On Common Ground

On Common Ground is a 15-part series designed for use in English as a Second Language classrooms. It offers a basic course in American government and civics and the rights and responsibilities of being an American citizen. Dramatic stories illustrate the many facets of controversial issues, emphasizing that many situations do not have a single right answer, and each program ends with a relevant incident from American history.
For workbooks or more information, call 1-518-474-5906.

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1. Domino Effect

City Hall comes under siege when an unemployed worker blames the government for his legal and financial troubles and decides to take revenge.

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2. Like Taking Candy from a Baby

Law enforcement and city government personnel attempt to infiltrate a telemarketing boiler room scam that preys on elderly immigrants.

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3. For the Greater Good

The city is polarized by a proposed highway project that threatens homes in the Latino section.

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4. Between a Rock and a Hard Place

When compliance with federal law threatens financial disaster, the city government comes into direct conflict with the disabled community and with the judicial branch of the federal government.

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5. Collision Course I

An avowed anti-immigrant extremist plans to speak at a rally, forcing the city to grapple with difficult freedom of speech issues.

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6. Collision Course II

A law firm headed by two immigrants is divided over representing someone who espouses extreme anti-immigrant sentiments.

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7. A Delicate Balance

An investigative reporter has information that could convict a rapist—but only if the reporter divulges the source of the information.

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8. Rules of the Game

Following the drug-related death of a high school student, law enforcement officials take questionable measures in seeking justice.

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9. Sticks and Stones I

An immigrant businessman who has been physically assaulted by a member of an influential family seeks justice.

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10. Sticks and Stones II

When a young man from a wealthy family goes on trial for assault, the truth emerges from an unlikely source.

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11. A House Divided

The race for a city council seat causes deep divisions, especially among black residents of the district.

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12. Fall from Grace I

Flagrant abuses in an inner-city apartment building lead to charges of corruption in City Hall.

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13. Fall from Grace II

As facts about the deplorable conditions in an inner-city apartment building become public, citizens organize in opposition to the city council member who owns the property.

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14. Skin Deep

Community tensions run high when an immigrant's controversial small business ignites the anger of neighboring business owners.

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15. Hidden Agenda

The city is embroiled in a civil rights controversy involving City Hall workers, and a TV news anchor fights her own civil rights battle.

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