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The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

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

After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she disparaged him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb political statements" about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

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Politics, The Pledge And A Peculiar History

Sep 11, 2012
Originally published on September 11, 2012 5:05 pm

When Mitt Romney uses the Pledge of Allegiance as a metaphor for all that's good and right with America, how many in his audience know that the two-sentence loyalty oath was penned not by the Founding Fathers in 1776, but a fascist preacher more than 100 years later?

Or that the original recommended posture was with a straightened arm raised upward and outward? Or that it was changed to the hand over the heart during World War II after the Nazis adopted the original as their salute?

Every so often in politics, the pledge gets wrapped up in a legal battle or a political campaign, often with the conservative candidate or group suggesting the other side is anti-American or anti-God. And each time, the actual history of the pledge is either ignored entirely or glossed over.

On Saturday in Virginia Beach, Va., Romney unveiled a strategy of using the pledge to highlight his vision for the country and to criticize President Obama — in part for the Democratic Party's short-lived exclusion of the word "God" from the platform approved at its convention last week.

On Monday in Mansfield, Ohio, Romney again kicked off his stump speech by focusing line-by-line on the words of the pledge, reports NPR's Ari Shapiro.

Despite keen interest in the pledge's concepts, its origins are not likely to come up in any modern political speech.

Francis Bellamy was a minister who was thrown out of his Baptist post because of sermons describing Jesus as a socialist. He and novelist cousin Edward Bellamy both saw a future for the United States as a country in which the government controlled virtually every aspect of a person's life.

Francis Bellamy (who also wrote for a magazine underwritten by flag sales and therefore stood to gain by having schools require a flag salute each day) and his friends got President Benjamin Harrison to incorporate Bellamy's pledge into the 400th anniversary celebration of Columbus' arrival in the New World. It has been recited in public schools ever since.

In 1954, amid anti-communist fervor, President Eisenhower and Congress added "under God" at the behest of a Presbyterian minister, George MacPherson Docherty. The Scottish immigrant became better known as a civil rights activist in later years, working with Martin Luther King Jr.

All this notwithstanding, the pledge has remained a recurring political hot button. Then-Vice President George H.W. Bush became its chief defender when running for president in 1988 against former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis, who had vetoed a bill requiring students to recite the pledge.

And many conservatives defended the pledge against legal challenges in recent years, winning federal appeals court rulings both in San Francisco and Boston.

Even some conservatives have noticed the seeming contradiction.

"It's ironic to see conservatives rally to such a questionable custom," Gene Healy, a Cato Institute scholar, wrote in 2003, when the California pledge case was originally in the news. "Why do so many conservatives who, by and large, exalt the individual and the family above the state, endorse this ceremony of subordination to the government? Why do Christian conservatives say it's important for schoolchildren to bow before a symbol of secular power? Indeed, why should conservatives support the Pledge at all, with or without 'under God'?"

S.V. Dáte is the congressional editor on NPR's Washington Desk.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.