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The coronavirus pandemic continues to claim thousands of lives a week — mostly people who aren't vaccinated. But that's not stopping a major gathering of anti-vaccine advocates and conspiracy theorists in Nashville, Tenn., this weekend.

The event is being orchestrated by Tennessee couple Ty and Charlene Bollinger. They have been labeled as some of the nation's biggest vaccine misinformation superspreaders.

Just before the pandemic, Nitin Bajaj and his wife, Nimisha Lotia, rented an apartment they own in Los Angeles to two young women.

"They were really nice to talk to," Lotia says.

But as soon as the pandemic hit, the new renters, both in their late 20s, stopped paying the rent. Lotia says the young women sent them an email saying that COVID-19 had created a financial hardship and that the city had just imposed an eviction ban — so the renters couldn't be evicted.

In politics, it's often said that demography is destiny.

But the Virginia governor's race on Nov. 2 — the first big electoral test of the Biden presidency — is the latest warning of the potential peril in assuming which way key demographic groups will vote, or if they will vote at all.

"I don't believe that demographics are destiny," said Luis Aguilar, Virginia director for CASA in Action, the political arm of immigrant advocacy group CASA. "It's about a culture of civic engagement."

Updated October 25, 2021 at 11:51 AM ET

Democratic leaders are scrambling to finalize a detailed framework for their domestic policy bill that sweeps up all of President Biden's top priorities After months of infighting, there is a new sense of urgency and optimism that a deal is within reach — or at least a framework for one — that could pass the House and Senate later this fall.

A Moroccan-American man was shot and killed while sitting in his car in the early morning hours on Oct. 11 in Martindale, Texas, about 40 miles outside of Austin.

Adil Dghoughi, 31, was parked in a rural neighborhood late at night. According to local reports, Dghoughi was shot through the window of the car and died on the scene.

After a turbulent summer in which she withdrew from most of her events at the Olympics and gave emotional testimony before Congress about being abused by a team doctor, Simone Biles says she is "still scared to do gymnastics."

Former Apple program manager Janneke Parrish received some unwelcome news last month from her manager on the messaging app Slack.

"I was told that I was under investigation," she said.

Someone had leaked to the press details of a company meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook and an internal memo warning against leaking. Parrish denies any involvement, but Apple had its suspicions. It confiscated her phone and other devices, she said.

Shortly after, Apple reached a decision.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is backing the roll out of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine boosters in line with the Food and Drug Administration's authorizations issued Wednesday. The CDC is also supporting a mix-and-match approach to booster vaccination.

CDC director Rochelle Walensky called the recommendations an "example of our fundamental commitment to protect as many people as possible from COVID-19."

The announcement came just hours after the CDC's vaccine advisory committee voted unanimously in favor of booster doses.

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Boo! Where are the Halloween costumes?

Oct 21, 2021

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Karen Watkins works in supply chain management and has two children in public school in Gwinnett County, Ga. She's one of those moms who has always been very involved in her kids' education. So much so that local officials urged her to run for school board last year.

"They said, 'This is probably going to be a good thing for you and you can probably make a difference.' ... But I didn't realize it came with a package, a big package," she says with a rueful laugh.

The Federal Reserve is imposing new restrictions on investments by its senior officials as it seeks to address a controversy involving trades made by two regional Fed bank presidents last year.

The new rules prohibit policymakers and senior staff at the Fed from buying individual stocks. They're also barred from holding individual bonds as well as other market products including derivatives or any investments involving government-backed securities.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved a criminal contempt report against Steve Bannon, an ally of former President Donald Trump, for defying a subpoena from a House panel probing the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The 229-202 vote in the Democratic-controlled chamber was largely along party lines, with nine GOP members joining Democrats.

It followed a day of contentious debate, with Democrats and Republicans trading barbs.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said he had previously offered to change his political party affiliation to independent if he were an "embarrassment" to his Democratic colleagues.

"I said, me being a moderate centrist Democrat — if that causes you a problem, let me know and I'd switch to be independent," he told Capitol Hill reporters Thursday.

