Bill Chappell

Bill Chappell is a blogger and producer who works with NPR's Morning Edition and Digital Media group. In addition to coordinating Web features, he frequently contributes to NPR's blogs, from The Two Way and All Tech Considered to The Salt.

Chappell's work at NPR has ranged from being the site's first full-time homepage editor to leading the London 2012 Olympics blog, The Torch. His assignments have included being the lead web producer for NPR's trip to Asia's Grand Trunk Road, as well as establishing the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps on NPR.org.

In 2009, Chappell was a key editorial member of the small team that redesigned NPR's web site. One year later, the site won its first Peabody Award, along with the National Press Foundation's Excellence in Online Journalism award.

At NPR, Chappell trains both digital and radio staff to use digital tools to tell compelling stories, in addition to "evangelizing" — promoting more collaboration between departments. Other shows he has worked with include All Things Considered, Fresh Air, and Talk of the Nation.

Prior to joining NPR in late 2003, Chappell worked on the Assignment Desk at CNN International, handling coverage in areas from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America, and coordinating CNN's pool coverage out of Qatar.

Chappell's work for CNN also included producing Web stories and editing digital video for SI.com, as well as editing and producing stories for CNN.com's features division. He also worked at the network's video and research library.

Before joining CNN, Chappell wrote about movies, restaurants and music for alternative weeklies, in addition to his first job: editing the police blotter.

From 2002-2003, Chappell served as editor-in-chief of The Trans-Atlantic Journal, a business and lifestyle monthly geared for expatriate Europeans working and living in the United States.

A holder of bachelor's degrees in English and History from the University of Georgia, he attended graduate school for English Literature at the University of South Carolina.

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Running
2:09 pm
Sun September 28, 2014

Kenya's Kimetto Sets New Marathon World Record In Berlin

Kenya's Dennis Kimetto crosses the finish line to win the Berlin Marathon Sunday. Kimetto set a new world marathon record, breaking the 2 hour, 3 minute mark for the first time.
Tobias Schwarz AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 3:00 pm

For the first time, the world record in the marathon is now under 2 hours and 3 minutes, after Dennis Kimetto of Kenya tore through the course at Sunday's Berlin Marathon. Kimetto, 30, says he wants to set a new record next year.

"I feel good because I won a very tough race," Kimetto said after the finish. "I felt good from the start and in the last few miles I felt I could do it and break the record. I believe I can improve it further. I'd like to return and try to break it again next year."

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The Two-Way
10:46 am
Sun September 28, 2014

Turkey Signals Willingness To Join Coalition Against ISIS

Turkish military forces of the Jandarma (police) block access at the Mursitpinar crossing gate near the Syrian border, where Syrian Kurdish people seek to pass, on Sunday. Turkey's leader says the country is willing to fight ISIS.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 2:55 pm

Saying his country will do "whatever is needed" to help fight the extremist group ISIS, Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he has reached what local media are calling "a point of determination."

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The Two-Way
9:36 am
Sun September 28, 2014

Hong Kong Police Use Tear Gas On Large Pro-Democracy Protest

Riot police launch tear gas into a crowd of thousands of protesters outside the government headquarters in Hong Kong Sunday. Police warned of further measures as they tried to clear the streets.
Wally Santana AP

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 11:50 pm

Police in riot gear have been deployed to the streets of Hong Kong, where thousands of protesters are calling for free elections. Police used tear gas and pepper spray to try to clear the city's central business and government district. Organized by student groups, the Occupy Central protests have now been going on for three days.

Update at 12:45 p.m. ET: Organizers Urge A Retreat

Saying that the chance for severe injuries is too great, Occupy Central's organizers ask supporters to retreat from stand-offs with police.

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The Two-Way
8:25 am
Sun September 28, 2014

More Than 30 Feared Dead In Japanese Volcano's Eruption

A hiker is lifted by a rescue helicopter at Mt. Ontake, which erupted Saturday. The volcano straddles the Nagano and Gifu prefectures in central Japan.
Kyodo Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 2:51 pm

The sudden and powerful eruption of a volcano Saturday may have killed more than 30 hikers in central Japan, according to authorities who have made their way up the side of Mt. Ontake. Officials say the hikers were found close to the mountain's peak, in cardiac and respiratory arrest.

