News

Image of US Capitol
ttarasiuk / Flickr Creative Commons

When Sen. Richard Burr declared his re-election bid last year, his odds looked good; he had had a large war chest and no clear opponent. But now, Democratic challenger Deborah Ross has emerged as a strong contender and polls show the two in a hot race.

Analysts are watching the race closely as it will play a significant role in determining which party controls the U.S. Senate.

Host Frank Stasio talks with WUNC Capitol Bureau Chief Jeff Tiberii about the latest on the race.

Still from "Deep Run"
Courtesy of producer Chris Talbott

There are tens of thousands of transgender individuals living in North Carolina.

House Bill 2 sparked a national conversation about one particular aspect of their lives, but the North Carolina Gay and Lesbian Film Festival aims to paint a broader picture.

One of the documentaries featured this year "Deep Run," is a verite portrait of a trans man named Cole Ray Davis living in Deep Run, N.C., a rural town outside of Kinston.

In 1866, communities across western North Carolina were forced to pick up the pieces left by the Civil War. Residents had ties to the Confederacy and the Union. As a result, the region was scattered with divided homes and hostile relations.

This image from the governor's office shows teacher pay increasing starting in the 2013-2014 school year.
Office of Governor Pat McCrory

Governor Pat McCrory has made the rise of teacher pay a centerpiece of his bid for reelection. The image above shows the upward climb in average teacher salaries since the 2013-2014 school year. It has appeared behind the governor at public events, including the signing of the 2016-2017 state budget.

In the early hours of Sunday morning, a 20-year old African American man was shot to death in North Raleigh. Tapes of the 911 calls  feature the accused shooter, Chad Cameron Copley, declaring himself a member of neighborhood watch who fired what he called warning shots that hit Kouren-Rodney Bernard Thomas. Copley said there were "hoodlums" on his street and told the 911 operator that he was going out to "secure" the neighborhood. Copley has been charged with first-degree murder. Host Frank Stasio talks with News and Observer reporter Ron Gallagher about the latest.

Photo of Dr. Cynthia Toth and Dr. Francesco LaRocca
Francesco LaRocca / Duke University

A team of engineers and physicians at Duke University has developed a new device that can capture high-quality images of retinas. It can produce high-resolution images of photoreceptor cells, or rods and cones.

Previous technology required the patient to sit still and concentrate for a few minutes, something children can't do very well. This lightweight handheld device fixes that problem.

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals
Jeff Tiberii / WUNC

A federal court ruling created uncertainty in North Carolina's election process when it overturned the state's controversial voting regulations. The law would have required photo identification, reduced early voting days and eliminated same day registration.

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that measure violates the U.S. constitution, because it discriminates against African-American and Latino voters. Local Board of Elections are now making changes that advocates say do not comply with the ruling.

Photo: A Massachusetts voting station sign
Katri Niemi / Flickr

Local elections boards are raising questions about how to restore the early voting period after a court ruling struck down North Carolina's newest elections law.

"All The Missing Girls" by Megan Miranda
Megan Miranda

Four years ago the novel "Gone Girl" took the world by storm. The book invoked a familiar thriller novel premise—a sudden mysterious disappearance—but also explored deep psychological and emotional themes.

Critics say the new novel "All The Missing Girls" (Simon & Schuster/2016) from North Carolina author Megan Miranda follows in the tradition of "Gone Girl."

An image of Storymakers:Durham
Storymakers:Durham

There's a lot of focus right now on the things that divide Americans – race, class, religion, sexual orientation, and more. Sometimes, intense shared experiences can break down those divisions.

headshot of Whitney Way Thore
Deborah Feingold

This is a rebroadcast of a program that originally aired on June 27, 2016.

Whitney Way Thore knows how much she has weighed at every point in her life.

And for decades, deconstructing the size and shape of her body consumed much of her mental and emotional energy. She struggled with an eating disorder, compulsive exercise, and eventually was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome.  

Meet North Carolina's 2016 Summer Olympic Hopefuls

Aug 5, 2016
A montage of 2016 summer Olympic athletes with ties to North Carolina.
www.teamusa.org and www.usagym.org

From the basketball court to the swimming pool, North Carolina will have its fair share of representation in Rio de Janeiro. Some of these athletes are N.C. natives, while others train here or went to school here. Read on to learn more about the U.S. Olympians with North Carolina connections.

On this edition of the WUNCPolitics Podcast: Another rousing game of "Is This A Thing?"

