Rural Communities Fall Further Behind In COVID-19 Vaccination Rates

Rural communities outside America's cities are falling further behind in the race to vaccinate against COVID-19 as President Joe Biden's Fourth of July goal to reach 70% of American adults looms over the horizon. Alaska is the sole state where average rural rates of fully vaccinated people have grown faster than urban rates since April 19, when every state opened shots to anybody 16 and older, according to NPR's latest analysis of county-level vaccination data from the Centers for Disease...

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Katie Riordan

The remains of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife were disinterred from Memphis’ Health Sciences Park on Monday. 

Officials announced Friday that the exhumed remains are being kept at an undisclosed location until their future reinterment at the National Confederate Museum in Middle Tennessee, where a more than 100-year-old equestrian statue of Forrest that once also stood in the park will too be reconstituted. 

In 2009, the Memphis Regional Megasite -- a 4,100-acre industrial complex between Memphis and Jackson -- was carved out of empty fields. However, since then there have been no tenants. On Tuesday, June 8, Gov. Bill Lee announced $52 million in funding to complete necessary infrastructure at the megasite. The Memphis Flyer’s Toby Sells says that a sewage pipeline leading to the Mississippi River is the main reason for the funding, but it “raises environmental issues”.


Jim Cooper

Tennessee may be a deep red state, but its two biggest urban areas have large concentrations of Democrats. It's why voters in two of the state's nine congressional districts -- the ninth, in Memphis and the fifth, in Nashville -- are able to elect U.S. Congressmen aligned with other urban voters. That could change.

Watch: Shelby County Joint Task Force

Jun 10, 2021

  Watch the Shelby County Joint Task Force briefing on COVID-19, from June 10 (starting at 12:00PM).

Click here to watch.

Jennifer Chandler

Up your Summer grill game by cooking fish on a cedar plank.

Christopher Blank/WKNO-FM

Republican lawmakers may have a supermajority in the Tennessee General Assembly, but their attempts to impose right-wing ideology on left-wing counties have occasionally met resistance from an unusual source -- the state's conservative courts.

Katie Riordan


Representatives from local industries affected by the protracted shutdown of the Hernando de Soto Bridge had the ear of the White House this week. 

The process of disinterring Nathan Bedford Forrest and his wife from UT Health Sciences Park has begun, years after a statue was removed by the City of Memphis. Daily Memphian reporter Bill Dries says “there was a really tense and ugly confrontation” between Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer and a laborer at the site who made “threats" to Sawyer.

Richard Banks

Waters are rising. Not just sea levels, but inland, on rivers and in communities far from any body of water. Climate change, increased development, and aging infrastructure are the main drivers behind flooding in the Midsouth, and it’s expected to get worse. Contributor Richard Banks looks at how local governments are preparing for what many expect will be an even wetter, possibly more calamitous future.

Strawberries 101

Jun 1, 2021
Keller + Keller Photography

The arrival of fresh strawberries signals the start of summer. 


The U.S. is banning the importation of dogs from more than 100 countries for at least a year because of a sharp increase in the number of puppies imported into the country with fraudulent rabies vaccination certificates.

"We're doing this to make sure that we protect the health and safety of dogs that are imported into the United States, as well as protect the public's health," Dr. Emily Pieracci of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tells NPR.

The Israeli government has banned the sale of fur in the fashion industry, becoming the first country to outlaw the controversial clothing material that opponents say leads to the slaughter of millions of animals each year.

MEXICO CITY — Investigators digging under the house of a suspected serial killer on the outskirts of Mexico City said Saturday they have found 3,787 bone fragments so far, apparently belonging to 17 different victims.

Prosecutors in the State of Mexico, which borders Mexico City, suggested the grisly finds may not end there. In excavations carried out since May 17, authorities have dug up the floors of the house where the suspect lived. They now plan to extend the search to the soil beneath several other rooms he rented out on the same property.

BATON ROUGE, La. — The children of a Black man killed by police in Louisiana's capital city five years ago have accepted a $4.5 million settlement from the local government, the man's family and the city's mayor said Friday.

Alton Sterling's 2016 shooting by a Baton Rouge police officer was captured on video and sparked anger and protests in the city's Black community.

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