As the AP reports, "The victims have been described as not breathing and their hearts have stopped, which is the customary way for Japanese authorities to describe a body until police doctors can examine it."

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The Two-Way
2:38 pm
Sat September 27, 2014

Ohio's James Traficant Dies, Days After Accident On Farm

Former Rep. James Traficant, seen here arriving at a House ethics hearing in 2002, has died at age 73.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 28, 2014 2:02 pm

Former Rep. James Traficant, the Ohio politician whose career included 17 years in Congress and a conviction for bribery, has died at age 73. Traficant's family had been fearing for his life since earlier this week, when he was critically injured in a tractor accident.

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The Two-Way
1:39 pm
Sat September 27, 2014

U.S. Leads More Airstrikes Against ISIS In Iraq And Syria

Two Royal Air Force Tornado GR4 fighter jets prepare to take off Saturday from an airbase in Cyprus. The British warplanes were heading on their first mission over Iraq since being given parliamentary authority to strike at ISIS Friday.
- AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 27, 2014 1:57 pm

U.S. fighters and drone aircraft continue to strike targets tied to the so-called Islamic State group, with at least 10 missions carried out in Iraq and Syria since Friday. Some of the strikes hit around Kobani, a town close to Turkey's border with Syria that's been under siege.

Kobani is in an area where tens of thousands of Kurdish people have fled Syria in the past week, seeking safety in Turkey.

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The Two-Way
11:27 am
Sat September 27, 2014

More Chicago Flights Canceled; Suspect Was Told Of Hawaii Transfer

Travelers lined up Friday to reschedule flights at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport after the region's air traffic control was sabotaged. More flights are resuming Saturday, but hundreds were also canceled.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 27, 2014 5:06 pm

The number of canceled flights in and out of Chicago crept toward 800 Saturday afternoon, as workers tried to restore one of the nation's busiest air traffic control systems. The system was crippled Friday, officials say, after a disgruntled employee set a fire in a federal radar center. (We updated the number of cancellations at 5 p.m. ET).

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The Two-Way
9:49 am
Sat September 27, 2014

Hiker Catches Volcano's Eruption On Video, And Is Overtaken By Ash

A hiker's dramatic video captured the scene as a huge cloud of ash poured down the side of Mt. Ontake in Japan Saturday.
YouTube

Originally published on Tue September 30, 2014 11:16 am

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The Two-Way
8:20 am
Sat September 27, 2014

Catalonia Defies Spain As Leader Signs Decree For Breakaway Vote

President of Catalonia's regional government Artur Mas acknowledges cheers Saturday after signing a law setting a Nov. 9 vote on independence. At left is the president of the Catalan Parliament, Nuria de Gispert.
Lluis Gene AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 27, 2014 12:49 pm

One week after the Catalan parliament gave him the power to do so, Catalonia's leader is calling for a vote in the northeast region of Spain on whether it should become independent. The vote is set for November 9, but Spain's central government has said it won't let the vote occur.

Catalonia has already launched a website for the independence vote, referring to it with the shorthand 9N. The website includes a sample ballot that asks two questions: Should Catalonia be a state, and should that state be independent?

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Incarceration
5:38 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Crime Falls As U.S. Locks Up Fewer People, Attorney General Holder Says

In the past year, the U.S. prison population fell by roughly 4,800, the first time in decades the number has gone down, according to the Justice Department. Attorney General Eric Holder discussed the findings in New York on Tuesday.
Julio Cortez AP

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 6:20 pm

The U.S. is seeing "historic" progress in reducing both its crime and its incarceration rates, Attorney General Eric Holder said, with the federal prison population falling by some 4,800 inmates in the past year — "the first decrease we've seen in many ‎decades."

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The Two-Way
1:38 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Obama Calls For More Ambitious Approach To Climate Change In U.N. Speech

President Obama speaks at the U.N. Climate Summit on Tuesday. Discussing America's past, Obama told the group, "We recognize our role in creating this problem."
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 4:29 pm

In a speech at the U.N. Climate Summit, President Obama called for a more ambitious global approach to environmental issues, and noted a new push to boost what the White House calls "global resilience" in the face of climate change.

