School Lunches Now Come With a Serving of Politics | How Do They Do That? Olympic Speed Skating | Top Dog Selected As Westminster Crowns Best In Show

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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A student uses a fingerprint scanner to pay for lunch at an elementary school. (William Thomas Cain/Getty)

Syrians Evacuated From Homs Amid Cease-Fire | Massive Winter Storm Wreaks Havoc on Southern States | How Do They Do That? Olympic Speed Skating | Warm Weather Brings Danger to Alaska | Top Dog Selected As Westminster Crowns Best In Show | Corn, Sugar Industries Use Sweet Talk to Influence Public | Across America, School Lunches Now Come With a Serving of Politics

Massive Winter Storm Wreaks Havoc on The South

Ice and a nasty wintry mix is causing major problems in states from Louisiana to North Carolina, effectively shutting down roads, closing schools, and cancelling flights nationwide. According to reports, the sleet, snow and freezing rain has left more than 100,000 homes and businesses without power. To get a sense of how people are coping, The Takeaway turns to Joshua Stewart, Morning Edition Host for Georgia Public Broadcasting; Pat Duggins, News Director for Alabama Public Radio; and Kearns Little the co-owner of Little Hardware in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Syrians Evacuated Amid Cease-Fire

Thanks to a fragile but extended truce, the United Nations has been helping move hundreds out of the old city of Homs, but thousands of Syrians—including children, the sick and the injured—remain. Dina Elkassaby is in the Syrian capital of Damascus. She works for the U.N.'s World Food Program and describes how her aid agency is working to assist evacuees amid the cease-fire.

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Westminster Crowns Best In Show

The top dogs have been separated from the under dogs, crowning one canine best in show. This year there were nearly 3,000 entrants from around the world at the 138th Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. But in the end, the judges could crown only one and they selected a 5-year-old wire fox terrier named Sky, giving that breed its 14th win in the 138th edition of Westminster. Here to tell us more about the winner, the losers, and the headline makers is Sarah Montague, WNYC’s resident dog expert.

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School Lunches Come With a Serving of Politics

Last year, more than 5 billion school lunches were served to over 30 million students across the country through The National School Lunch Program. In total, more than 224 billion lunches have been served since the program’s start. But with every lunch comes new criticism of the program. Marion Nestle, professor of Nutrition and Food Studies and Public Health at New York University, has given this issue much thought. She joins The Takeaway to discuss the main obstacles to better lunches and what the lunch program of the future should look like.

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Today's Highlights | February 12, 2014

Also On Today's Show: Alaska has been experiencing abnormally warm weather this winter, which is presenting all sorts of challenges and even dangers...A federal lawsuit reveals that the corn refinery and sugar industries secretly funded Washington-based non profits and experts to grab market share and promote health risks of the opposing party's products.

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