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Stories by Megan Burke

What Does Mapping The Brain Actually Mean?

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UC San Diego is a regional hub for the new Cal-BRAIN project. KPBS Midday talked to the one of the brains behind the group about how this state project fits in to the president's brain mapping initiative.

40 Years Of Pride In San Diego

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The world has changed fundamentally for gays and lesbians since the first Pride Parade in San Diego. This month marks the 40th anniversary of the parade and celebration. And the change continues, with Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday signing a law to recognize legal same-sex marriage in the state code.

Rep. Susan Davis Weighs In On U.S. Immigration Policy And More

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We speak to Rep. Susan Davis about the emergency of unaccompanied children crossing the border, the advance of ISIS insurgents in Iraq and the challenge posed to Obamacare by the Hobby Lobby decision.

Exhibition Celebrates Work By San Diego Artists Baldessari, Baldwin, Morris And Matheny

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An exhibition of the work of four mid-century San Diego artists gets underway the July 4 weekend at the Oceanside Museum of Art. The show is called "Spitting in the Wind: Art From The End of the Line."

NCTD Chief Answers Questions About Agency Turnover

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The executive director of the North County Transit District, Matthew Tucker, responds to investigations that raise troubling questions about his agency.

How Much Of The Immigration Process Can Obama Change By Executive Action?

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A frustrated President Obama says he's no longer waiting for a stalled Congress to take action and he'll use what powers he has to reform immigration. But what can he do?

Scientists Descending On San Diego Bars Thursday Night To Answer Questions From Regular People

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An offbeat outing, called "Two Scientists Walk Into A Bar," will take place at 25 watering holes around San Diego on Thursday, June 26 between 5-9:30 p.m.

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What To Do With Your Money: Estate Planning Tips

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Think you've pulled together a good estate plan? Or maybe you think you don't need one. Here's some of the common mistakes that get people and their heirs into trouble.

San Diegans Offered Ways To Save Water By Remaking Their Yards

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The San Diego County Water Authority, which is launching free classes to help people make water-wise yard makeovers, joins garden expert Nan Sterman to offer tips.

Social Media Site Connects Patients Suffering From Similar Illnesses

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A new social media site connecting patients diagnosed with similar illnesses is one of the ways technology could be transforming the future of healthcare.

Iraq Humanitarian Crisis Is Personal In San Diego

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San Diego County is home to nearly 80,000 Iraqis and thousands of veterans of Operation Iraqi freedom — two groups with a lot at stake in the future of Iraq.

James Hubbell Opens Home, Studios For Public Tours On Father's Day

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In what has become a Father's Day tradition for more than 30 years, the artists James and Anne Hubbell will open their home and art studio in Santa Ysabel to the public this Sunday June 15.

California Teacher Tenure Law Ruled Unconstitutional

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Los Angeles County Superior Court judge Tuesday ruled in favor of nine students who sued the state saying tenure and seniority policies have made it virtually impossible to fire bad teachers.

California Chrome's Next Race May Be At Del Mar

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Though California Chrome's Triple Crown hopes were dashed this weekend when the horse tied for fourth place in the Belmont Stakes, the 3-year-old's career is far from over.

Are Charter Cities Good Or Bad For Taxpayers?

California’s charter cities have come under scrutiny in recent years because of three high-profile municipal bankruptcies. Locally, San Diego is the largest of eight charter cities in the county. Escondido is also flirting with the idea of becoming a charter city. But there is disagreement over whether charter cities are good for taxpayers.

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Cartoonist Steve Breen Inspired By Kids For His New Book

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A Tyrannosaurus Rex eating Donald Trump, Miley Cyclops and Santa Claus blowing up a Nazi with a bazooka — these are some images from the wild imagination of Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Steve Breen and his kids.

Program Aims To Help Every Californian Reduce Energy Use By 10 Percent Per Year

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Californians are being asked to reduce their home energy use by 40 percent. The goal is in line with the state's aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

San Diego Political Legend Tom Hom Talks About 'Bumpy Road' To American Dream

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Tom Hom, the first Asian-American to serve on the San Diego City Council, opens up in a new memoir about growing up in San Diego and the challenges to achieving the American dream.

Documentary Chronicles History, Culture Of San Diego's 'First People'

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New documentary airing on KPBS is full of fascinating details about the ancient Kumeyaay way of life.

Swimming The 1,777-Mile Danube River For A Good Cause

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Mimi Hughes has embarked on a number of marathon swims, including the Tennessee, Ohio and — most-challenging — Danube rivers for social and environmental causes.

How To Deal With San Diego's Stressful Fire Outbreak

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How are San Diegans dealing with multiple fires and the anxiety, stress and fear that goes along with evacuations, power outages and watching homes burn? We get an update on the fire and talk to a mental health expert.

Writer Ruth Reichl Sees The World Food First

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Former New York Times food critic and writer Ruth Reichl sees the world food first. We'll hear about her first novel, 'Delicious' and her thoughts on the legacy of "Gourmet" magazine. Reichl will be at the Chino Farm on May 18

New Bias Seen In Workplace: Treating Race As A Qualification

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In his recent Op-Ed in The New York Times, Skrentny warns that too much reliance on matching race and ethnicity between employees and customers or teachers and students could lead to a new form of racial discrimination.

San Diego Climate Change Symposium Focuses On Role Of Energy

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The San Diego World Affairs Council is bringing together environmental nonprofits with local companies in an effort to form a meeting of the minds on power needs of the future.

Scientists Coming To San Diego To Talk About Roots Of Human Violence

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Men have been at the forefront of human aggression and violence since pre-historic times, now UC San Diego and Salk Institute are bringing scientists from around the world to San Diego to examine why. A public symposium will be held May 16.

