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  • CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS.

  • We`re wrapping up April by starting in Syria.

  • That country civil war has been going on since 2011, it started with people calling for Syria`s president to leave power.

  • Yesterday, the violence targeted the Syrian prime minister.

  • Wael Al Halqi reportedly survived a bombing attack on his motorcade.

  • Several other people were killed or injured, and no one immediately took responsibility for this attack.

  • Last week, the U.S. government announced that it had evidence of chemical weapons being used in Syria.

  • It wasn`t clear which side in the war was using these weapons.

  • President Obama has previously said that chemical weapons would cross a so-called "red line" and might push the U.S. to take more action in Syria.

  • A Russian official warned countries like the U.S. against using the issue of chemical weapons to overthrow Syria`s government.

  • UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: See if you can I.D. me.

  • I`m part of the U.S. government whose leader is a member of the presidential cabinet.

  • Right now that leader is Ray LaHood.

  • My agencies include the Federal Aviation Administration, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

  • I`m the U.S. Department of Transportation, and I was established in 1966.

  • AZUZ: Secretary LaHood has run the Transportation Department for four years,

  • but in January he announced his plan to step down, along with some other cabinet members.

  • That`s Secretary LaHood in the right side of your screen behind President Obama.

  • On the left side, Charlotte, North Carolina Mayor Anthony Foxx.

  • He`s the president`s pick to be the next secretary of Transportation.

  • The president doesn`t get the final say on that, it`s the U.S. Senate`s job to approve presidential nominees.

  • If Foxx is approved, he`ll be the first African-American added to the president`s second term cabinet.

  • Foxx has been the mayor of Charlotte for nearly four years, but he doesn`t have a background in transportation issues.

  • George Washington was a great leader and a great president,

  • but when I reach in my wallet I`d rather see Ben Franklin,

  • that semi-smiling C-note smirk seems to say, "I`m a 100 times better."

  • It`s certainly more popular overseas.

  • Of all the American hundred dollar bills in existence 65 percent of them are held outside the U.S.

  • That`s part of the reason while the Federal Reserve is changing it.

  • It`s the fourth time they`ve done this.

  • They`re trying to make it easier to be sure a bill is genuine and harder to counterfeit it.

  • The new hundred has a blue ribbon. Why?

  • Because it`s a winner.

  • No, it`s actually a 3D strip that appears to change when you move it, adding a new dimension of security.

  • Same idea behind the bell and the ink well.

  • The Federal Reserve plans to start circulating the new Benjamins this October after spending more than ten years coming up with the changes.

  • Maybe not everyone agrees they`re needed,

  • but Bennie himself once said, when you`re finished changing, you`re finished, and his bill shows no signs of folding.

  • All right, next stop today: Jason Collins - he did something yesterday that hasn`t happened in the NFL, NBA, NHL or MLB.

  • He announced that he is gay.

  • Collins has played in the National Basketball Association for 12 seasons.

  • Other athletes have said they`re gay after they`ve left pro-sports, but Collins is the first one to do that as an active players.

  • Here`s some of what he wrote in the magazine article where he made his announcement:

  • "I didn`t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in the major American team sport. Since I am, I`m happy to start the conversation.

  • I wish I wasn`t the kid in the classroom raising his hand and saying, I`m different. If I had my way, someone else would have already done this.

  • Nobody has, which is why I`m raising my hand.

  • One of Collins` former teammates was asked about yesterday`s announcement.

  • KEYON DOOLING, MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES: For Jason now, you know he felt it was the right time, the right place, the right situation, he felt comfortable enough in his skin.

  • At the end of the day, man, I did a lot of work in the community with him, he`s a great guy in the community, he`s a great team mate, a great locker room guy, and so at the end of the day, his sexual orientation doesn`t matter to me.

  • UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As the guy who`s been interested in player development, on Twitter, it seems like most players are very supportive, very encouraging. So are you not surprised that ?

  • DOOLING: No, man, I mean - man, we - this is a brotherhood, you know,

  • this is a small fraternity of NBA ball players, and we all go through different challenges, we all come from different backgrounds,

  • different settings, different countries, different religions, different races, et cetera.

  • You know, and this is just another testament to David Stern and the work that he`s done in NBA, because we are brotherhood,

  • and at the end of the day if one of our brothers goes through something, we want to be there to support him.

  • UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How ready do you think the NBA and NBA players for this - such a matter in a locker room situation?

  • DOOLING: Yeah, well, I`m not sure. You know what I mean? I think there`s always going to be ignorance in every platform,

  • I think there`s always going to be you know, some reservations, you know, because, you know, for whatever stigma comes along with that.

