All Things Considered

On May 3, 1971, at 4 PM central, All Things Considered debuted on 90 public radio stations.

In the 40+ years since, almost everything about the program has changed, from the hosts, producers, editors and reporters to the length of the program, the equipment used and even the audience.

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However there is one thing that remains the same: each show consists of the biggest stories of the day, thoughtful commentaries, insightful features on the quirky and the mainstream in arts and life, music and entertainment, all brought alive through sound.

All Things Considered is the most listened-to, afternoon drive-time, news radio program in the country. Every weekday the two-hour show is hosted by Audie Cornish, Kelly McEvers, Bob MeyerRobert Siegel, and Ari Shapiro.  In 1977, ATC expanded to seven days a week with a one-hour show on Saturdays and Sundays, 4-5 PM.  Michel Martin hosts on the weekends.

During each broadcast, stories and reports come to listeners from NPR reporters and correspondents based throughout the United States and the world, along with reports from NPR Illinois journalists. The hosts interview newsmakers and contribute their own reporting. Rounding out the mix are the disparate voices of a variety of commentators, including Sports Commentator Stefen Fatsis, Poet Andrei Codrescu and Political Columnists David Brooks and E.J. Dionne with The Week in Politics.

All Things Considered has earned many of journalism's highest honors, including the George Foster Peabody Award, the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award and the Overseas Press Club Award.

 

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The birds are being pushed out. A new Audubon Society study found that bird habitats are shrinking like crazy because of climate change. Gary Langham led the study.

When his son was fatally shot by police last December, Terrell Tate-Skinner demanded to know who did it. Brandon Tate-Brown had been killed by Philadelphia police during a struggle following a routine traffic stop — and his father saw getting the names of the officers as the first step to justice.

Tate-Skinner and several dozen activists staged a rally outside the city's police headquarters after the shooting. At the protests, demonstrators took on the rallying cry: "Who killed Brandon Tate-Brown?"

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As part of a series called My Big Break, All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

A run-down bar in rural Alaska isn't any place for a kid. But when she was a child, that's where songwriter Jewel found her voice — on dingy stages at lumberjack joints.

A bill legalizing physician-assisted suicide has been approved by the California state legislature, and now awaits the signature of Gov. Jerry Brown. NPR's Arun Rath talks with Dan Diaz, whose late wife, Brittany Maynard, advocated for "right to die" legislation after receiving a terminal cancer diagnosis.

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Scientists today laid out a truly worst-case scenario for global warming — what would happen if we burned the Earth's entire supply of fossil fuels.

Virtually all of Antarctica's ice would melt, leading to a 160- to 200-foot sea level rise.

"If we burn it all, we're going to melt it all," says Ken Caldeira, a climate scientist at the Carnegie Institution for Science.

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Colstrip, Mont., is true to its name — it exists because of coal.

"Our coal's getting deeper, like everywhere else, because everybody's mining. They're getting into the deeper stuff," says Kevin Murphy, who has worked in the Rosebud Mine for 15 years running a bulldozer in the open pits.

Everything about the mine is enormous, especially the dragline, a machine as big as a ship with a giant boom that extends 300 feet up into the air. The dragline perches on the lip of the pit, scraping away hundreds of feet of rocky soil to reveal the black seam of coal below.

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There's a poem by Yi-Fen Chou in the 2015 edition of Best American Poetry, which came out on Tuesday. That's also when it came out — in the book's biographical notes — that Yi-Fen Chou is not a Chinese poet. He's a white guy named Michael Derrick Hudson. Hudson wrote in his bio that he uses the pen name as a strategy to get his poems published.

Ken Chen, executive director of the Asian American Writers' Workshop in New York, offered this commentary on All Things Considered:

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The treatment is called Fav-Afrique. It's the only anti-venom approved to neutralize the bites of 10 deadly African snakes, like spitting cobras, carpet vipers and black mambas. And the world's stockpiles of it are dwindling, Doctors Without Borders said Tuesday. The last batch expires next June.

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The massive numbers of people coming from Africa and the Middle East are already changing many places in Europe. NPR's Eleanor Beardsley takes us now to a provincial town in Austria that houses a refugee center.

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When Stephen Colbert takes over the Late Show tonight on CBS, he'll have a new partner in crime on stage: pianist Jon Batiste.

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The shootings on live TV of two young journalists last month highlighted, once again, the perils of dealing with potentially dangerous employees. Prior to the Roanoke, Va.-area attack, former employee and alleged shooter Vester Flanagan showed some violent tendencies at work. But it can be very difficult for employers to know when — and how — to step in.

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