Damage to a tree in Yukon following last week's ice storm.
Zane LaCroix / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Oklahoma’s State Climatologist Recaps November’s Turbulent Weather, Looks Ahead To December

Record-setting weather, plus tornadoes, flooding, and a significant ice storm that shut down the state over the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend all came during what the state climatologist called one of the “wildest stretches” of November weather in Oklahoma’s history. Gary McManus said Tuesday morning the first storm that hit the state in mid-November seemed more like a spring severe weather event, with supercells generating seven tornadoes in this state, and more in Oklahoma’s northern...
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Oklahoma earned a score of 59, an F — one of 11 states to receive a failing grade in the State Integrity Investigation. In 2012, Oklahoma scored a D on the State Integrity Investigation, ranking 38th. The two scores are not directly comparable, however, due to changes made to improve and update the questions and methodology, such as eliminating the category for redistricting, a process that generally occurs only once every 10 years.

25-year-old Adacia Avery Chambers
Stillwater Police Department

Updated 4:46 p.m. 

After weeks of publicity, a judge has issued a gag order in the case of the woman suspected of driving her car into a crowd of spectators at the Oklahoma State University homecoming parade.

Adacia Chambers made her second appearance in court to be arraigned on four counts of second degree murder and 46 counts of assault, but while she was there, District Judge Louis Duel also ruled on motions filed by the prosecution.

Principal Chief, George Tiger of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation in Okmulgee, OK, on Tuesday, Apr. 7, 2015.
U.S. Department of Agriculture / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Voters in the Muscogee (Creek) Nation ousted their principal chief in Saturday’s general election.

Outgoing chief George Tiger’s term has been mired in controversy, including calls for his removal from office earlier this year.

By an almost two-to-one margin, Creek citizens elected James Floyd the tribe’s new principal chief . He’s the retired director of a Veterans Administration medical center in Muskogee, and has also worked with the Indian Health Services.

Former migrant farmworker Angel Castro stands in front of his old trailer in a neighborhood housing many immigrant farmworkers.
Kristofor Husted / Harvest Public Media

The rural areas in the U.S. where immigrant workers that pick crops like cotton and melons find work often lack the social services and affordable housing vital to integrating new arrivals into a community. That means many farmworker families end up in dilapidated buildings, which can come with health risks.

Migrant workers planting roots

Angel Castro’s old road is muddy and covered with flooded potholes. He lived here during the 1990s just behind a large John Deere store in Kennett, Mo.

The Great Listen 2015

Nov 8, 2015

November 8, 2015

This is from the Manager’s Desk.

In the midst of planning your Thanksgiving holiday, Story Corp has another activity that I’m asking you to build into the weekend with family and friends. It’s called the Great Listen of 2015. You know StoryCorps – that great story every Friday morning of a loved one interviewing another about their life.

StoryCorps is encouraging everyone – especially children-- to record an interview with an older relative or friend to preserve a generation’s experiences.

Home health nurse Rita Nuss reads a book to 9-year-old Josiah Melton, who has  chromosomal disorders and is on the developmental disabilities services waiting list.
Clifton Adcock / Oklahoma Watch

After decreasing last year, the waiting list for a state program that provides services to Oklahomans with developmental and intellectual disabilities has grown again, to the highest level ever.

As of Oct. 15, the wait time for those seeking state-paid services for their developmental disabilities was nearly a decade, according to the Oklahoma Department of Human Services. The number of people on the waiting list grew from 6,992 in July 2014 to 7,239 in October this year.

(Left-to-right) Benjamin Von Gutzeit, Mateusz Smoczynski, Mark Summer, & David Balakrishnan of the Turtle Island Quartet
Bill Reitzel / turtleislandquartet.com

The traditional string quartet has staying power. Austrian composer Joseph Haydn legitimized the combination of viola, cello and two violins during the mid-1700s, and it’s still one of the most prominent chamber ensembles in music. It’s an old format, but one that’s becoming more flexible.

“The Turtle Island Quartet was expressly formed to get us string players off the page, so to speak,” says David Balakrishnan. “That’s the easy way to say (it).”

"...a thoroughly modern sculpture by the Scandinavian artist Clara Sörnäs.   It shows five slave figures, slightly larger than life, chained together in a pit.
missy & the universe / Flickr

Iran only abolished slavery in 1928, but since then, it’s been largely erased from the national consciousness. Historian Beeta Baghoolizadeh, who studies Iranian slavery, says the taboo surrounding slavery and Iran’s effort to distance itself from its past is due to its precarious position on the world stage 87 years later.

Ending a process that has lingered for much of his time in the Oval Office, President Obama announced Friday that the U.S. has rejected TransCanada's application for a permit to complete the Keystone XL pipeline.

A 2014 photo of MetroJet EI-ETJ, the Airbus A321-231 that crashed in Egypt Saturday.
Sergey Korovkin / Wikimedia Commons

There’s still no definitive indication as to what caused Saturday’s crash of a Russian passenger jet, despite reports that a bomb caused the plane to disintegrate mid-flight, Russian and Egyptian officials reject the assumption, although the U.S. has said satellite imagery showed a big flash near the plane before it crashed in the Sinai region of Egypt. Islamic State rebels have claimed responsibility for the crash.