Mar 8, 2014 — Wednesday, the College Board announced it will make the essay portion of the SAT exam optional. But what is lost when the importance of essays is diminished?
Mar 1, 2014 — Ramis, the actor and director best known for his comedies like Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day, died on Monday. In an age of bombast and snickering, Ramis remembered the importance of compliments.
Feb 22, 2014 — A Ukrainian skier has pulled out of the Olympics to show solidarity with protesters back home. While the impact of her move is unclear, forgoing a chance at a medal is a powerful symbol.
Feb 15, 2014 — Shirley Temple starred in reliably formulaic movies — a little girl loses a parent, but unlocks the iron hearts of those around her with smiles and song.
Feb 8, 2014 — Will Sochi be a city of super-sized, expensive venues that sit mostly empty in the future? Maybe having different cities host the Olympics doesn't make much sense.
Feb 1, 2014 — Renee Fleming will sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl on Sunday in New Jersey. She is the first opera star to be asked. NPR's Scott Simon remembers how Fleming has performed under pressure many times, including when she sang "Amazing Grace" at the ruins of the World Trade Center after 9/11.
Jan 11, 2014 — Dennis Rodman took a team of former NBA players to North Korea to celebrate leader Kim Jong Un's birthday. NPR's Scott Simon likes the flamboyant and frank Rodman, but wonders if his tour amounts to sports diplomacy or propaganda for the North Korean regime.
Dec 21, 2013 — NPR's Scott Simon muses on the inclusion of the former tennis superstar in the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. King is a lesbian who was not always open about her sexuality, but both she and American culture have changed since then.
Dec 14, 2013 — Recently, the principal of Trumbull High School in Connecticut canceled a student production of Rent. The rock musical, about a group of young people living in New York, features characters dealing with drugs, sexuality and AIDS.
Dec 7, 2013 — By the time he died, Nelson Mandela was considered one of the few giants on the world stage. As NPR's Scott Simon remembers, Mandela was not alone in offering his life for freedom, so the acclaim justly heaped upon Mandela is also a credit to those who worked, served and led with him.