We embedded video of the president's speech here and posted updates below.

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The Two-Way
12:29 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

Stoutaccino? Starbucks Tests Coffee With Beer Flavors

In some parts of the U.S., Starbucks is testing a latte flavored with roasted-stout notes along with its seasonal autumn drinks such as the Pumpkin Spice Latte, seen here at front.
Starbucks

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 1:26 pm

Reports that Starbucks is testing a new coffee drink for autumn that incorporates "toasty stout flavors" has set off a debate over how such a concoction might taste — and questions over where customers can find one. The Dark Barrel Latte was "inspired by the rise of craft beers," the company says.

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The Two-Way
10:00 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Israel Kills Palestinians Suspected In June Kidnappings

Palestinian onlookers and civil defense members gather at a site where an Israeli military operation left two Palestinians dead in the West Bank town of Hebron on Tuesday. Troops killed two Palestinian suspects in the June murder of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank.
Hazem Bader AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 4:40 pm

Ending a months-long search, the Israeli military says it has killed two Palestinian men with ties to Hamas who it believes were responsible for kidnapping and killing three Israeli teenagers early this summer. The abductions preceded nearly two months of violence between Israel and Hamas.

Acting on recently received information, soldiers from Israel's special forces raided a building in the West Bank where the men had been hiding early this morning.

From Jerusalem, NPR's Emily Harris reports:

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The Two-Way
4:53 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Thousands Of Refugees Flee Syria In Chaotic Scene At Turkey's Border

A Syrian family waits near the Turkish-Syrian border after entering Turkey near the town of Sanliurfa Sunday. An estimated 70,000 Syrian Kurds have fled the extremist group the Islamic State this weekend.
Ulas Yunus Tosun EPA /LANDOV

An estimated 70,000 Syrian refugees have fled the violence brought by extremist group ISIS this weekend, choosing to cross into Turkey carrying whatever belongings they can manage.

The rush of predominantly Kurdish refugees came as fighters loyal to ISIS seized dozens of villages in the area. While a U.N. agency reported about 70,000 refugees this weekend, a Turkish official says 100,000 Syrians have come to Turkey for shelter in the past week.

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The Two-Way
3:12 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Man Caught At White House Is An Army Veteran

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 5:10 pm

Omar J. Gonzales, the 42-year-old man who the Secret Service says ran onto the White House grounds and entered a door Friday night, is an Army veteran who served in Iraq and was reportedly a sniper.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

For Oktoberfest-Goers In Munich, A Parade And A Party

People wearing traditional Bavarian clothes take a break after the Oktoberfest parade in Munich Sunday. Millions of beer drinkers from around the world will visit the Bavarian capital over the next two weeks for the festival.
Michael Dalder Reuters /Landov

Munich kicked off this year's Oktoberfest Saturday, beginning festivities in which the city expects to host 6 million visitors. Today's events included a parade celebrating Bavarian culture – and of course, the rampant consumption of beer, served in a traditional one-liter Mass mug.

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The Two-Way
11:25 am
Sun September 21, 2014

One Year After Kenyan Mall Attack, Few Answers Have Emerged

Survivors and relatives of victims carry Kenya's national flags on the anniversary of last year's deadly attack on the Westgate shopping mall in Kenya's capital of Nairobi.
Thomas Mukoya Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 5:07 pm

Kenyans are marking the first anniversary of a deadly attack on an upscale shopping mall in Nairobi that sparked a siege and created new uncertainty over the reach of extremist violence in Africa. The attackers were identified as Islamist militants from Somalia, but few other details about the incident have emerged.

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Climate March
8:46 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Large Protests In Hundreds Of Cities Vent Ire Over Climate Change

Demonstrators gather near Columbus Circle before the start of the People's Climate March in New York Sunday. Organizers are hoping 100,000 people worldwide might participate in the rally.
Craig Ruttle AP

Originally published on Mon September 22, 2014 8:07 am

Streets in New York City and other towns were taken over by marchers Sunday in what organizers called the largest climate change protest in history. The People's Climate March was timed to draw the notice of world leaders gathering for this week's U.N. Climate Summit.

