Aung San Suu Kyi finally received her honorary degree from Oxford University after it was initially awarded in 1993. In her speech, Suu Kyi praised Oxford for helping her see humankind at its best during her long years under house arrest in Myanmar.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
And I'm Robert Siegel.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee voted today to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. He's accused of refusing to turn over certain documents related to the controversial gun-trafficking operation known as Fast and Furious.
Immigration is, of course, an issue of concern to all Americans, but it's of special concern to Latinos. As David Welna just reported, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials - or NALEO - is holding its annual convention in Orlando. Mitt Romney will speak to the group tomorrow, about his views on immigration policy. And the other headlining speakers? President Obama, Jeb Bush, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and Sen. Marco Rubio are all likely to address the issue.
It's like discovering a distant cousin, a really distant cousin. It's like learning that someone you had barely heard of is actually part of the family. In this case, the family is the Indo-European family of languages. And the umpteenth cousin is a language called Burushaski. It's spoken by about 90,000 people, the Burusho people, and nearly all of them live in Pakistan. A few hundred live in India.
Just to give a sense of what it sounds like, here's a joke in Burushaski that we came across online.
Brad Beadell (right) takes his 11-year-old son, William, on his first backpacking trip through Henry W. Coe State Park in Morgan Hill, Calif.
Credit Melissa Block / NPR
Coe Park is California's second-largest state park, spanning more than 87,000 acres.
Credit Melissa Block / NPR
Dan McCranie (left) hands over a check for $279,000 to Ruth Coleman, director of California State Parks, at a ceremony at Coe Park in May. The amount is the first installment of about $900,000 from the Coe Park Preservation Fund that will keep the park open for three years.
Credit Ron Fischler / Courtesy of Coe Park Preservation Fund
On July 1, 15 California state parks are slated to be closed permanently to the public — the first such closures in the state's history. They're the victim of budget cuts in a state with a $16 billion shortfall.
Over the past year, park enthusiasts have scrambled to save dozens of parks from closure, including Henry W. Coe State Park, California's second-biggest state park, located about 30 miles south of San Jose.
For Langdon Cook, a walk in the woods isn't that different from a walk through the produce section of the supermarket. He's a writer, blogger and all-around outdoorsy type, but in outdoorsy Seattle, he's made his name primarily as a forager.
At any given moment, about 15,000 men and women are living in solitary confinement in the federal prison system, housed in tiny cells not much larger than a king-sized bed.
"It is hard to describe in words what such a small space begins to look like, feel like and smell like when someone is required to live virtually their entire life in it," says Craig Haney, a psychologist at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
But Tuesday, Haney, who has studied life inside prisons for three decades, had an opportunity to paint that picture.
Advocates for prisoners rights say too many inmates spend years in solitary confinement — in violation of the constitutional bar against cruel and unusual punishment. Today, they persuaded the U.S. Senate to hold the first hearing on the issue, as state and federal prison systems fend off new lawsuits over the practice.
The federal government could soon give the final go-ahead for Royal Dutch Shell to begin drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean. Shell has spent $4 billion since 2007 to prepare for this work, and is hoping to tap into vast new deposits of oil.
But the plan to drill exploratory wells is controversial — opposed by environmental groups and some indigenous people as well.