Macon County Sheriff's Office

Clerical Error Helps One Mountain Community Fight Harder Against Opioids

In the midst of a national opioid addiction crisis, doctors in North Carolina are prescribing more and more painkillers. Western North Carolina is no exception, according to reports. But a simple clerical error from one such report has helped motivate one mountain community to better tackle the crisis at home. Back in January, the North Carolina Department of Health reported that some 257 pills per person were prescribed in Macon County last year—the highest ratio in the state. For a rural...

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The State of Things

“The State of Things” covers diverse issues & topics in NC. Frank Stasio talks to authors, musicians, politicians, & citizens about subjects that matter to North Carolinians.

Second of two stories. Click here for the first.

North Carolina is one of just two states that automatically charges 16- and 17-year-olds as adults in the criminal justice system. But in several counties, the court system is working with local law enforcement to give would-be young offenders a second chance.

President Trump was downright low energy.

The look on his face, as he meandered through unscripted remarks Friday after the defeat of the Republican health care plan he supported, told the story. The unusually subdued Trump called the loss a "learning experience." Then he seemed to shrug it all off and said he was moving on.

What's it like to sue President Trump? For Jeffrey Lovitky, with a one-lawyer firm in Washington, D.C., it's not a great feeling.

"It is intimidating. I am intimidated," he said in an interview with NPR. "I mean, I would rather not be doing this."

But he has done it, and when he couldn't enlist anyone else to be the plaintiff, he took on that role, too.

"I think people are afraid to put their name out there on a lawsuit against the president," he said. "There is a sense that Donald Trump can be very difficult on people who oppose him."

In a rare show of force, thousands of Russians took to the streets of Moscow and other cities in the biggest anti-government protests in years.

In Moscow, police arrested hundreds of demonstrators, including prominent Russian opposition leader and anti-corruption activist, Alexei Navalny, who orchestrated the uprising. On Monday, officials announced that Navalny will serve a 15-day jail term, saying that he disobeyed police.

House Speaker Tim Moore has given his fellow Republican representatives a bit of homework this weekend.Consider a new plan which would change House Bill 2.

Change, yes, but not a full repeal. WFAE's Nick De La Canal talks with WFAE's Tom Bullock about the proposal.

NDC: Tom, let's  jump right in with the most well-known part of HB 2. Would this plan drop or change the bathroom provisions of the bill?

On this edition of the podcast, North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore speaks with Capitol Bureau Chief Jeff Tiberii. Moore (R-Cleveland) is in his 8th term of the House and his 2nd term as speaker. A day earlier in his office, Moore held a news conference to talk about House Bill 2, one year to the day after its passage. The Speaker said the bathroom provision will not be changed under his watch. He also indicated that a proposal to change the bill is being worked on, along with Senate leader Phil Berger, and could be introduced next week.

This week in state politics, Becki Gray of the John Locke Foundation and Rob Schofield of NC Policy Watch discuss efforts to change HB2 on the occasion of its first anniversary. They also discuss the first override of a Governor Cooper veto- judicial elections in North Carolina will once again be partisan contests.

Several Republican state senators are trying again this session to limit the expansion of wind power, saying new turbines could interfere with military flights. The bill filed Wednesday, the Military Operations Protection Act of 2017, would halt permits for new wind farms until studies show they are safe.

This was to have been the week when President Trump turned his fledgling presidency around, setting a course for success and letting the wind fill its sails at last.

Instead, it became his worst week to date, ending with the ship becalmed and its crew in disarray. After other controversies had spoiled the weather, the Republicans proved unable to muster the votes to pass their repeal-and-replace Obamacare bill in the House. The president and Speaker Paul Ryan had to call off the vote scheduled on the floor — not once but twice.

The numbers, in several cases, are astounding. 350.org, a climate action group, saw donations almost triple in the month after Donald Trump's election. Since Trump's win, Planned Parenthood told NPR it's gained over 600,000 new donors and more than 36,000 new volunteers. And the American Civil Liberties Union has raised more than $80 million since Nov. 8.

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Arts & Performance

Asheville Community Theatre and Drama UNC-A will co-produce the swashbuckling prequel to Peter Pan, Peter and the Starcatcher, opening Thursday evening at the Carol Belk Theatre on the UNC-Asheville campus.  Cast members Chloe Zeitounian and Alex Daly spoke with Dick Kowal about the 2012 Broadway show.

The Asheville Symphony performs the finale to this week's Asheville Amadeus Festival in a Sunday afternoon concert at Thomas Wolfe Auditorium. The featured soloist is violinist Midori, who will perform Mendelssohn's e minor Violin Concerto. Also on the program, Mozart's Symphony No. 35,  Stravinsky's  "Dumbarton Oaks" concerto, and Faure's Pavanne featuring the Asheville Symphony Chamber Chorus.

Saverio-Truglia

Black Mountain College Museum and Arts Center (our neighbors on Broadway in downtown Asheville,) presents the 7th annual {Re}Happening Saturday, March 25th at Lake Eden in Black Mountain (the site of Black Mountain College and Camp Rockmont.) The event will feature an immersive experience created by many area artists, as well as a guest appearance by Chicago based Third Coast Percussion, an ensemble steeped in the music and aesthetic of John Cage, BMC College artist.

The Asheville Choral Society celebrates the Asheville Amadeus Festival and its own 40th anniversary with a concert Friday night, March 17th, at Asheville's Central United Methodist Church. The program will feature excerpts from Mozart's Mass in C minor as well as works from the 18th to the 21st century by Vivaldi, Stephen Paulus, Jake Runestad and Dolly Parton.