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The Two-Way
1:45 pm
Sat September 20, 2014

Ravens Fans Line Up To Trade In Ray Rice Jerseys At Stadium

Baltimore Ravens fans exchange the jersey of the team's former running back Ray Rice at M&T Bank Stadium Friday. "He should have been the man here and backed away" instead of hitting his fiancee, a female fan says.
Patrick Smith Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 2:19 pm

Fans of the Baltimore Ravens, which earlier this month cut star running back Ray Rice over a domestic violence scandal, are lining up today to exchange jerseys featuring the player's name. It reportedly took more than an hour to get through the line around the Ravens' M&T Bank Stadium.

This is the second day of the trade-in, just one of the recent developments in a scandal that started taking shape back in February, when Rice hit his then-fiancee, Janay Palmer, in an elevator at a casino resort in Atlantic City.

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The Two-Way
11:53 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Calif. School District Will Get Rid Of Controversial Armored Vehicle

The San Diego School District is sending back a military vehicle it had planned to use in rescue operations. The district had released renderings of what the MRAP might look like after its tan military color is repainted. This version shows it as a police vehicle.
San Diego Unified School District

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 2:17 pm

Yielding to residents' concerns, the San Diego Unified School District says it's returning the 18-ton MRAP, or mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle, that its police department recently acquired from the Department of Defense's surplus equipment program.

San Diego officials had said the MRAP would be used only as a rescue vehicle in extreme circumstances — but that didn't satisfy the plan's critics, particularly in a summer marked by controversy over police using military-grade equipment to face off with demonstrators in Ferguson, Mo.

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The Two-Way
10:51 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Pope Names A Moderate To Be Chicago's New Archbishop

Bishop Blase Cupich will replace Cardinal Francis George as the new archbishop of Chicago. He's seen here in 2011, presenting a Church study on clergy sex abuse.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 2:11 pm

One of America's largest Catholic dioceses is getting a new leader, as Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Blase Cupich of Spokane, Wash., to be the next archbishop of Chicago. Cupich will replace Cardinal Francis George, 77, a conservative who has spoken out on many social issues in his 17 years in the post.

Update at 10: 40 a.m. ET: Cardinal George Introduces Cupich

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The Two-Way
9:16 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Man Who Jumped Fence, Entered White House Had A Knife

A Secret Service police officer stands near an entrance to the White House complex during an evacuation, minutes after President Barack Obama departed Washington for Camp David aboard Marine One. A man scaled a fence and reached the residence last night.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 11:05 pm

Update at 10:20 p.m. ET:

The man who managed to climb the White House fence and open the door to the executive mansion Friday night was armed with a knife, the U.S. Attorney's office said.

The Secret Service had originally reported that the man was unarmed.

Update at 7:42 p.m. ET:

The Secret Service has stepped up security at the White House after an intruder managed to enter a door on the residence, the agency said in a statement Saturday, one day after the breach in security.

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The Two-Way
8:30 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Dozens Of Turkish Hostages Freed, As ISIS Advances In Syria

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, center, poses with dozens of freed Turkish hostages at the Esenboga Airport in Ankara Saturday. The group was held by militants in northern Iraq for more than three months.
Adem Altan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 2:14 pm

After more than 100 days in captivity, nearly 50 Turkish people are now free from the extremist group ISIS. The group includes diplomats and children, along with security personnel who were seized in June along with Turkey's consulate in Mosul.

As it celebrates the 49 hostages' return, Turkey is also receiving an influx of thousands of Kurdish people who are fleeing parts of Syria where ISIS has taken dozens of towns in recent days.

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Space Flight
6:03 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Boeing And SpaceX Win $6.8 Billion In NASA Contracts

In an image provided by NASA, astronaut Randy Bresnik prepares to enter Boeing's CST-100 spacecraft for an evaluation at the company's Houston Product Support Center. NASA awarded Boeing with a $4.2 billion contract Tuesday.
AP

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 7:29 pm

NASA has chosen Boeing and SpaceX to build the vehicles that will transport its astronauts to the International Space Station, putting the two American companies on a course to take over a job that NASA has recently relied upon Russia to perform: carrying out manned space flights.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden says vehicles from the two companies are expected to be ready for service by 2017.

