Identity Crisis

In Lauderhill, a teenager pays for his Haitian parents' mistakes while struggling, like many of his friends, to find his place in the United States

Outside their little brown house, the sky has turned black, and in his room Joseph is still in bed, readjusting pillows and thumbing through old letters under the glow of a single red candle. A siren wails in the distance as he considers his evening options. No caller has offered to rescue him from his doldrums -- no one beckoning him to work, no friends calling him to hang out. GED classes are still an option, but not much of one. Then he remembers: Yesterday his friends had talked of going to the mall, of catching the new Jerry Springer movie at the multiplex. "Springer is the bomb," he says. "I can go to class tomorrow."

Contact Jay Cheshes at his e-mail address:
Jay_Cheshes@newtimesbpb.com

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