Leila Fadel

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For two weeks now, rescue workers in Surfside, Fla., have been removing concrete rubble from a site that used to be a condominium building.

(SOUNDBITE OF BUCKET THUMPING)

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Updated June 17, 2021 at 9:34 AM ET

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has declared that the variant of coronavirus first detected in India is a variant of concern, meaning it poses a significant threat to those who are not vaccinated.

The Delta variant, also known as B.1.617.2, is the most contagious yet. The CDC estimates that it may be responsible for nearly 10% of all new COVID-19 infections in the United States. In some Western U.S. states, the variant may be responsible for nearly 20% of cases.

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President Biden is back at the White House this morning after his high-profile summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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Last week Derek Chauvin, the ex-Minneapolis police officer accused of killing George Floyd, was convicted on two counts of murder and one count of manslaughter. Chauvin was cuffed and hauled off to prison to await sentencing.

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Derek Chauvin is in a jail cell this morning after being found guilty of murder and manslaughter. In reaction yesterday, George Floyd Square in Minneapolis sounded like this.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: George Floyd.

For months, stories swirled around a prominent Muslim civil rights leader, alleging secret marriages, bullying, sexual harassment.

Then, late last year, some of the allegations against 34-year-old Hassan Shibly burst into public view. In a video posted on GoFundMe, Shibly's estranged wife, mother of their three children, looked directly into the camera and begged for help. She said her abusive husband had cut her off financially.

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Jury selection is complete in the high-profile murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. It took about two weeks to pick the jury in a slow and deliberate process to seat an impartial jury in a case that's been publicized around the world.

Opening statements are scheduled to begin on Monday. The court chose fifteen jurors. Twelve will sit on the jury and two will be alternates. The final person chosen on Tuesday, an accountant, will be dismissed next week if the other fourteen show up.

On a recent Friday afternoon, the critical care charge nurse at a South Los Angeles hospital tries to send another nurse off to grab lunch. Maria Arechiga is interrupted by the beeping of an alarm, the vitals of a patient declining, organs failing.

She dons a surgical gown and unzips a plastic tarp that hangs from the doorway of a hospital room — a makeshift isolation room on this floor temporarily transformed into a larger intensive care unit to make space for the patients that just keep coming. She slips inside.

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From her couch in Minneapolis, Nuny Nichols watched a mob of largely white extremists stage an insurrection in Washington, D.C., set up a noose on a wooden beam outside the U.S. Capitol and walk a symbol of violence and slavery — the Confederate flag — through the building as they stormed and raided it.

She was angry, but she was not surprised at the way people in the mob laughed as they took things from the building. There were white extremists who felt at ease giving their names to media outlets and taking selfies with a white police officer.

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Reymundo Torres is an Arizonan, a devout Roman Catholic, ethnically Mexican and a staunch supporter of the president.

"The thing that initially attracted me and keeps me tied to him is that he has taught Republicans how to not just win, but no longer throw our faces and bodies in front of every punch that the left is willing to throw," Torres said.

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Soon after being discharged from the hospital for treatment for COVID-19, President Trump tweeted the slur "Chinese virus" to refer to the coronavirus, something he's often repeated during the pandemic.

It's the latest example of Trump's alarming language that critics charge is xenophobic, discriminatory and even white supremacist. While Trump denies those labels, he has increasingly returned to the issue of race in the runup to the November election.

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The corner of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue in south Minneapolis is the place where police brutality ended the life of a black man named George Floyd on May 25, 2020.

It was here that police officers held down the 46-year-old man that people called Perry, until his pulse stopped. It was here where a passerby filmed his killing, shared it online and sparked an uprising that's spread from this one corner to cities across the country, and now the world.

And it's here now where people gather every day to protest, to remember and to find comfort.

Cesia Baires knocks on the three apartment doors above her restaurant and a neighboring taqueria just before curfew.

A woman opens the door. Her two young children are inside.

"Remember," she says to them in Spanish. "Same thing as yesterday. I'm going to come check on you. If there's anything you guys need, give us a call right away."

On the south side of Minneapolis over the weekend, Safia Munye and her family walk up to the door of what was Mama Safia's Kitchen.

A volunteer from the neighborhood walks out onto Lake Street.

"Is this your business?" she asks.

Safia and her daughter Saida Hassan nod silently.

"I'm sorry," the woman says.

It's the first time they've seen it since fiery protests erupted among cries for racial justice and as state troopers in riot gear blocked the road to this street.

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As of Friday in Texas, you can go to a tanning salon. In Indiana, houses of worship are being allowed to open with no cap on attendance. Places like Pennsylvania are taking a more cautious approach, only starting to ease restrictions in some counties based on the number of COVID-19 cases.

By Monday, at least 31 states will have partially reopened after seven weeks of restrictions. The moves come as President Trump pushes for the country to get back to work despite public health experts warning that it's too soon.

Updated at 9:00 a.m. ET

Michelle Sweeney could barely sleep. The nurse in Plymouth, Mass., had just learned she would be furloughed. She only had four hours the next day to call all of her patients.

"I was in a panic state. I was sick over it," Sweeney said. "Our patients are the frailest, sickest group."

Sweeney works for Atrius Health as a case manager for patients with chronic health conditions and those who have been discharged from the hospital or emergency room.

In their tiny apartment just outside Minneapolis, Sarah Alfaham directs her husband Mohamed Ahmed to hold up the gold curtains she picked up at Walmart.

She takes a look.

"I like it," she says.

With thumbtacks, string and dowels, Alfaham fashions a canopy in the corner of their living room with a homemade navy blue and gold "Ramadan Mubarak" sign underneath. On the floor is a prayer rug.

"It's just really creating a mosque feel inside your house in a sense. I don't know how else to do it," she says with a laugh.

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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

At one New York City hospital, a doctor's used mask tore as she performed CPR on her infected patient.

In Seattle, a nurse compares walking into her intensive care unit to bathing in COVID-19.

And in St. Louis, a nurse slips her used N95 mask into a paper bag at the end of her shift and prays that it's disinfected properly.

These are scenes playing out in hospitals across the country, based on interviews with more than a dozen residents, doctors and nurses who go into work every day feeling unprotected from the disease they're supposed to treat.

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