Trump Administration Rescinds Obama Rule On Transgender Students' Bathroom Use

The Trump administration is rescinding guidance issued by its predecessor on the rights of transgender students to use bathrooms based on the gender with which they identify. The move reverses guidance the Obama administration publicized in May 2016, which said a federal law known as Title IX protects that right. The Justice and Education departments said Wednesday the Obama documents do not "contain extensive legal analysis or explain how the position is consistent with the express language...

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Bluesman Roy Bookbinder says that if he had been born 50 years earlier, he would have become a minstrel man.  

In his long musical journey through the rich American cultural landscape of the last half of the 20th Century, he’s been friends with the Rev. Gary Davis, Pink Anderson and Robert Lockwood. 

He’s toured with Arthur Big Boy Crudup, Hot Tuna, JJ Cale & Bonnie Raitt

He’s been featured on a PBS special and interviewed by Terry Gross on “Fresh Air.” 

He’s also a regular at Fur Peace Ranch, where he teaches along with Jorma Kaukonen. 

Margaret Krauss / WESA


Marian Spotts and her husband, Phil, rode a bus with other Trump supporters 350 miles from Erie County, to Washington, D.C. for Inauguration Day earlier this year.

After Trump’s speech, we asked Marian for some feedback.

“Very plainspoken,” she said. “And spoken to the Americans that wanna hear some encouraging words. So, yeah, it’s an encouraging time.”

Marian says immigration is an important issue for her.

Joseph Kaczmarek / AP Photo


More than 3,000 bridges throughout the state have been deemed structurally deficient.

Heart palpitations, sweating, dizziness. For some people, crossing a bridge induces the same physiological responses as those experienced by an animal frozen in fear, said Dr. Rolf Jacob, a professor of psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh.

“Just like having fear of flying because the airplane could crash, some people might avoid bridges because they are concerned about its structural safety,” he said.

Grace Bell /

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues Show as broadcast on February 18, 2017, and hosted by Max Spiegel. 

In the first hour, hear Mississippi John Hurt, ZZ Top, Taj Mahal, The Black Keys, Bob Dylan, J.J. Cale, Ray Charles, Paul Simon, Idris Muhammed, The Carolina Chocolate Drops, Catfish Keith, and more.

In hour two, hear David Bromberg, Bob Dylan and The Band, Etta James, Jimmy and Jeanie Cheatham, Chris Smither, Blind Gary Davis, john Long, and more.  

WPSU Jazz Archive - Jan. 17, 2017

Feb 18, 2017
Noop1958 / Creative Commons

An archive recording for the WPSU Jazz show as aired on February 17, 2017 and hosted by Rana Glick. 

In the first hour, hear Al Jarreau, Luciana Suza, La Luna, Art Pepper, The Buena Vista Social Club, Xavier Lemon, Cecil Paine Quartet. Blossom Dearie, and more.

In the second hour, hear Roman Diaz, Dizzy Gillespie, Al Jarreau, Carlos Para, Karen Allison, and more.   

Fraternity Charter Revoked Following Student Death

Feb 17, 2017
Old Main building at Penn State

Penn State has revoked the charter of fraternity Beta Theta Pi effective immediately. The ban will last at least five years and may become permanent based on the results of a criminal investigation into the February 3rd death of student Timothy Piazza.

Piazza fell down a flight of stairs at the chapter house, and was not taken to the hospital until 12 hours later. His death is the focus of a criminal investigation by the State College Police Department and an internal investigation by the Office of Student Conduct.


WPSU’s Greg Petersen talks with Republican Pennsylvania Senator Jake Corman about Governor Tom Wolf’s just-released state budget.  Corman represents the 34th Senatorial District, which includes all of Centre, Mifflin, and Juniata Counties and part of Huntingdon County.  Senator Corman serves as the majority leader in the State Senate.   

Eleanor Klibanoff / WPSU



Brian Davis is well-known around campus, and not just because the Penn State junior is always wearing a suit. He’s triple majoring and double minoring, is actively involved in organizations across campus and has the ear of the University’s president.


But that’s not where his story begins.


Donald Trump
Mark Wilson / Getty Images

President Trump held a news conference in the East Room of the White House on Thursday.

In an event arranged the same morning, he first announced his new pick for Labor Secretary, Alexander Acosta, a law school dean and former US Attorney. He made an extended opening statement in defense of his administration, trumpeting accomplishments and blasting his critics and the news media. He then opened the floor for questions, which lasted more than an hour.

 Biyun Song and her grandma on a snowy mountain
Biyun Song

My grandma is 60 years older than me. But that doesn’t stop us from traveling together.

Our footprints cover many regions of the world -- from Sichuan, China to Taiwan, from Thailand to South Korea, from France to Italy. We have been traveling together for more than 15 years.


NPR Stories

Flooding in San Jose, Calif., has prompted the evacuation of at least 14,000 residents.

The mandatory evacuation orders began overnight, and will remain in effect for at least another day, reports Peter Jon Shuler of member station KQED.

