I have written about 2 stories featured om This American Life, one of my favorite public radio programs. It reaches more than 2 million people each week and its host is Ira Glass and produced by WEBZ public radio. It was the built on the simple power of storytelling and is able to look at several stories linked a them each week. The two stories that gripped my attention were about Adrian Schoolcraft, a former New York City police officer who exposed corruption within the ranks. A conspiracy caused by the use of technology to keep track of crime in our cities. The New York police were downgrading crimes to make it appear crime was less serious than it really was.
On Sunday I found a story about a school board in the New York City area that was taken over several years ago by a growing population of Hassidic Jews who did not attend the schools and were concerned that their property taxes had grown too high over the years. It was a gripping story, called A Not So Simple Majority. It combined elements of crime, democracy and seeking justice. I believe that in the end children’s education suffered and the social contact between communities was broken.
I would not have wanted to live in the shoes of Adrian Schoolcraft or the people in New York State whose schools are being slowly eroded by divisive tactics. This is my American life.