) adopted and helped popularize "We Shall Overcome" by teaching the song at rallies and protests. Here he sings with activists in Greenwood, Miss., in 1963.
As the nation marks the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, All Things Considered concludes its series about the moments that defined the historic summer of 1963. Back in 1999, Noah Adams explored the history and legacy of the song "We Shall Overcome" for the NPR 100. The audio link contains a condensed version of that piece.
Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 8:41 pm
There would be no last call on the day of the March on Washington, and Manny and Mitzie Landsman had no choice in the matter. Their D.C. shop, Metro Liquors, was closed for business on Aug. 28, 1963, just one of 1,900 businesses ordered by local authorities not to sell, pour or wrap any alcoholic beverage from 12:01 that morning until 2 a.m. the next day.
Chinese officials hope to rein in teachers who assign too much homework, as the country's Ministry of Education considers new rules that ban schools from requiring students to complete written tasks at home. Citing undue stress on students, the ministry would also limit the number of exams students take.
Originally published on Sun September 1, 2013 8:34 am
When you go to the Dead Sea for a float in its extraordinarily buoyant waters, signs warn you not to drink a drop. "Did you swallow water?" one Dead Sea do's and don'ts list asks. "Go immediately to the lifeguard."
Mental disorders and substance abuse are the leading causes of nonfatal illness on the planet, according to an ambitious analysis of data from around the world.
A companion report, the first of its kind, documents the global impact of four illicit drugs: heroin and other opiates, amphetamines, cocaine and cannabis. It calls illegal drugs "an important contributor to the global burden of disease."
The two papers are being published by The Lancet as part of a continuing project called the Global Burden of Disease.
The Obama administration appears poised to attack Syria after concluding Bashar Assad's government used chemical weapons, but many members of Congress say they haven't been briefed enough about why military action is warranted.
Opinions about Syria are all over the map, with many lawmakers saying the president cannot proceed without first getting authorization from Congress.
Melissa Block has an exit interview with Kelly McEvers, who's ending a grueling years-long assignment in the Middle East that included coverage of Iraq, Syria and beyond. McEvers and her NPR colleague Deborah Amos, won four major awards in 2012 for coverage of the Syrian conflict.
Robert Siegel talks with Republican Representative Mike J. Rogers, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, about his briefing on evidence regarding the chemical attack in Syria, and whether he still has questions about whether the Syrian government is responsible or not.
Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 5:23 pm
Army psychiatrist Maj. Nidal Hasan has been sentenced to death by a military jury. The same jury found Hasan guilty last week of killing 13 people in a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in 2009. Hasan also wounded more than 30 others in the attack.
We'll add more details as news emerges.
Update at 3:40 p.m. ET: Tossed From Army; Appeals Automatic
St. Louis is about to get something it hasn't had in 152 years: control of its own police force.
Thanks to a statewide ballot measure approved last fall, Missouri officially hands over the keys to the squad cars on Sunday.
It's only right for the city, which spends $180 million annually on cops, to take command, says Maggie Crane, director of communications for Mayor Francis Slay. "This is really just an antiquated system that needed to be changed," she says.