William Roman wants to borrow money, but his bank won't lend him any more. So he's turning to his local pawn shop.
For Roman, a loan from the pawn shop is a lot easier to get. He doesn't have to fill out an application. The people at the pawn shop don't check his credit — all they want is something valuable, something they call sell if Roman doesn't pay them back.
"I've pawned laptops, PlayStations," says Roman. "If I'm not using it, then I'll just go and pawn it."
There's no shortage of R-rated male buddy comedies, but this summer's raunchy flick — complete with drinking, sex and swimming pools — isn't one of them. TheTo Do List, written and directed by Maggie Carey and starring Aubrey Plaza, chronicles the coming-of-age, sexual escapades of a teenage girl.
From madness to seizures, to crime and lack of sleep, people have long blamed the full moon for a range of problems. Research, on the other hand, has found little evidence over the years to support these anecdotal accounts of the moon's powers over the human body and brain.
But scientists in Switzerland decided to look again at one of those putative effects — disturbed sleep — and were surprised to see there might be something to the claim after all.
The financial crisis in Greece has devastated the country's manufacturing sector, which has lost more than 30 percent of its jobs in the past three years. But at one factory in an industrial center in the north, workers have taken matters into their own hands.
Inside the cavernous factory on the outskirts of Thessaloniki, eight middle-aged men are filling bottles with a vinegar-based fabric softener that's scented with fresh lavender.
Twenty-two years ago this summer, Bryan Lindsay was riding his bike when he was hit by a van and almost killed. He was 7 years old.
Rowan Allen was the paramedic on the scene that day. "When the call came in, it was just before my shift ended that day," Rowan recalls on a visit to StoryCorps in New York. "The first instinct was, 'Oh man, right before we get off.' And then the dispatcher comes back on the air and he says, 'Child struck.' That just changes everything. And luckily, we were just a couple blocks away.
Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department will ask a federal court to subject Texas to the same kind of scrutiny that was required of it by a section of the Voting Rights Act struck down last month by the Supreme Court.
In Shelby County v. Holder, the high court rescinded Section 5 of the 1965 act, which required several states including Texas that had a history of voter discrimination to get "pre-clearance" from the federal government before changing their election laws.
Phillip Agnew was blindsided by the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. The decision came down late on a Saturday night. Agnew was expecting the neighborhood watchman who killed Trayvon Martin to be found guilty.
Agnew, 28, leads a group of young activists called the Dream Defenders, which formed in Florida last year in the weeks following Trayvon's shooting death. It was one of the many groups that sprouted up in cities across the country in response to the shooting.
In an interview with ABC News, the only minority in the all-female jury that acquitted George Zimmerman with the killing of Trayvon Martin said Zimmerman "got away with murder."
"You can't put the man in jail even though in our hearts we felt he was guilty," said Juror B29, who identified herself as Maddy. "But we had to grab our hearts and put it aside and look at the evidence."
The 36-year-old mother of eight is Puerto Rican and had recently moved to Sanford from Chicago.
Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 11:44 am
Come summertime, some of us here at Shots are reminded, as we lounge on decks and venture into overgrown gardens, that we are irresistible to mosquitoes. As we gripe about our itchy, pocked limbs, we can't help but wonder just why they unfailingly devour us and pass over our friends and loved ones. And when it comes to repellent, it's hard to tell just what works best.
The news out of Detroit has been grim of late, but there are some bright spots coming from one corner of the Motor City. On Thursday, General Motors posted its 14th straight profitable quarter since emerging from bankruptcy. Ford announced its 16th consecutive profitable quarter Wednesday, and Chrysler is expected to offer good news soon as well.
North Carolina could become the first state to compensate people who were forcibly sterilized in programs across the country that began during the Great Depression and continued for decades, targeting individuals deemed feeble-minded or otherwise unfit.
In a proposed budget, lawmakers have set aside $10 million for one-time payments to an estimated 1,500 people still alive who were part of a state program that sterilized 7,600 men, women and children from 1929 to 1974. The amount of each payout would be determined by how many people came forward.
