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.

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Editor's note: This report contains accounts of rape, violence and other disturbing events.

Sex trafficking wasn't a major concern in the early 1980s, when Beth Jacobs was a teenager. If you were a prostitute, the thinking went, it was your choice.

Jacobs thought that too, right up until she came to, on the lot of a dark truck stop one night. She says she had asked a friendly-seeming man for a ride home that afternoon.

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Scientists Agree On Climate Change, Why Doesn't The Public?

May 17, 2013
Originally published on May 17, 2013 6:52 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. Yesterday, President Obama sent out a tweet drawing attention to a study about climate change. The study found that scientists who say climate change is largely caused by human activities vastly outnumber the skeptics. NPR's Richard Harris has more on the study that caught the White House's attention.

RICHARD HARRIS, BYLINE: Academies of science around the world agree that climate change is real and caused largely by burning fossil fuels. So do many professional scientific organizations. Polls of scientists point to the same conclusion, and so now does a review of the scientific literature. It shows that 97 percent of the time, scientists who express a view say that human activity is warming the planet.

ED MAYBACH: It's not a surprise at all, but it is the best, the most ambitious and biggest study done on this point to date.

HARRIS: Ed Maybach heads the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University. He wasn't involved in the study, but one of his students was. Volunteers combed through 12,000 studies from around the world. In about a third of the cases, the authors took a position about climate change. In that group, only two percent of those papers rejected the idea that human activities cause climate change. This is published in the journal Environmental Research Letters.

And although this consensus isn't news to anybody who studies the climate, Maybach's opinion surveys show the public isn't aware of it.

MAYBACH: Less than half of the public understands that there's widespread scientific agreement about climate change. About 40 percent believe that there's a lot of disagreement among the scientists.

HARRIS: And it's easy to see why that might be the case if you looked at the blogosphere, where skeptics abound. But it's not true in scientific publications, which are vetted by peer view. Maybach says part of this is human nature. People naturally tend to give undue weight to minority opinions.

MAYBACH: This is a particular foible of the human mind that makes us so susceptible to outlier opinions and as a counterweight to what otherwise would be overwhelming proof from - you know, based on the scientific consensus.

HARRIS: But even with this degree of doubt, most Americans Maybach surveys agree that climate change is happening. That's a pretty volatile number, though.

MAYBACH: People's assessments of climate change are very susceptible to what they've recently experienced in the weather.

HARRIS: And after this past cold winter, American opinion about the existence of climate change dropped seven percentage points, to 63 percent. Richard Harris, NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.