Local Farmers Help San Diegans Connect To Their Roots Through Agriculture

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The New Roots urban farm in City Heights was set up to help new refugees to San Diego use their skills to help put food on the table. Now, the expanding farm has become a business.

Federal Report: Warming Disrupts Americans' Lives

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Global warming rapidly is turning America the beautiful into America the stormy, sneezy and dangerous, according to a new federal scientific report. And those shining seas? Rising and costly, the report says.

San Diegans Pitch Their Creations At 'Inventors Day' Event

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The folks from Telebrands are in San Diego Thursday to host their annual "Telebrands Inventors Day" that invites people to show them their creations.

San Diego Climate Researcher To Lead Vatican Discussion On Climate Change

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Ram Ramanathan, a distinguished professor of atmospheric and climate sciences at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, has been studying global warming since the 1970s. This weekend, he has an audience with Pope Francis.

New Book Explores The End Of Suburban Sprawl

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It used to be part of the American dream to escape the city and build a life in the suburbs. But that dream now is fading, as people turn away from suburban sprawl. We'll hear how San Diego is moving toward a new urbanism.

It's A Handmade Revolution At Maker's Arcade Saturday In Barrio Logan

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Handmade jewelry, fabrics, clothing, art and paper goods by San Diego artists and crafters will all be on this display this Saturday at the Maker's Arcade.

California Voter Registration Website Now Available In 10 Languages

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The state's voter registration website is now available in 10 languages. The question is, will those improvements to the website actually increase voter turnout in our increasingly multi-cultural state?

UC San Diego Researcher Traces American History Of Democracy, Racist Immigration Laws

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The U.S. has barred people based on race longer than any other country in the western hemisphere. A new book co-authored by a UC San Diego researcher looks at the history of democracy and racist immigration policy in the Americas.

U.N. Report: Avoiding Climate Change Possible With 'Substantial Emission Reductions'

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The U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has just released its fifth report on the rapidly closing window of time to take action on reducing greenhouse gases.

San Diego Health Report Card Shows No Improvement In Child Immunization Rate

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Every two years, The Children's Initiative offers a detailed analysis of 25 key indicators of the health and well being of children throughout San Diego County. But the Report Card goes beyond metrics. It also reveals why the findings are important and recommends ways to improve each problem.

Mexico's Drug-Related Homicides Are Down But Not In Tijuana

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A University of San Diego report on drug violence in Mexico finds that homicides are down overall in the country, but the number of killings in Tijuana is up from 2012.

Some Coachella Bands To Make Pit Stop In San Diego

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For the next two weekends, hundreds of thousands of people will attend the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. But those without a ticket can still see some of the festival's stars here at home.

Organization Provides Health Care To Poorest People In The World

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We're all used to seeing the images of sick and desperate people in the poorest nations of the world. Some of us may be moved to send a donation, many of us will simply be thankful that our lives are better off. Only a few of us see those images and say this must change. Paul Farmer is one of those few.

New Medicare Program To Allow Some Hospice Patients More Treatment Choices

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A KPBS series on end of life care, focused on the gap in insurance coverage for hospice patients who wanted certain medical procedures. Now, Medicare is conducting a test program to combine hospice and curative care.

Should E-Cigarettes Be Treated Like Cigarettes?

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The introduction of e-cigarettes, depending on who you talk to, is either an appealing alternative to help addicted current smokers give up tobacco or gateway devices for a new generation of tobacco smokers.

Encinitas To Spend $10 Million To Keep Coastal Property Public

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The Encinitas City Council voted recently to buy the Pacific View Elementary school site for $10 million in an effort to prevent a prime piece of public land from falling into private developers hands.

Washington Landslide A Wake-Up Call About Threat Of Natural Disasters In San Diego

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As of the latest update, officials say 29 bodies have been recovered from the collapse of the Hazel Slide in the town of Oso. Another 20 people are still reported missing.

Is Drone Journalism The Next Big Thing?

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Essential equipment for reporters might expand from cellphones to drones. We'll talk about the expanding field of drones and journalism.

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San Diego Opera Announces Current Season Will Be Its Last

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After nearly a half century on stage, San Diego Opera is taking its final bow on April 13. Its board voted 33-1 Wednesday to fold amid financial concerns.

San Diego Opera Stars Teaching Young Vocalists What It Takes To Get To The Stage

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The San Diego Opera is recognizing the budding vocal talent on San Diego college campuses by establishing a partnership with San Diego State University, the University of San Diego and Point Loma Nazarene University.

Author Looks To Animals For Deeper Understanding Of Good And Evil

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A new book points out that human beings, as the master predators are without a doubt the biggest killers on the planet.

Young San Diego Filmmaker Attempts To Tell The 'Truth' About Sex Trafficking

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In a second report on the illegal sex trade in San Diego, a local teenager talks about her new documentary called "TRUTH."

Study: San Diego Street Gangs Deeply Involved In Commercial Sex Trade

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The study documents what local law enforcement officials already know, that many of the sex workers in the San Diego region are vulnerable young women, forced or manipulated into a trade that is highly profitable

San Diego's First Female Police Chief Says She Welcomes Sex-Abuse Audit Of Department

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San Diego's new police chief, Shelley Zimmerman, is a 31-year veteran on the force. She is now one of only eight women police chiefs in major U.S. cities.

Report: 38 Percent Of San Diegans Can't Make Ends Meet

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The latest numbers on income versus cost of living in San Diego finds that 38 percent of families in the region can't make ends meet.