Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

1 hour ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

4 hours ago
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pages

Navy Yard Tragedy Unnerves Mass Shooting Survivors

Sep 19, 2013
Originally published on September 19, 2013 3:12 pm

They never quite get over it.

Whenever there's a mass shooting, a tragedy that occurs with depressing frequency, survivors of earlier events have their own memories brought back vividly and horribly.

Kristina Anderson, one of dozens of people who was shot at Virginia Tech in 2007, now works across the river from Washington, D.C. When the news of the Navy Yard shootings there broke on Monday, her day melted into tears.

It's hard to feel safe when massacres can take place seemingly anywhere — a movie theater or school or even a government building that's supposedly secure.

"For me, it's pretty close to home," Anderson says. "Quickly, I start thinking about the families who are about to be called and the people who are in lockdown in the buildings. I can identify with the feeling of not knowing what's happening."

Not Just About Guns

As the news broke about Monday's shootings, residents of several previously traumatized communities — Aurora, Colo.; Newtown, Conn.; Tucson, Ariz.; Oak Creek, Wis. — were traveling to Washington to lobby Congress for broader background checks on gun sales.

"It brings you back to square A when you see something like what happened at the Navy Yard," Amardeep Kaleka, whose father was killed in the Sikh temple shootings in Oak Creek last year, told a local television station. "You just start to unravel at your core because everything you thought couldn't happen is happening."

The Navy Yard shootings came a week after much of the political media had run obituaries on gun-control efforts, given the recalls of two Colorado state senators who were ousted for having supported stricter gun laws.

"We can debate endlessly about gun issues, but frankly we might get nowhere on it," says Oak Creek Mayor Steve Scaffidi.

But he says something has to be done about recognizing "patterns of violence" in people who might be mentally unstable and potentially capable of going on a murderous rampage. Scaffidi says he and other mayors of towns that have experienced massacres are working on a set of proposals that they hope to present soon to the U.S. Conference of Mayors.

"It's disappointing and discouraging that a country with as many great minds as we have can't lessen the impact of things like this," he says.

Bringing It All Back

Scaffidi says memories of the immediate aftermath of the killings in his town come flooding back after an event like the Navy Yard shootings.

"Obviously, being in Sandy Hook, there's heightened anxiety anytime there's news about a shooting," says Candice Bohr, executive director of Newtown Youth and Family Services, a mental health center.

Phones there have been ringing pretty consistently this week, she says. But there's nothing new about that. She notes that a number of teenagers have been killed recently in car accidents in the area.

"It could be anything," Bohr says. "It's not necessarily a mass shooting that triggers what people have anxiety about."

'Don't Have The Answers'

Survivors of such events are, for the most part, remarkably resilient. Art McDonnell says he's been able to create a "psychological safe zone," a part of his brain where he stores his memories and locks them away.

McDonnell, who is the mayor of Kirkwood, Mo., was serving on the city council of the St. Louis suburb in 2008, when a gunman entered the chamber at City Hall and began firing, killing McDonnell's predecessor, two colleagues on the council and three other individuals.

Almost any loud noise — a car crash, cannons shot off at historical re-enactments — can bring back memories of the shooting McDonnell witnessed.

"It does come forward when you have incidents like this," McDonnell says. "It comes back to you like a quick flashback of everything that happened."

McDonnell belongs to Mayors Against Illegal Guns, but he's not convinced that even ridding the country entirely of guns would end this kind of violence.

"It's not just the gun," he says. "How do we find a way to reach these individuals who perpetrate these horrible crimes? I don't have the answers. I wish I did."

A Renewed Call To Action

There's a danger of becoming inured. There have been so many mass shootings, McDonnell says, that there's a risk individuals and the media will shrug them off, as they already do with car crashes and individual killings in large cities.

Anderson, the former Virginia Tech student, says every successive mass shooting is horrific, but also offers a call to renew her commitment to do something to address the problem.

In her case, she cofounded a company called LiveSafe, developers of a personal safety mobile app that allows people to interact directly with law enforcement agencies.

"It keeps happening and you see more people being traumatized," she says. "History has shown if you push it away, it's only going to keep happening."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.