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10:33 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Is It Racist To 'Call A Spade A Spade'?

So where did the phrase "call a spade a spade" come from?
andrewasmith/via Flickr

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 2:21 pm

What happens when a perfectly innocuous phrase takes on a more sinister meaning over time?

Case in point, the expression "to call a spade a spade." For almost half a millennium, the phrase has served as a demand to "tell it like it is." It is only in the past century that the phrase began to acquire a negative, racial overtone.

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The Two-Way
10:19 am
Mon September 23, 2013

U.N.: Child Labor Is Down, But 168 Million Children Still Work

Near Islamabad, Pakistan, 6-year-old Jabro Mounir was arranging bricks this summer — part of his daily work at a brick-making facility. He earns a little less than $2 per day.
Muhammed Muheisen AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 10:59 am

The trend is good:

"The global number of child laborers has declined by one third since 2000."

But:

That still means there are an estimated 168 million child laborers around the world, and more than half "are involved in hazardous work" involving such things as dangerous machinery and harmful chemicals.

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The Two-Way
9:27 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Reports: Two Arrests In Chicago Shooting That Wounded 13

After last Thursday's mass shooting in Chicago, a police detective collected crime scene tape when investigators were done with their work.
Paul Beaty AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 3:07 pm

"Two men are in custody in connection with last week's shooting in a South Side park that left 13 people injured," the Chicago Tribune reports.

The Tribune adds that:

"The men, both 22, were arrested around 7:30 p.m. Sunday in an abandoned building in the 5200 block of South Marshfield Avenue, police said. No charges have been filed.

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Monkey See
9:08 am
Mon September 23, 2013

A Sloppy Emmy Telecast Does The Wrong Song And Dance

Neil Patrick Harris hosted the Emmy Awards on Sunday night.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 10:26 am

Awards shows aren't easy. That's partly because they're fundamentally unsympathetic affairs in which rich pretty people give each other trophies, and partly because there are only a few real things on which they can be judged: the opening by the host, the montages and features, the speeches, the assorted intangibles and — oh, right — who wins.

By almost any of these measures, Sunday night's Emmy Awards were not only merely bad but really most sincerely bad, or at best (particularly in the case of winners) a bag that's very much mixed.

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The Two-Way
9:05 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Egyptian Court Bans The Muslim Brotherhood

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 7:49 pm

A court in Egypt has issued a ban on the Muslim Brotherhood, the group that is still protesting the military's ouster of President Mohammed Morsi. The court also ordered the group's assets to be seized.

"The court bans the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood organization and its non-governmental organization and all the activities that it participates in and any organization derived from it," presiding Judge Mohammed al-Sayed said, according to Reuters.

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The Two-Way
8:36 am
Mon September 23, 2013

No Way, Man! Last VW Bus To Soon Roll Off Assembly Line

Enio Guarnieri of Sao Paulo, Brazil, in his 1972 Volkswagen. Soon, the last of the vans will be made in a nearby factory.
Andre Penner AP

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 9:00 am

We just tripped over some news that's got us a bit bummed out:

The last Volkswagen "hippie bus" is due to roll off an an assembly line in Brazil on Dec. 31.

It seems the van that became known as the transportation of choice for counter-culture folks in the '60s can't be made with the air bags and other safety equipment that "the man" wants it to have.

So Volkswagen is ending production in the last place where the van's still made; a factory near Sao Paulo.

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Africa
8:36 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Survivor Of Kenya Mall Attack Describes Horrible Situation

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 10:35 am

Efforts are underway in Nairobi to remove the militants and others trapped in the high-end shopping mall after it was attack on Saturday. For more on what the situation is like, David Greene talks to an American who works for a non-governmental organization. She asks only to be identified by her first name Lauren.

The Two-Way
7:36 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Book News: Remembering Poet Kofi Awoonor, Killed In Nairobi Attack

Kenya security personnel take cover outside Nairobi's upscale Westgate Mall after shooting started inside early Monday morning.
Sayyid Azim AP

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Around the Nation
7:27 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Banned Books Week Highlights What's Taken Out At Schools

Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 10:35 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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