Managing Editor for News Dave DeWitt and Capitol Bureau Chief Jeff Tiberii try to decide the level of importance of the following topics: vice presidential candidates visiting North Carolina this week; the various campaign strategies being employed in the race to become Governor; and how the latest court decision in the Voter ID case will impact turnout this fall.

a nationwide collaboration between NPR’s Ed Team and 20 member station reporters exploring how states pay for their public schools and why many are failing to meet the needs of their most vulnerable students.
Leigh Ann Cross

State Board of Education members voted Thursday to approve eight new charter schools.

The schools got the green light, but they will still have to meet a number of requirements by next summer before being allowed to open for the 2017-2018 school year. Those requirements include hiring staff, finding a facility, recruiting board members and drafting policies.

An image of Dorothy Day
Public Domain / Wikipedia

Note: this segment originally aired April 7, 2016. 

Journalist and social activist Dorothy Day challenged the structure of the Catholic church when she co-founded the Catholic Worker Movement in the 1930s.

The group advocated for direct aid to the poor and civil disobedience on their behalf. Today, Day's granddaughter Martha Hennessy continues Day's work.
 

photo from 'The Little Rascals'
Photo Courtesy Bronwen Dickey

Note: this segment originally aired June 1, 2016.

Writer Bronwen Dickey grew up with the impression of pit bulls that dominates popular discourse: they are mean, aggressive, and dangerous dogs. But after a freelance writing piece put her in an environment with a sweet and gentle pit bull, she began to wonder whether there was more to the stereotype.

An image of Durham poet and musician Shirlette Ammons
Tim Walter

Note: this segment originally aired April 29, 2016. 

Republican Vice presidential candidate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence speaks during a town hall meeting in Raleigh, N.C., Thursday, Aug. 4, 2016.
Gerry Broome / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Speaking to a crowd of about 300 people at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Raleigh, Indiana Governor Mike Pence said if Republicans take back the White House in November, they will cut taxes, repeal Obamacare and put Americans back to work.

Willy Somma

Durham native Heather Havrilesky has spent most of her professional life as a social commentator of sorts. 

She has written online cartoons about the absurdity of life, reviews of crappy TV reality shows, and columns about why we love crappy TV reality shows.

It is perhaps no wonder that she has become a successful advice columnist.

Havrilesky is the writer behind "Ask Polly," a weekly column in New York magazine in which she guides readers through existential questions.

An image of the book cover for 'The Last Road Home'
Kensington Books

Growing up as a kid in the 1950s, Danny Johnson liked to do two things: read books and work on his grandmother's farm. He's now combined his love for Southern literature with imagery from his upbringing in his debut novel, "The Last Road Home" (Kensington Books/2016). 

Host Frank Stasio talks with Johnson about his Southern adolescence and creating a story outside of his lived experience.

North Carolina Public Radio has launched a new radio station. WUNC Music can now be found online and on your phone at wuncmusic.org and on HD2 in the Triangle area.  

Morning Edition Host Eric Hodge spoke with WUNC Program Director David Brower about the new station.

ECU Scientists Track Spread Of Zombie Crabs

Aug 4, 2016
Cliff Hollis, ECU News Services

North Carolina's mud crabs are falling victim to an invasive parasite that researchers say turns them into walking zombies.

April Blakeslee is an assistant professor of biology at East Carolina University. She said the parasitic barnacle called Loxothylacus panopaei, or simply Loxo, can commandeer the reproductive systems of the crabs and alter their behavior.

Tim Kaine in Greensboro, N.C.
Chuck Burton / ASSOCIATED PRESS

At a rally in Greensboro Wednesday afternoon, Democratic Vice Presidential candidate Tim Kaine said voters cannot trust Donald Trump, criticized House Bill 2 and stressed the importance of this swing state in November.

Image of bottled water provided by Duke Energy to families affected by the coal ash spill.
Dave DeWitt / WUNC

State toxicologist Ken Rudo testified that Governor Pat McCrory participated via phone in a meeting to draft letters to well owners downplaying the risk of coal ash contamination in their drinking water.

Photo of Mike Pence and Pat McCrory
Evan Vucci / AP

With a little more than three months until the 2016 elections, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is facing strong backlash—even from some fellow Republicans—​against his latest verbal onslaught, in which he attacked the parents of a fallen soldier.

The controversy comes as Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton opens a sizable post-convention lead in most polls. Will this latest controversy affect Trump's chances in North Carolina? And what effect could it have on Gov. Pat McCrory, who has campaigned with Trump in the state?

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