  • AZUZ: What`s your take on this?

  • We got a new blog post at cnnstudentnews.com, it`s where you can show your thoughts on Jason Collins and his announcement.

  • UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today`s "Shoutout" goes out to Mr. Green`s class at Mojave High School in North Last Vegas, Nevada.

  • Who wrote the I, Robot collection of short stories?

  • You know what to do? Was it Isaac Asimov, Edgar Allan Poe, Ray Bradbury or Will Smith?

  • You`ve got three seconds, go.

  • Isaac Asimov`s "I, Robot" stories have had a big influence on science fiction since they were first published in 1950.

  • That`s your answer and that`s your shoutout.

  • AZUZ: Asimov was known for combining science fact with science fiction.

  • The robots in this mechanical melee are the real deal. This is the FIRST robotics competition.

  • FIRST, meaning For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.

  • More than 10,000 students from around the world came to St. Louis Missouri to show off their engineering abilities.

  • They had to design robots to perform certain tasks, like shooting frisbees and do a goal, or placing rings on a rack.

  • One of these youth winners talked about what it takes.

  • SAGAR RAJENDRAN, 2013 FIRST CHAMPION: A lot of hours of, you know, just dedication to our team,

  • you know, we had a teacher strike at a - in our region, and we have to build the robot out of student`s basement.

  • And just think that we came this far is just - is just amazing, it`s just - I`m just ecstatic from this experience.

  • AZUZ: In the future, some of those student engineers could work on the kind of potentially life changing technology you`re about to see.

  • Nick Glass wants to check it out.

  • NICK GLASS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So, this is your bionic arm.

  • MICHAEL MCLOUGHLIN, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY APPLIED PHYSICS LABORATORY: Yes. (inaudible) modular prosthetic limb or MPL.

  • This is the most sophisticated arm in the world, it can do virtually everything that your natural limb can do.

  • GLASS: That`s quite a claim.

  • MCLOUGHLIN: Yes, it is. This arm has 26 individual joints that we can control.

  • GLASS: Has there ever been an arm quite like it?

  • MCLOUGHLIN: Never. So this arm is intended to work with your brain just like your natural arm works.

  • GLASS (voice over): The bionic arm weighs much the same as a normal one:

  • about nine pounds and it can mimic pretty much anything a normal hand can do, has almost the same dexterity,

  • 26 joints, 100 sensors, as we`ve been told, also 17 motors and the tiny computer built into the palm of the hand.

  • The effect is almost musical.

  • It was time to have a go myself to slip on a special glove with sensors linked up to the bionic arm.

  • (on camera): How like my real arm and hand is this?

  • MCLOUGHLIN: It can do virtually anything that you can do with your natural hand.

  • Now, you can move - yeah, you can move your wrists, right, it`s very fluid.

  • GLASS: My goodness! I could wave like the queen!

  • MCLOUGHLIN: That`s right.

  • You can think about things like you`re playing the piano eventually, or doing very complex types of things.

  • GLASS: You`re imagining someone with bionic arms playing the piano?

  • MCLOUGHLIN: I think we`ll get there some day. We are not there yet, but we`ll get there.

  • GLASS: You feel privileged?

  • JOHNNY MATHENY, PATIENT: Oh, yes very privileged to be able to do this, to show, you know, any upper amputee person, you know, want to be able to do.

  • It`s just going to be what`s come in your way, has not going to be in a way to future, a future`s coming now.

  • AZUZ: You want to see your favorite teacher mentioned on CNN STUDENT NEWS?

  • You`d better get moving!

  • Teacher Appreciation Week is next week.

  • The deadline to send us your teacher appreciation I-reports is this Friday.

  • Get all the details by checking out the link in the resources box of our home page.

  • And teachers, we want you to visit that box, too. It`s where you`ll find the link to share your thoughts on today`s show.

  • Finally today, an illuminating story out of L.A.

  • See that orange glow in the background of this video?

  • That`s not a light show or a special affects display.

  • It`s a tower of lava. That`s hot.

  • This is Mount Etna, the highest active volcano in Europe.

  • The active is right, this is the volcano`s 13th eruption this year.

  • Experts say it won`t cause any problems for local towns or residence,

  • but it might be kind of difficult to ignore, especially for our viewers there.

  • If you`re talking to someone when the local mountain just burst in the fire, it might be a viable interruption.

  • Think you could ignore Etna?

  • That lavely story is going to flow right into us saying goodbye. Have a great day.

  • END

CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS.

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April 30, 2013 - CNN Student News with subtitles

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