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

The U.S. Has More Guns, But Russia Has More Murders

Sep 21, 2013
Originally published on October 9, 2013 5:39 pm

The U.S. and Russia have been taking lots of jabs at each other.

Russian President Vladimir Putin criticized President Obama's plan for a military strike in Syria, and the Russian leader then denounced American "exceptionalism" in a biting op-ed in The New York Times.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., fired back Thursday with his own op-ed in the Russian paper Pravda, entitled, "Russia Deserves Better Than Putin."

Even Monday's shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington, in which a gunmen killed 12 people, has become part of the feud.

Alexei Pushkov, the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in Russia's parliament, used the shooting to mock the United States as it was happening.

"A new shootout at Navy headquarters in Washington — a lone gunman and seven corpses. Nobody's even surprised anymore. A clear confirmation of American exceptionalism," Puskoy tweeted.

But while Pushkov sneers at U.S. gun laws, how do the stats look in Russia?

According to Gunpolicy.org, Russians have far fewer guns than Americans — and far more homicides.

There are fewer than 13 million firearms in circulation in Russia, compared with an estimated 300 million in the United States. That works out to about 9 guns per 100 people in Russia and closed to 100 guns per 100 people in America.

The most recent homicide statistics for Russia show that there were 21,603 killings in 2009.

According to the FBI, the United States had 13,636 homicides in 2009 with a population that is more than twice as large. More than 80 percent of those killings were gun-related.

It's difficult to make a direct comparison of gun homicides in the two countries because Russia doesn't break down its murder statistics.

Russian Gun Laws

Russia has tough gun laws on the books. It's illegal for Russian citizens to own automatic and semi-automatic guns. It's possible to apply for a handgun or shotgun license, though citizens are required to provide reasons such as hunting or target shooting.

Applicants face strict background checks, including criminal history, a full psychological evaluation and a medical exam. They must pass a test on firearm laws and safety.

Each weapon is then registered by the police during a home visit. Police take bullet patterns, test bullets and cartridges so bullets can be matched if the gun is used in a crime. A license lasts five years, after which applicants must go through the whole process again.

In spite of these laws, the country does have periodic mass shootings by people thought to be mentally ill.

Last November, after a five-day drinking binge, 30-year-old lawyer Dmitry Vinogradov posted a message online referring to humanity as "compost."

Shortly after, he walked into the Moscow pharmaceutical company where he worked and opened fire, killing six colleagues and critically injuring another. He was jailed for life last week.

Move To Ease Gun Laws

The Right to Bear Arms, a Moscow-based organization that has more than 5,000 members, is trying to make guns more easily available in Russia.

"Our citizens are deprived of normal tools of self-defense, and that plays an important role in public safety," Maria Butina, the group's 24-year-old founder, told The Moscow News.

But she has a long way to go in convincing the public. A poll by the Levada Center in 2011 showed that 80 percent of Russians are opposed to easing existing gun laws.

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