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Voter ID Laws: Necessity Or Burden?

A wave of states are implementing or considering laws that would require a government photo ID to vote. Some say the laws could disenfranchise voters, others say ID is required for basic needs. Host Michel Martin talks with journalist Kristal Brent Zook and Abigail Thernstrom of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.
NPR

Why Is The World's Largest Foundation Buying Fake Poop?

The Gates Foundation has granted engineers more than $3 million to develop cheap, high-tech toilets that don't need water or electricity. To test these supercommodes, the foundation has purchased 50 pounds of soybean paste that resembles human waste.
NPR

Consumer Bureau Moves To Make Mortgages Clearer, Foreclosures Fewer

The new rules would help eliminate surprises and make the mortgage loan process easier to understand, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says. It's also moving to give homeowners more protection when mortgage companies try to foreclose.
NPR

Smoked Chocolate, For National S'More Day And More

If you can't get to a campfire to roast s'mores today, check out some smoked chocolate. Smoking chocolate is a technique that takes time and precision, but has produced some tasty results for former Girl Scout Autumn Martin and her Seattle bakery.
NPR

Drought Deepens In Hardest Hit Parts Of U.S.

The size of the area where the drought is judged to be "exceptional" (the worst rating) grew again. So did those stretches where the drought is said to be "severe" or "extreme."
NPR

Coming Up: Friday's Olympic Best Bets

Track and field will hold eight of today's 17 medal events, as the Summer Olympics moves into its final weekend. The U.S. men's basketball team plays to get into the gold medal game, and the day's highlights also include an intriguing men's soccer bronze-medal match between South Korea and Japan.
NPR

In Wisconsin, Thousands Pay Homage To Sikh Temple Shooting Victims

After a public wake and visitation this morning, members of the temple that was attacked will gather for an "akhand path." During that rite, priests will read aloud the religion's holy book. It will take about 48 hours.
NPR

Doing The Write Thing In Portland, Maine

The Telling Room engages with communities that are underserved by the public school system and inspires young people in Portland to explore the pleasures of the written word.
NPR

Sikh Shooting Puts Focus On Hate Groups At Home

The attack at a Sikh temple by a gunman with ties to white supremacists has raised questions about domestic terrorism — and what law enforcement is doing to stop it. In recent years, the Internet, the worsening economy and changing demographic patterns have given new voice to hate groups.

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