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10:01 pm
Thu March 15, 2012

Petitions Are Going Viral, Sometimes To Great Success

Petition signatures sit in a box at a Sept. 21, 2011, news conference in Washington, D.C. The signatures, collected by Change.org and other groups, were delivered to congressional co-sponsors of legislation to ban hiring discrimination against unemployed workers.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Petitions have been a common form of protest throughout modern history, at times bringing attention to causes through little more than handwritten letters and word of mouth.

But like a lot of other things, petitions are going viral. And one website in particular has contributed to the phenomenon.

Change.org offers tools to let individuals start their own online campaigns, a way to bring instant awareness to issues that range from the environment to human rights.

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National Security
10:01 pm
Thu March 15, 2012

Defense Contractors See Hope In Homeland Security

A vendor talks to attendees at the Border Security Expo in Phoenix, Ariz., next to a display of sophisticated cameras and sensors painted to blend into the desert.
Ted Robbins NPR

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 8:24 am

The Defense Department is bracing for billions of dollars in budget cuts — and that has defense contractors looking for new markets. Homeland Security is one of the most promising, particularly border security, which hasn't suffered any big cuts. So companies are lining up in hopes of landing a contract.

At a border security trade show in Phoenix, Ariz., there's enough surveillance equipment on the floor of the convention center to spot a federal appropriation from 5 miles away.

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Middle East
10:01 pm
Thu March 15, 2012

Revisiting The Spark That Kindled The Syrian Uprising

The Syrian uprising began a year ago. Here, a protester in Homs throws a tear gas canister back at security forces on Dec. 27, 2011.
AFP Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:57 am

Last February, a group of young people were arrested for spray-painting graffiti on the walls of their school in the southern Syrian city of Daraa. They were beaten and interrogated. A year ago this Sunday, people went out to protest those arrests. And so began the Syrian uprising — an uprising that in some parts of Syria has turned into an armed insurgency and seen government troops respond with untold brutality. In all, thousands of people have died, with no clear end in sight.

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StoryCorps
10:01 pm
Thu March 15, 2012

After Tragedy, An Aunt Plays A New Role: Parent

Laura (left) and Phil Donney (right), with their Aunt Abby, whom they call "Tabby."
Liebman Family Photo

One night in 1995 completely reshaped the lives of Phil and Laura Donney. Their parents were arguing, and their father stabbed their mother, killing her. Phil was 7; his sister was 4.

Ken Donney was sent to prison, and the children went to live with their mother's sisters.

Phil, 23, recently sat down with his aunt, Abby Leibman, the twin sister of his mother, Nina Leibman.

"What was it like becoming a parent to my sister and I overnight?" Phil asks.

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Presidential Race
6:04 pm
Thu March 15, 2012

With New Film, Obama Hopes For Viral Video Boost

A screen shot of President Obama from the trailer for his campaign movie, The Road We've Traveled.
BarackObama.com/YouTube

Originally published on Fri March 16, 2012 8:10 am

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