News You Can Use

Applebee's announced this month that more than 130 of its restaurants will close by the end of the year.

The casual dining chain rebranded itself in the past few years as a modern bar and grill.

Applebee's executive John Cywinski recently told investors that the company had hoped the effort would attract a new kind of customer.

The chain aimed to lure "a more youthful and affluent demographic with a more independent or even sophisticated dining mindset, including a clear pendulum swing towards millennials," he said.

Demonstrators came from across the country to gather at the White House in support of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as toddlers and children.

Five years ago today, President Obama signed an executive order protecting them from deportation. It's known as DACA — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

Now immigrant rights groups — and immigrants themselves — worry that opponents and President Trump's administration are quietly working to revoke protection for DACA participants — young people like Claudia Quiñonez from Bolivia:

Updated 4:31 pm August 16: On Wednesday, the White House said it would continue what's known as cost-sharing reduction payments to insurers for another month, buying President Trump some time to decide whether he'll continue the payments long-term or cut them off altogether.

The announcement came a day after the Congressional Budget Office released an analysis that found that ending the payments would increase the deficit by $194 billion over 10 years.

We now interrupt our regularly scheduled coverage to bring you this important public service announcement:

"Anyone offered large quantities [of chocolate] via unconventional channels should report it to the police immediately."

We trust you'll abide by those instructions from law enforcement in Germany, where more than 20 tons of chocolate treats have gone missing after thieves stole a refrigerated trailer packed with Nutella, Kinder Surprise eggs and other sweets.

Promila Saigal remembers the men in her family tossing her "like a football" from the rooftop of one family home to the next, in a bid to save her from the frenzy that washed over the Indian subcontinent 70 years ago.

Saigal was just six when the events of India's Partition pressed in around her Hindu family's compound in Lahore.

"I remember very clearly, outside the main road, a mob had collected at 12 o'clock in the night. And they woke us up," she says.

A "White Lives Matter" rally scheduled at Texas A&M University for Sept. 11 has been called off over "risks of threat to life and safety," the school says.

The white nationalist rally, organized by former Texas A&M student Preston Wiginton, was not sponsored by any campus organizations, the university says. But the university, which is required to observe First Amendment rights, had allowed Wiginton to reserve space in a public area on campus.

Do I have to pay the health law's so-called "Cadillac tax" because I have good health insurance? When can I get Trumpcare plans for my kids? And what can I do if my insurance plan choices don't include a specialist who is the only doctor in the area that can treat my cancer? Here are the answers to some recent questions about health insurance from readers.

Updated at 5:11 p.m. ET

Zimbabwe's first lady failed to turn herself in to South African authorities Tuesday, apparently evading accusations that she beat a South African model and her friend with an extension cord over the weekend. Grace Mugabe, who allegedly committed the assault in a Johannesburg hotel as her bodyguards looked on, had been scheduled to appear in court — but now police are struggling to explain where, exactly, their suspect went.

Updated at 1 p.m. ET Aug. 16

More business leaders have added their names to the growing list of executives who have resigned from President Trump's manufacturing council, as members from Campbell Soup and 3M stepped down Wednesday.

3M President and CEO Inge Thulin said the decision to leave the group followed reflection on the values of "sustainability, diversity and inclusion."

If, for some reason, you find yourself in a situation where you need to wash radioactive material from your body, don't reach for the bottle of hair conditioner. Conditioner can bind radioactive particles to your hair.

Updated at 2:27 p.m. ET

Rescue workers on the outskirts of Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown, are rushing to find survivors a day after heavy rains caused a mountainside to partially collapse Monday morning, engulfing homes and killing hundreds.

Many young American surgeons have a strong desire to do humanitarian work overseas. But their good intentions usually don't match up with the skills, such as performing cesarean section deliveries and fixing broken bones, that they'll need in poor countries.

And that means U.S. general surgeons, eager to do charitable work around the globe, may miss out on chances to help some of the world's neediest patients.

More than two weeks after they were first spotted, wildfires on the western coast of Greenland are still burning, worrying local residents and drawing the attention of scientists.