Army Ranger Justin Slaby served two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan. While he was back in the U.S. preparing to deploy for a fourth tour, his left hand was blown off by a faulty grenade in a training accident. After being fitted with a state-of-the-art prosthesis, Slaby was encouraged by one of his doctors to try for a career in the FBI. What happened next has landed the ex-Ranger and the FBI in court and already tarnished the career of a high-ranking agent.
You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.
In the early 1900s, more than half of the states in the U.S. passed laws allowing people to be sterilized against their will. North Carolina's eugenics program was particularly aggressive. Some 7,600 men, women and children were sterilized often because they were poor or mentally ill.
Now, North Carolina has done more than any other state to make amends, as we hear from Julie Rose of member station WFAE.
In the high-profile civil case against Wall Street titan Steven Cohen, federal authorities accuse the hedge fund head of allowing insider trading within his ranks. Cohen's lawyers offered up a defense fit for the digital age: They claim he didn't see a key, incriminating email because he gets too many messages — an estimated 1,000 a day, and opens only 11 percent of them.
During the fourth day of his first foreign visit, Pope Francis headed to the Varginha favela in Rio de Janeiro.
As NPR's Lourdes Garcia Navarro described it to our Newscast unit, the shantytown was not prettied up for the pope. Its river remained clogged with sewage and dirt, and the houses were still slapped together.
"It's an extremely poor community," Lourdes said. "I think the pope wanted to come here to highlight his very personal message of affinity with the poor."
Willie Louis may be one of the most celebrated but least-known figures in a pivotal point in American history: He testified against the men accused of kidnapping and murdering 14-year-old Emmett Till. He died July 18, but his wife, Juliet, announced his death this week.
Each morning as dawn breaks over the Bosphorus Strait in Turkey, a small drama repeats itself: Massive oil tankers and cargo ships slide past tiny fishing boats bobbing on the surface like bathtub toys.
These intrepid fishermen are out in all weather, in all seasons. In the winter, they catch the rich, oily anchovies, bluefish and mackerel. With spring come the turbot and sea bream, and by summer, sea bass and red mullet are being hawked by the fishmongers.
Democrat Anthony Weiner's path to the New York City mayor's office got a lot more complicated Thursday, just two days after he asserted that new revelations of his lewd online conduct would not chase him from the race for his party's nomination.
With their announcement of His Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge wasted little time putting to rest speculation about the name of the U.K.'s newest royal. (And that speculation was rife — bookies in the United Kingdom had been doing brisk business on baby name wagers for weeks.)
After what is rumored to be a multimillion-dollar naming deal, the iconic Cowboys Stadium will be called AT&T Stadium from now on.
In a press release, AT&T said part of its attraction to the deal was that Dallas is the company's home. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said in a statement that the naming deal ties the team with "one of the world's strongest and most innovative companies."
After writing books and essays about end-of-life issues, and advocating for the right to die, bioethicist Margaret Battin is wrestling with the issue in her own family. Her husband, Brooke Hopkins, an English professor at the University of Utah, where she also teaches, broke his neck in a bicycle accident in 2008, leaving him with quadriplegia and dependent on life support technology. In order to breathe, he requires a ventilator some of the time and a diaphragmatic pacer all the time. He receives his nutrition through a feeding tube.
When Detroit filed for federal bankruptcy protection last week, news accounts were filled with troubling stories of urban decay in the city: vast areas of vacant lots and abandoned houses, shuttered parks, nonworking streetlights and police response times close to an hour.
Three of the station's staffers who were at work when KTVU-TV of Oakland broadcast obviously bogus and incredibly offensive names of what it said were the pilots of Asiana Flight 214 have been dismissed and more departures may soon follow.
All hands from the tall ship Astrid were safe on Thursday after the vessel, with nearly two dozen teenagers aboard, ran aground on the rocky south coast of Ireland.
The Astrid, a 136-foot, two-masted Dutch training ship, issued a "mayday" on Wednesday after it ran up on the rocks near Kinsale, County Cork, prompting what the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, or RNLI, described as a major air and sea rescue.