Weekend Edition Sunday for Sunday, September 1, 2013

Obama's Sudden Shift On Syria

The president said has made up his mind that military action is required in Syria. And in a major surprise, he says he will seek permission from Congress to do it. Officials say that decision took him less than 24 hours to make.

Congress Gets Its Say On Syria

Many members of Congress had been clamoring for President Obama to come to Capitol Hill for permission before striking Syria, but some Republicans say he should have acted without waiting for approval. Guest host Wade Goodwyn talks with NPR's Ailsa Chang on how Congress may vote.

Pentagon Is Cautious On Possible Syria Strikes

Military officials are concerned that a limited strike against Syria could prompt the Assad regime to target civilians with more conventional weapons. Guest host Wade Goodwyn speaks with NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman.

Making It On Minimum Wage

Joanna Cruz, a New Jersey mother of three who works as a cook at a convenience store, wrote in an online essay that "too often, people think that individuals on public assistance programs are lazy. I would like for them to spend one day in my shoes." She shares what it's like to support a family on minimum wage with guest host Wade Goodwyn.

Out Of The Fields And Into Computer Science Classes

In the largely Hispanic Salinas Valley, high school students are more likely to imagine a future in agriculture than high-tech. A new program is trying to change that by helping young people who would have been working in the fields earn a bachelor's degree in three years.

College Football Season Starts

Alabama starts the year ranked No. 1, but after the playoffs, rankings will be less subjective. Guest host Wade Goodwyn checks in with NPR's Mike Pesca for a preview of the sports ahead: the start of the NFL season, the concussion settlement and a look at the 2013 college football.

Asians-Only Volleyball Brings Community Together

This Labor Day weekend, more than 1,000 athletes have gathered in Washington, D.C., to play a street version of volleyball known as "9-man." The game became popular generations ago in Chinatowns across the U.S. and Canada. Only players of Asian descent are allowed to compete in the national tournament.

Shh! Listen Carefully

Every answer is a familiar two-word phrase with the consecutive letters of S-H-H. Specifically, the first word in the answer will end in SH, and the second will start with H.
Eighty-seven-year-old restaurant critic Marilyn Hagerty gained viral fame last year with a positive review of the Olive Garden in Grand Forks, N.D. Her work has now been collected in a new book, Grand Forks: A History of American Dining in 128 Reviews.

Obama's Nod To Congress Could Be Smart Politics

Members of Congress have been arguing for a week that the president should seek their approval on a military response to Syria. Now that Obama has agreed, it may be a case of "careful what you wish for." Guest host Wade Goodwyn asks NPR political correspondent Mara Liasson what Congress might do.

What One GOP Congressman Would Do About Syria

Republican Rep. Tom McClintock of California lobbied heavily for President Obama to seek congressional approval for military intervention in Syria. McClintock speaks to guest host Wade Goodwyn about the debate ahead.
The Syrian president's supporters celebrated when President Obama announced he would seek Congress's approval for a military strike. But rebel forces fighting for President Bashar Assad's ouster were dismayed.

In The Classroom, Jill Biden Is A Teacher First

Jill Biden is best known as wife to Vice President Joe Biden, but she also has been a teacher for more than three decades. She joins NPR's Rachel Martin to talk about her challenges and successes as an educator.

Texas Megachurch At Center Of Measles Outbreak

Measles was declared eliminated in the U.S. more than a decade ago, but the disease has cropped up again in communities with low vaccination rates. In North Texas last month, 21 people came down with the disease, which began at a vaccine-skeptical megachurch.
After nearly 30 years, the program that brought thousands of Jews from Ethiopia to Israel has come to an end.
Carlos'n Charlie's, a restaurant on Austin's Lake Travis that has long been a place for boaters and bathers to hang out in the summer, is closing its doors after Labor Day because the lake has receded. Guest host Wade Goodwyn speaks with Pete Clark, part-owner of the restaurant.

The Private War Of J.D. Salinger

Authors Shane Salerno and David Shields spent nine years doing research for Salinger, a new book about one of America's most revered writers. Salerno talks to Weekend Edition Sunday guest host Wade Goodwyn about Salinger's life and the stories behind his work.

A Brother Duo Digs Deep For Delta Blues

Weekend Edition Sunday speaks with Luther and Cody Dickinson from the North Mississippi Allstars. Their new album, World Boogie Is Coming, continues the brothers' passion for keeping alive deep blues traditions, mixed with driving southern rock.
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