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So much ails Congress these days - disagreements over President Biden's domestic agenda and the January 6 insurrection. Well, NPR's Barbara Sprunt found some unexpected bipartisan cooperation brewing on Capitol Hill over beer.

Julie Green, an artist known for painting the last meals of death row inmates on hundreds of plates over several decades, died earlier this month. Green was 60.

Green gained notoriety for an ongoing project, entitled The Last Supper, which consisted of hundreds of plates painted with the last meals requested by U.S. prisoners who were scheduled to be executed.

Among the dishes inmates asked for: a stuffed-crust meat lover's pizza, an apple pie, shrimp, ice cream, a Coke.

Rochelle dos Santos learned that her daughter would probably be born with microcephaly — a condition where a baby's head is much smaller than expected — when she was seven months pregnant. It was 2016 and Brazil was going through an unprecedented microcephaly outbreak associated with the mosquito-borne virus Zika.

On Wednesday afternoon, Enes Kanter, a center for the Boston Celtics, traded his uniform for a t-shirt bearing an image of the Dalai Lama, and read a pro-Tibet message that has prompted Chinese broadcasters to take the Celtics off the air in China.

"My message for the Chinese government is 'Free Tibet.' Tibet belongs to Tibetans," Kanter said in the video, describing restrictions, imprisonment and "cultural genocide" he attributed to Chinese rule and calling Chinese President Xi Jinping a "brutal dictator."

For older people and people with disabilities, solving everyday practical problems can be the difference between being able to live at home or being forced to move to an institution. Sometimes people need help getting dressed or making meals. Sometimes they need help managing medications or shopping for groceries.

Johnson & Johnson is drawing criticism after using a controversial bankruptcy maneuver to block roughly 38,000 lawsuits linked to claims that its talc baby powder was contaminated with cancer-causing asbestos.

The health products giant used a quirk of Texas state law to spin off a new company called LTL, then dumped all its asbestos-related liabilities — including the avalanche of lawsuits — into the new firm.

Banished from major social media platforms, former President Donald Trump has announced plans to form a public company that will launch a long-anticipated social platform of his own, claiming to create a space to "stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech."

The press release announcing the platform, TRUTH Social, has a familiar Trumpian confidence, but the sustainability and many details of the venture are unclear.

Actor Oscar Isaac was middle school-age in 1992 when Hurricane Andrew swept through his hometown, blowing the roof off his Florida home. He remembers holding his dog and huddling with his family under some cushions in the living room as water rose up to his ankles.

Some 2,000 Amazon warehouse workers on Staten Island have signed a call for unionization, according to organizers who on Monday plan to ask federal labor officials to authorize a union vote.

Drone operators were preparing to launch a daring rescue mission to carry several dogs out of a volcano's lava zone when they realized something had changed: All of the dogs were already gone.

It was apparently the work of a group of mysterious rescuers who left a spray-painted banner reading, "The dogs are fine." The message was signed "A Team."

The dogs' plight has made headlines for weeks after emergency teams realized the animals had been stranded by lava from a volcano's prolonged eruption on the island of La Palma, Spain.

The world's largest movie theater chain is adding onscreen captions at hundreds of U.S. locations in an effort to make moviegoing more accessible.

AMC Theatres announced last Friday that 240 of its locations — in more than 100 U.S. markets — are adding open captioning to certain showings. The change took effect last week and is aimed at improving the viewing experience for people who have hearing loss and for whom English is not their first language.

This is a tale of two Jackson, Mississippis.

There's Jackson, the state capital, run historically by white conservatives. Then there's Jackson, the 82 percent Black city, run by a mayor wanting to make it "the most radical city on the planet."

February's winter storm and water crisis provided just the latest high profile example of the two Jackson's clashing. State and local governments have made a pastime out of pointing fingers at each other for the city's woes, from crime to potholes to urban blight.

Updated October 21, 2021 at 2:03 PM ET

Attorney General Merrick Garland deflected questions about whether the Justice Department is investigating legal violations by former President Donald Trump and about the reach of the ongoing probe into the U.S. Capitol riots on Jan. 6 at his first congressional oversight hearing since he arrived to run the Justice Department seven months ago.

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