"Flooding along Coyote Creek came after a series of heavy rainstorms combined with water rushing down the spillway of nearby Anderson Reservoir, which is now filled to capacity," he says. "Emergency crews had to rescue more than 250 people from their homes by boat."

Ever since Donald Trump entered the presidential race, his comments on illegal immigration have been pored over in the press — from vows to deport millions of people to promises that any enforcement plan would have "a lot of heart." Observers asked, again and again, how rhetoric would translate into actual policy.

Now activists and experts have the policies themselves to examine.

When you win an election, opposition can seem kind of, well, manufactured.

Asked about the protests facing members of Congress back home this week, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said, "Some people are clearly upset, but there is a bit of professional protester, manufactured base in there."

Episode 654: When The Boats Arrive

4 hours ago

This episode originally ran in 2015.

In 1980, Fidel Castro had a problem. The Cuban economy was in shambles. And there was open dissent in his tightly controlled country. People wanted to leave.

Castro said they didn't 'have revolutionary blood.' So he decided, you know what? If you don't like it here, you can leave. Get on any boat you can find at the port of Mariel, near Havana.

Local law enforcement officers have arrested some people who chose not to evacuate federal land near part of the Dakota Access Pipeline north of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Most protesters had left earlier. At dusk, police moved back, and said they would not enter the camp at that time.

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GOP Considers Trimming Health Law's 10 Essential Benefits

As Republicans look at ways to replace or repair the Affordable Care Act, many suggest that shrinking the list of services that insurers are required to offer in individual and small group plans would reduce costs and increase flexibility. That option came to the forefront last week when Seema Verma , who is slated to run the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in the Trump administration, noted at her confirmation hearing that coverage for maternity services should be optional in those...

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Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters Clean Up As Deadline Looms

In North Dakota, authorities set Wednesday as the deadline for the dwindling number of protesters against the Dakota Access pipeline to clean up and go home. At the main protest camp, a massive cleanup effort has been underway. Semi trucks have been hauling debris out of camp and people here are piling garbage into bags. "It looks like a trash pile. But it's getting picked up and every spot is starting to look better and better as we work together," Dotty Agard of the Standing Rock Sioux...

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Astronomers Find 7 Earth-Size Planets Around A Nearby Star A small, faint star relatively close by is home to seven Earth-size planets with conditions that could be right for liquid water and maybe even life. The discovery sets a record for both the most Earth-size planets and the most potentially habitable planets ever discovered around a single star. The strange planetary system is quite compact, with all of these worlds orbiting their star closer than Mercury orbits the sun, according to a newly published...

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Apollo 11 Space Capsule Is Going On Another Mission

The space capsule that took the first moonwalkers on their historic adventure is getting ready to take off on another trip — its first tour of the United States in more than 40 years. The Apollo 11 command module is the spacecraft that Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins rode in to the moon and back in 1969. To celebrate the upcoming 50th anniversary of that achievement, the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum is sending the space capsule to four different museums around...

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Anger Rises Across The Country At GOP Congressional Town Halls Republican members of Congress aren't exactly getting a warm welcome in their home districts during this week's recess. Angry constituents have confronted legislators at town halls across the country, upset over everything from the GOP's plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, the Trump White House's travel ban, alleged Russian interference in the U.S. elections and more. New York Rep. Tom Reed, for example,...

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What Is CPAC? A Room That Didn't Always Love Trump, But Owes Him A Lot Over the next few days, thousands of conservatives will converge on a conference center just outside of Washington, D.C., for the Conservative Political Action Conference. It's a gathering that, for the last several years at least, had a gravitational pull for any leader on the right who may have hoped to replace Barack Obama in the White House or play a role in opposing his presidency. Now that room is likely to be filled with elation since...

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Homeland Security Outlines New Rules Tightening Enforcement Of Immigration Law

Updated 5:25 p.m. ET The Trump administration is releasing more on its plans to crack down on illegal immigration, enforcing the executive orders President Trump issued in late January. Those orders called for increased border security and stricter enforcement of immigration laws. The Department of Homeland Security issued the new rules on Tuesday , laid out in two documents signed by Secretary John Kelly. "Those people who are in this country and pose a threat to our public safety, or have...

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Threat Of Obamacare Repeal Leaves Community Health Centers In Limbo

Treating people for free or for very little money has been the role of community health centers across the U.S. for decades. In 2015, 1 in 12 Americans sought care at one of these clinics; nearly 6 in 10 were women, and hundreds of thousands were veterans . The community clinics — now roughly 1,300-strong — have also expanded in recent years to serve people who gained insurance under the Affordable Care Act. In 2015, community health centers served 24.3 million people — up from 19.5 million...

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What Students Can Learn By Writing For Wikipedia

Fake news has been, well, in the news a lot lately. But for the world's largest crowdsourced encyclopedia, it's nothing new. "Wikipedia has been dealing with fake news since it started 16 years ago," notes LiAnna Davis, deputy director of the Wiki Education Foundation. To combat misinformation, Wikipedia has developed a robust corps of volunteer editors. Anyone can write new entries and scrutinize existing ones for adherence to Wikipedia's rules on sourcing and neutrality. While it's not free...

