We've all been there, out and about when nature calls. But public restrooms aren't easy to find and businesses have those customers-only signs. This is where AirPNP comes in. It's an app that connects full bladders with bathroom owners willing to share their facilities with strangers, for a small fee. Must have made Mardi Gras a much more pleasant experience this week; 29 people in New Orleans did advertise their porcelain palaces. The going rate, about three bucks.
Armed men in unmarked military uniforms — who witnesses believe are Russian troops, but who Russian leaders say are "local self-defense" forces — stand outside the territory of a Ukrainian military unit in the Crimean village of Perevalnoye.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said all sides agree that the crisis on the Crimean Peninsula must be resolved through dialogue, but he acknowledged there has yet to be one-on-one discussions between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Ukrainian counterpart.
Over the last few years an unusual phenomenon has kept popping up in public opinion surveys: Blacks and Latinos have become much more sanguine about the country's prospects as white folks have become more pessimistic. It's a stark reversal of decades of data in which white folks were almost always more optimistic.
From Caracas to Kiev, protesters are organizing with the help of a social media tool called Zello. The walkie-talkie-like app allows smartphone users to send short voice messages from person to person or to a small group of people. And one key factor that's making Zello the go-to app among protesters, anonymity, something they don't get from Facebook or Twitter.
BILL MOORE: We've had multiple requests from authorities for information. And one way to solve it, in fact the way we solve is we just don't, we don't retain information.
Steve Inskeep has begun a journey along the U.S.-Mexico border — from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. NPR reporters are also pursuing stories of people, goods and culture crossing the border. Over the next two weeks, the team will be sharing impressions at NPR's On The Road blog as it prepares stories to broadcast on Morning Edition and other NPR programs in late March.
An intense campaign is underway for the future of the United Kingdom. On Sept. 18, the people of Scotland will vote on whether to become an independent country. Here are answers to a few key questions about the issue.
1. Why would Scotland want to leave the U.K.?
There are some reasons grounded in logic, and others based in emotion.
Iranian women, shown here in downtown Tehran, are among groups in the country pushing for social and economic change.
Credit Ebrahim Noroozi / AP
An Iranian woman holds her child at the Mofid Children's Hospital in Tehran, Iran. Having curbed birth rates for two decades, Iran is once again promoting a baby boom to help make up for its graying population.
Iran is starting to see a re-launch of activist groups following the election last year of President Hassan Rouhani. Social movements were scarce after the government crushed public protests known as the Green Movement following the 2009 elections. After the decisive vote for Rouhani, a surge of hope in Iran has attracted activists back to the political arena. Iranian women, in particular, are seizing the opportunity.
A judge held an unusual hearing in New Jersey on Tuesday: a lawsuit brought by an 18-year-old who says her parents kicked her out of their house. Rachel Canning is seeking to force her parents to give her financial support and money for college, in addition to pay for tuition at her private school.
Superior Court Family Division Judge Peter Bogaard, who heard the case in Morristown, N.J., on Tuesday afternoon, denied Canning's requests in what's seen as the first round of hearings in the case.
RadioShack said Tuesday it will close 1,100 retail stores across the country amid a disappointing fourth quarter, in a sign that the electronics retailer is ceding ever-more market share to big box stores and online providers, such as Amazon.
CEO Joseph Magnacca said the closings would leave the company with more than 4,000 U.S. stores still operating. RadioShack did not say which of its stores it planned to shutter.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a federal whistleblower law, enacted after the collapse of Enron Corporation, protects not just the employees of a public company, but also company contractors like lawyers, accountants, and investment funds.
Writing for the six-justice majority, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that in enacting the Sarbanes-Oxley law in 2002, Congress provided protection from retaliation for employees and contractors alike to ensure that they would not be intimidated into silence when they knew of corporate wrongdoing.
The District of Columbia Council moved Tuesday to decriminalize some use of marijuana.
The Washington Post reports Mayor Vincent Gray said he intends to sign the bill into law, pitting the district directly against the federal government, which still considers smoking marijuana a criminal offense.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.
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And I'm Melissa Block.
For years, people in the military had a lower rate of suicide than their civilian counterparts. About 10 years ago that started to change and now the rate is worse for soldiers than civilians. That prompted the largest-ever study of suicide among soldiers, in cooperation with the National Institutes of Health. The study is on-going, but three initial articles have been published.
It's testing time in Illinois today. Hundreds of thousands of students began taking state tests in math and science but some students, parents, even teachers are refusing. At dozens of schools in Chicago, they're staging a boycott, saying the tests don't matter. As NPR's Cheryl Corley reports, it's part of a growing national debate over measuring student performance.
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP: Boycott the ISAT. Let things be. Boycott the ISAT.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh says he's still hopeful for a deal allowing a gay group to march in South Boston's St. Patrick's Day Parade. Organizers say talks to include gay groups for the first time in two decades have fallen apart. Walsh, the son of Irish immigrants, is still trying to bring the sides together.
NPR's Tovia Smith reports.
TOVIA SMITH, BYLINE: Gay rights activists called it historic that they were even talking to parade organizers. But now, chances for a deal are slipping.
Troops under Russian command scream orders to turn back before firing warning shots at the Belbek airbase in Crimea. The troops were reacting to a large group of unarmed Ukrainian troops who approached them.
Ukrainians line up to get money from a bank machine in the western city of Lviv on Feb. 20. The country's political crisis has also created economic turmoil. The international community is expected to pump billions of dollars into Ukraine's struggling economy.
Credit Yuriy Dyachyshyn / AFP/Getty Images
The ousted Ukrainian president, Viktor Yanukovych, had dozens of luxury cars at his country estate outside the capital, Kiev. Ukraine has been plagued by widespread corruption and an economy that is near bankruptcy.
Ukraine was known as the breadbasket of the Soviet Union for its fertile fields of wheat. Now it's just a basket case. The outgoing finance minister said the country needed $35 billion to stave off bankruptcy over the next couple years.
Some analysts say that figure may be on the high side. Still, such admissions usually send potential donors dashing for the exits. Yet one thing Ukraine has in abundance these days, in addition to political turmoil, is a long line of financial suitors.
This is FRESH AIR. We're going to remember Justin Kaplan, the Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer who also edited the 16th edition of "Bartlett's Familiar Quotations," published in 1992 and the 17th edition, published in 2002. Justin Kaplan died Sunday at the age 88. His first book, a 1966 biography of Mark Twain, won a National Book Award, as well as a Pulitzer Prize. He also wrote biographies of Walt Whitman and Lincoln Steffens.