Law
11:29 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Attorneys For Oklahoma Death Row Inmates Seek To Halt Executions

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The Two-Way
9:09 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Obama Unveils 'New Approach' On Cuba As Former Foes Chart New Course

President Obama announced Wednesday that the U.S. will work with Cuba to normalize diplomatic ties.
Doug Mills UPI /Landov

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 2:41 pm

Updated at 2:39 p.m. ET

President Obama announced today the most significant change in U.S. policy toward Cuba in more than 50 years, paving the way for the normalization of relations and the opening of a U.S. Embassy in Havana.

Obama said "we will end an outdated approach that for decades has failed to advance our interests and instead we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries."

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Local News
8:26 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Headlines: Open Records, ObamaCare & Tort Reform

Headlines for Wednesday, December 17, 2014:

  • The State Supreme Court says the Governor has the authority to withhold documents from the people. (NewsOK)

  • Governor Fallin is accepting a $2 million grant through the Affordable Care Act. (Oklahoma Watch)

  • The State Supreme Court strikes down part of a Tort Reform law passed in 2011. (Tulsa World)

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NPR Ed
3:42 am
Wed December 17, 2014

An Alternative To Suspension And Expulsion: 'Circle Up!'

A restorative justice circle at Edna Brewer Middle School in Oakland, Calif.
Sam Pasarow/Edna Brewer Middle School

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 11:29 am

One by one, in a room just off the gym floor at Edna Brewer Middle School in Oakland, Calif., seventh-graders go on the interview hot seat.

Some 80 students have applied to be "peer leaders" in the school's new, alternative discipline program called "restorative justice."

Kyle McClerkins, the program's director, grills them on aspects of adolescent life: "What is the biggest challenge for middle school girls? What has changed about you from sixth grade to now?"

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Sample Size
5:43 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Best of 2014: Parker Millsap, Colourmusic & Broncho

Parker Millsap

Welcome to Sample Size, where KOSU's Ryan LaCroix and LOOKatOKC pop music columnist Matt Carney team up each week to discuss music news and new music releases.

Today, we look back at some of our favorite tracks from Oklahoma musicians in 2014, including Parker Millsap, Colourmusic, and Broncho.

Follow Matt & Ryan on Twitter at @OKmattcarney and @KOSUryan.

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Around the Nation
5:35 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

On Nebraska's Farmland, Keystone XL Pipeline Debate Is Personal

Susan and Bill Dunavan own 80 acres of land in York County.
Melissa Block NPR

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 2:46 pm

Drive down gravel Road 22 in Nebraska's York County, past weathered farmhouses and corn cut to stubble in rich, black loam soil, and you'll find a small barn by the side of the road.

Built of native ponderosa pine, the barn is topped with solar panels. A windmill spins furiously out front.

Known as the Energy Barn, it's a symbol of renewable energy, standing smack on the proposed route of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline — a project of the energy giant TransCanada.

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JenX with Jennifer James
8:50 am
Tue December 16, 2014

The Future of Gen Xers and Their Kids

The future of Generation X looks bleak especially as we get closer to retirement.

But what about the children of Generation X?


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Local News
8:42 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Headlines: Capitol Repairs, Devon Donations & Blood Shortage

Headlines for Tuesday, December 16, 2014:

  • The state Supreme Court gives its stamp of approval on a $120 million bond for capitol repairs. (NewsOK)

  • The people of Enid want more choices when it comes to eating out. (Journal Record)

  • An investigation shows Devon poured nearly $1 million into GOP campaigns for statewide office. (Tulsa World)

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Law
4:39 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Judge Regrets Harsh Human Toll Of Mandatory Minimum Sentences

The shocking death of basketball player Len Bias from a cocaine overdose in 1986 led Congress to pass tough mandatory sentences for drug crimes.
AP

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 3:08 pm

It seems long ago now, but in the 1960s, '70s and '80s, murders and robberies exploded as cocaine and other illegal drugs ravaged American cities.

Then came June 19, 1986, when the overdose of a college athlete sent the nation into shock just days after the NBA draft. Basketball star Len Bias could have been anybody's brother or son.

Congress swiftly responded by passing tough mandatory sentences for drug crimes. Those sentences, still in place, pack federal prisons to this day. More than half of the 219,000 federal prisoners are serving time for drug offenses.

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U.S. News
3:26 am
Tue December 16, 2014

President's Task Force To Re-Examine How Police Interact With Public

President Obama announces the creation of a policing task force Dec. 1 as Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey (left) and George Mason University criminology professor Laurie Robinson look on.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 3:09 pm

Earlier this month, after the events in Ferguson, Mo., and Staten Island, N.Y, the White House announced the creation of what it's calling a Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

The group's job is to find ways to strengthen the relationship between police and the public, and to share recommendations with the president by late February.

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