Piece Comment

Review of Legal Status

Here's another excellent piece from the "Radio Rookies" in New York City. Veralyn, a native of Sierra Leone, has lived in the U.S. almost her entire life. And that's the hitch. She wasn't born here. Her parents never got around to filling out the proper paperwork to make her official in the eyes of the government. "I've lived in American nearly all my life but it feels like I don't exist," she says. So Veralyn, a feisty teen, begins questioning the adults in her life. Her Dad admits to being "really laid back" when it comes to helping her secure citizenship. Her uncle yells at her about exploring the topic on the radio: "You could get yourself deported. Do you understand that September 11 has changed the rules of the game?" Her siblings, all born in the U.S., shrug their shoulders. What's the big deal? Get the green card, they say. A programmer looking to put a personal face on the country's immigration debate should strongly consider airing this story. At just over 10 minutes long, it eats up a lot of airtime, but listeners love well-told personal stories and this is one of them.