You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.
Encounters between humans and bears have risen in Western states, especially in Wyoming and Colorado. That's due largely to drought. Bears are traveling longer distances for food because the berries they usually eat have dried up.
As we hear from Aspen Public Radio's Marci Krivonen, hungry bears are turning to dumpsters, kitchen cabinets and refrigerators.
Two moderate Republicans — former congressmen Mike Castle of Delaware and Tom Davis of Virginia — wonder whether that wing of their party can survive. In years past the party had a component referred to as "Rockefeller Republicans" — named after former Vice President Nelson Rockefeller. The group tended to work well with middle of the road Democrats.
NPR listener Alice Benner says her Italian grandmother made ravioli that was "indescribably delicious."
Benner told us that she's tried to re-create the recipe many times. "The dough — the consistency — is totally wrong, usually too thick," she writes.
Benner's grandmother used Romano cheese in the filling — probably from an Italian deli in Chicago — but Benner says when she makes the ravioli, "the Romano cheese I've used never has the same punch. I've all but given up trying to make them."
There is growing international criticism over plans by Gambia's hard-line president to execute all of the country's death-row inmates within the next couple of weeks.
Gambia's leader, President Yahya Jammeh, has long faced criticism for his human rights record. In a recent speech marking the end of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, the president vowed to put to death all prisoners facing the death penalty by mid-September, as a way to curb crime.
Many cities around the nation are trying to revive their downtowns, adding more apartments and condominiums — usually high-rises — to lure new residents.
But as urban dwellers grow in numbers, they need places to get outside. Yet, in many cities, like Miami, neighborhood parks can be hard to find. The Trust for Public Land ranks Miami 94 on a list of 100 cities when it comes to park acreage per 1,000 residents — just 2.8 acres per 1,000 residents, versus 4.5 in New York and 6.2 in Los Angeles.
One of the biggest debates in Washington, D.C., these days has nothing to do with taxes, health care or the economy. It's about baseball and whether the Washington Nationals should end the season of their young pitching star, Stephen Strasburg, just as the team may be headed for the playoffs.
Two years ago, Strasburg's promising career was threatened when he tore a ligament in his pitching arm. He needed surgery and couldn't pitch for a year.
Now, a non-story that's kicked off a very real conversation about race in America. In 2005, Congressman Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney's vice presidential running mate, told a Milwaukee magazine that he has a black sister-in-law. He also said that in his bachelor past he had a black girlfriend. A CNN blogger gave the interview new life a few days ago. But what, if anything, does this glimpse into Ryan's past tell us about how inclusive his politics would be as vice president?
NPR's Karen Grigsby Bates went in search of some answers.