Announcing its decision Tuesday, the space agency included these details:

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The Two-Way
4:21 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Obama Gives New Details On America's Effort To Fight Ebola

President Obama spoke Tuesday about the U.S. plan to fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, speaking at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The White House plan reportedly includes deploying 3,000 U.S. military personnel and training health care providers in Liberia.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 5:51 pm

President Obama announced details of his plan Tuesday to help contain the Ebola outbreak that has caused more than 2,400 deaths in West Africa. The strategy reportedly includes sending up to 3,000 military personnel to the region.

Obama spoke at the Atlanta headquarters of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday afternoon.

Update at 4:18 p.m. ET: 'It Doesn't Have To Be This Way'

The president describes "a major increase in our response." Some details:

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The Two-Way
3:37 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Belgium Agrees To Euthanize Man Convicted Of Murder, Rape

Inmate Frank Van Den Bleeken, seen here in court last autumn, says he wants to die because he sees no progress in the mental problems that were linked to his crimes of murder and rape.
Herman Ricour AP

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 4:14 pm

In a country whose laws don't allow for the death penalty, the case of a Belgian man who sees himself as a threat to society — and wants to die — is putting new focus on Belgium's health care and justice system, as well as its laws allowing euthanasia.

After an appeals court in Brussels approved a deal allowing inmate Frank Van Den Bleeken to die from an assisted suicide, the country's justice minister cleared the way for his transfer to a hospital late Monday.

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The Two-Way
2:02 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Odile Leaves Wreckage In Mexico And Threatens Flooding In U.S.

Cars sit in a flooded street in San Jose del Cabo Monday, after Hurricane Odile knocked down trees and power lines in Mexico's Baja California peninsula.
Ronaldo Schemidt AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 7:48 pm

Hurricane Odile is now a tropical storm, but it's still bringing heavy rainfall and power outages to the Baja Peninsula and surrounding areas. And a second storm could threaten the western coast of Mexico and the U.S. later this week.

Odile is still carrying sustained winds of more than 50 mph — and projecting tropical storm winds up to 150 miles from its center, according to the National Hurricane Center, which expects the storm to weaken into a tropical depression by early Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
11:18 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Marriott's New Envelope For Room Tips Stirs Debate

Marriott is putting envelopes like this one in thousands of rooms at its hotels, hoping to boost the number of guests who tip the housekeeping staff.
Marriott

Originally published on Tue September 16, 2014 3:07 pm

A new program to encourage guests to tip the housekeeping staff at Marriott hotels is meant to make it easier for people to show their gratitude to workers. But the plan, part of an initiative from Maria Shriver's group A Woman's Nation, is raising questions over how the company pays its staff — and whether guests should be expected to tip.

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The Two-Way
3:46 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Minnesota Vikings Reinstate Peterson, Who Says He's Not A Child Abuser

Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, seen here at a practice in late May, has been reinstated after he was benched over alleged child abuse.
Andy Clayton-King AP

Originally published on Wed September 17, 2014 3:27 am

Days after he was arrested and benched over charges that he abused his 4-year-old son by punishing him with a wooden switch, NFL star running back Adrian Peterson has been reinstated. The Minnesota Vikings announced the move Monday, as Peterson released a statement defending himself.

Peterson did not go into detail about his actions. Instead, he said, "I want everyone to understand how sorry I feel about the hurt I have brought to my child."

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The Two-Way
3:36 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Cameron And The Queen Speak Out On Scotland's Independence Vote

People gather in London's Trafalgar Square on Monday for a rally urging Scotland to stay with the U.K. Polls are showing that the "yes" and "no" camps are neck and neck.
Andrew Cowie EPA/Landov

With voter opinion polls showing single-digit margins over the call for Scotland to break away from the U.K., two of England's most visible leaders — Prime Minister David Cameron and Queen Elizabeth II — are speaking about the issue. Today, Cameron told Scots not to vote out of frustration, saying, "If you don't like me, I won't be here forever."

Cameron spoke one day after a rally for Scottish independence, and a day after the queen briefly addressed an issue on which she has been publicly silent. Voters in Scotland will decide the issue on Thursday, Sept. 18.

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