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Muslim Brotherhood, Mainstream In Many Countries, May Be Listed As Terrorist Group

It's a chilly midmorning in a clinic in the working-class neighborhood of Sweileh in Amman, Jordan. Children wearing winter coats donated by charity organizations sit on plastic chairs, waiting to see doctors and dentists. Pamphlets in the clinic, published by the Muslim Brotherhood , offer advice on being a good Muslim and instruction on how to pray. But it's not really religion that brings people here. "They come here mainly because they only pay a symbolic amount for treatment ... and all...

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From George Washington To Barack Obama, Tracing The Evolution Of Presidential Secrecy

Since the formation of the United States, presidents have struggled with what to keep secret from the American people and what to reveal. As co-director of the Transparency Policy Project at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Mary Graham has studied how various presidents have handled the problem over the years. Graham joins Here & Now s Jeremy Hobson to talk about her new book " Presidents Secrets: The Use and Abuse of Hidden Power ." Book Excerpt: Presidents Secrets By Mary Graham...

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How 3 American Families Went Off The Grid In Search Of A Simpler Life

The American quest for authenticity and a simpler life amid consumerism and the onslaught of modernity has long been a part of our nations history. In his new book The Unsettlers: In Search Of The Good Life In Todays America , author  Mark Sundeen  follows modern homesteaders whove gone off the grid and taken other radical steps to live differently. Sundeen ( @ SundeenMark ), a correspondent for Outside Magazine, profiles three families who try to break away from global capitalism and live a...

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Grad Student Discovers A Lost Novel Written By Walt Whitman

Updated at 4:10 p.m. ET A literary treasure buried for more than a century has been unearthed by Zachary Turpin, a grad student at the University of Houston. It's a work of short fiction: a 36,000-word novella published anonymously, in six parts, in a New York newspaper in 1852. The discursive nature of the manuscript's full title — Life and Adventures of Jack Engle: An Auto-Biography; In Which The Reader Will Find Some Familiar Characters -- places it squarely in its literary era, as does...

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Adolescence Isn't The Only Horror In 'The Mercy Of The Tide'

Riptide, Ore., is a place to get lost in — not that you'd necessarily want to. It's 1983, and the sleepy coastal town is starting to get weird: Mutilated animals are turning up on the beach at Wolf Point, and the discovery of the skeleton of a Native American girl from over a century ago sparks something even stranger. Some kind of supernatural force appears to be on a rampage in Riptide, although its residents have plenty of man-made horrors to be concerned about as well. A recent, fatal car...

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Faces Of NPR: Adam Cole

Faces Of NPR is a weekly feature that showcases the people behind NPR, from the voices you hear every day on the radio to the ones who work outside of the recording studio. You'll find out about what they do and what they're inspired by on the daily. This week's post features Science Desk Reporter and Skunk Bear host, Adam Cole . The Basics: Name: Adam Cole Twitter Handle: @cadamole Job Title: Reporter Where You're From: Corvallis, Oregon! An Inside Look: You're a reporter and producer for...

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Cannibalism: It's 'Perfectly Natural,' A New Scientific History Argues

There are very few scenarios where I could see myself considering the flesh of a fellow human being as food, and the ultimatum "eat today or die tomorrow" comes up in all of them. Most people are probably with me on this. But Bill Schutt's newest book, Ca nnibalism: A Perfectly Natural History , reveals that from a scientific perspective, there's a predictable calculus for when humans and animals go cannibal. And far more humans — and animals — have dipped into the world of cannibalism than...

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Take Note: Mike Hanna

Friday at 1:00pm, we'll talk with Democratic Pennsylvania State Rep. Mike Hanna about Gov. Wolf's budget proposal. (Last week, we spoke with GOP State Sen. Jake Corman.)

Enter WPSU's Art For The Airwaves Contest!

The winning work will be reproduced as a limited edition poster, offered as a "thank-you" gift during our April fund drive. The deadline is 5:00pm on February 28th.

Keystone Crossroads: Rust or Revival? explores the urgent challenges pressing upon Pennsylvania's cities. WPSU is a contributing station.

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Turn Your Old Car into Public Radio!

Got an old car? The Car Talk Vehicle Donation Program will take it off your hands & turn it into great public radio on WPSU-FM. To donate your car, visit the link below or call 1-866-789-8627. Thanks!

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Public Radio for Central & Northern Pennsylvania

Hear WPSU-FM on the radio at the frequencies listed above, or stream WPSU-FM and our two HD channels right here by clicking the LISTEN LIVE button.

WPSU's Community Calendar

Find out what's happening in Central & Northern PA on WPSU's Community Calendar! Submit your group's event at least 2 weeks in advance, and you might hear it announced on WPSU-FM.

Reasons To Stay

WPSU's series "Reasons to Stay" explores what keeps people in central Pa. On the radio during Morning Edition, and on our multi-media website.

Add your voice!

Write an essay for WPSU's This I Believe or BookMark.

WPSU's Local Food Journey

Our Local Food Journey blog explores what it means to eat local in Central and Northern Pennsylvania.