Even if you never listen to podcasts, you need to listen to this one. This American Life did a two part special on Harper High School in Chicago. In 2012, twenty-nine recent and current Harper students were shot.
People talk a big game when it comes to violence and guns, with vague language and cherry-picked statistics. This effort walks miles above all that, with a street level view of what it's like to live in the crosshairs of a gun every day, just because you're a kid in Chicago.
The principal and staff at Harper are heroes you will not soon forget.
A detail: when interviewers asked kids what was the most popular firearm, the collective response was "thirty," a reference to the high capacity magazines. These kids are terrible with guns. Hence, their only real chance of hitting their target is a numbers game. Call it the spray technique.
Do whatever you need to do. Download the podcasts and burn them onto discs and play them in the car during your commute if you don't have an iPod. Just listen. You will not find a better example of longform radio journalism than this.
This is your America. Open your eyes and take a good long look. After all, you own this.
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