The moments inside a courtroom in Orlando in 2007 were quick and consequential for Marquis McKenzie. The 16-year-old stood handcuffed behind a lectern. A juvenile judge announced his charges, then apologized that he could no longer take up the case.

"You're being direct filed," he told McKenzie, who was accused of armed robbery over a cellphone and a wallet. "You understand what I'm saying? You're being charged as an adult now."

McKenzie remembers his mother wailing from the courtroom benches, begging the judge to reconsider.

Pearce Tefft wrote a letter to members of his community in Fargo, N.D., to set the record straight about his family and the current state of his relationship to Peter Tefft, calling his son "an avowed white nationalist" who attended the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend.

Wilco has released a new song against ignorance and violence in the wake of last weekend's unrest in Charlottesville, VA. The track, called "All Lives, You Say?" is a short country shuffle that takes aim at the slogan "All Lives Matter," designed as a counter-protest to the Black Lives Matter movement.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un reviewed his military's plans to rain "an enveloping fire" around the U.S. territory of Guam — but opted not to fire missiles at this time, according to state media. Despite the stand-down, some Guamanians were alarmed after two radio stations aired an erroneous emergency alert Tuesday.

A Bootstrapped British Invasion

Aug 15, 2017

The Trump administration on Wednesday will start to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico. And despite very tough talk about NAFTA during the campaign, it appears the administration has backed away from a major assault on the decades-old trade deal.

And that is a relief to businesses in all three countries.

During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump clearly tapped into frustration about workers who had lost jobs in manufacturing. And he painted NAFTA as one of the central villains responsible for stealing Americans jobs.

American doctors have been noticing an increase in osteoarthritis of the knee. They have suspected two driving forces: more old people and more people who are overweight.

A study published in this week's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences argues that's far from the whole story. Even correcting for body mass index and age, osteoarthritis of the knee is twice as common now as it was before the 1950s.

The names and faces of individuals who were part of last weekend's white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., are being plastered all over the Internet by civil rights advocates. It's part of an effort to shame the people who participated. But it's a tactic that can also snare some innocent people in its net.

Back when Amazon first introduced the Kindle, and e-books were all the rage, a lot of people thought printed books and the stores that sell them were going the way of dinosaurs. But a decade later, print is outselling digital, and many independent bookstores are thriving. Even Amazon is opening brick-and-mortar stores (seven so far).

Guest DJ Randy Newman

Aug 15, 2017

Note: This week we're featuring select episodes from our Guest DJ archives. Today we've got a conversation with Randy Newman. The singer, composer and pianist recently released his 11th solo album. It's called Dark Matter. Bob Boilen originally spoke with Newman back in 2008 when Newman released his previous record, Harps And Angels.

Updated at 6:05 p.m. ET

In a press conference on Tuesday, the president of the United States appeared to equate white supremacist marchers with counterprotesters who recently clashed in Charlottesville, Va.

In the last year, there's been a big drop in support for charter schools, while other forms of school choice are getting a little less unpopular. That's the top line of a national poll released today.

President Trump and his education secretary Betsy DeVos have put school choice front and center on their education agenda. The general idea of "choice," however, takes many forms.

A Denver jury found fully in pop singer Taylor Swift's favor Monday, delivering a unanimous verdict in a trial over whether she was groped by a former radio host during a Denver meet-and-greet. Wanting the trial to serve as an "example to other women," the star had sought a single dollar in damages, which she was granted.

At a federal court in Wisconsin, a British cybersecurity expert pleaded not guilty to charges over an alleged malware scheme to steal personal banking information.

Before these accusations, Marcus Hutchins was known for his role in finding the "kill switch" to the WannaCry ransomware cyber-attack last May that "threatened over 150 countries," NPR's Leila Fadel reported.

Updated 10:25 a.m. ET Tuesday

Hundreds of people are confirmed dead with hundreds more still missing after torrential rains on the outskirts of Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown, caused a mountainside to collapse onto a residential community.

Reports on the death toll have varied. The country's national broadcaster announced late Monday that the number of dead had risen above 300 and is expected to go higher. The Red Cross said in a statement Tuesday that at least 260 bodies have been recovered from the mud.

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