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NBC Makes It Easier For The Blind To Join In The Rio Games

Aug 21, 2016
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Twenty years ago this week, President Clinton signed legislation to end "welfare as we know it." The new program set limits on benefits and gave states broad discretion on how to spend the funds. Now, far few people get welfare, even though poverty rates are higher. In most states, dollars allocated for welfare benefits have declined.

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George Curry, the legendary columnist, commentator and champion of black journalists, died of sudden heart failure on Saturday. He was 69.

On an ordinary day, you might miss this slip of a shop wedged between a veterinary clinic and a grocery store in Paris' popular Bastille neighborhood. But on an empty August afternoon, the Clinique du Rasoir Electrique — the Electric Razor Clinic — jumps right out at me.

Here, in a cluttered shop from a bygone era, 73-year-old Jacques Guillaume has been repairing electric razors since 1962. He says he's the last of a kind.

Evan Mawarire, a Zimbabwean clergyman, rose to prominence in the spring, when he draped the national flag around his shoulders and took to YouTube to call for change in his country, which has been ruled for more than three decades by President Robert Mugabe and is beset by chronic economic problems.

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After several close games along the way, the U.S. men's basketball team was all business on Sunday as they routed Serbia, 96-66, in the gold medal game that brought down the curtain on the competition in the Rio games.

Kevin Durant led the way, hitting three-point bombs, driving for dunks, handing out assists and making steals on defense. After a close first quarter, which ended with the U.S. up 19-15, the Americans blew the game open in the second frame.

Durant had 24 points by the half and the U.S. had a 23-point lead, 52-29.

Louisiana is entering recovery mode after devastating flooding killed 13 people and damaged at least 60,000 homes across 20 parishes.

But as Louisana Gov. John Bel Edwards told CNN, that process is "going to take many months." He added that even though this flooding was "unprecedented and historic," many are "just now realizing how significant it was."

Lou Pearlman, the impresario behind boy band giants such as the Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC, has died in prison where he is serving a 25-year sentence tied to a $300 million Ponzi scheme.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons said 62-year-old Pearlman died on Friday, without specifying a cause of death.

Along with the Ponzi scheme allegations, Pearlman has also faced accusations of sexual misconduct against numerous young boy band members, first detailed in a 2007 Vanity Fair article.

Iraq has executed 36 people accused of participating in the ISIS massacre of more than a thousand Iraqi troops in 2014.

As NPR's Alison Meuse told our Newscast unit, that massacre happened when ISIS, a Sunni extremist group, overran a former U.S. military base called Camp Speicher. Here's more from Alison:

American boxer Claressa Shields has successfully defended her London 2012 gold in the women's middleweight division, beating the Netherlands' Nouchka Fontijn in a unanimous decision Sunday. Shields also becomes the first U.S. boxer, male or female, to win two Olympic gold medals.

"Oh my God, I feel like I'm dreaming right now, somebody pinch me, oh my God," Shields said after the fight, according to the Olympic News Service." She added, "You know not everybody can be an Olympic gold medallist. I'm a two-time Olympic gold medallist. Oh my god, I can't believe I just said that."

"I'm very excited, and I can't wait for my team to be with me so I can do that," says gymnastics star Simone Biles, hours before becoming the first gymnast to carry the U.S. flag since 1936.

Biles received that honor Saturday, being named the flag bearer for tonight's closing ceremony in a nod to an exceptional Summer Olympics in Rio. In Brazil, Biles, 19, collected four gold medals and a bronze. But the gymnast, who is listed at 4'8", admits that she's a little concerned about how she'll carry the flag.

Paul Chelimo's tale about becoming a U.S. Olympian is unusual, and the story behind his silver medal performance in the men's 5,000 meters is stranger still.

We'll work backwards, starting with his race in Rio on Saturday night.

Chelimo ran a personal best in the 5,000 meters (3.1 miles) of 13:03:90, finishing second with a strong kick and trailing only the remarkable Mo Farah of Britain, who won the 5,000 and the 10,000, the same difficult double he pulled off in 2012.

Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge won the men's marathon on Sunday, surging ahead with about nine miles to go and leaving his closet rival more than a minute behind on the streets of Rio.

Kipchoge, who was considered the favorite, finished the 26.2-mile race in 2 hours, 8 minutes, 44 seconds. The race began and ended in the Sambrodomo, the parade ground for the city's iconic Carnival.

Kipchoge, who won the London Marathon earlier this year in near world-record time, is just the second Kenyan man to win the gold medal in the Olympic marathon.

One of the most surprising stories of the Olympics, which end on Sunday, was the unseeded Monica Puig's improbable march to the gold medal in women's singles tennis. Puig's win captured Puerto Rico's first-ever gold medal in the Olympics, and set off massive celebrations across the island. It was a big-ass deal.

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What It's Really Like To 'Walk' In Space

Aug 21, 2016
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