The State Versus Robert Citadel

Contributor: Jerry Guarino

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“So Mr. Citadel, you don’t deny that you have committed these violations?” The tall, grey haired man wiped sweat from his brow, stuttered and replied. “No, your honor, I don’t.” The judge nodded solemnly. “Then you may step down. I am ready to pronounce my verdict.” The accused stood up next to his attorney nervously.

“For twenty years of incessant public radio fundraising, for the unmitigated gall of suggesting that people donate their vehicles to save money on gasoline, for your interruption of the most important news events, for calling any program other than ‘car talk’ entertainment, for implying that saving a mosquito is more important than providing food and housing to 3rd world people, for giving equal time to the noble and the inane, for wasting the time of countless thousands on a daily basis, for offering worthless goods as rewards for donations, for thinking that diversity is the same as equality, for pretending to be the friend of the people while courting the wealthy, for more coverage about Michael Jackson’s death than his life, for paying any attention to the Kardashians, Tiger Wood’s extramarital affairs, offensive, gangster rap lyrics and Howard Stern, for giving Sarah Palin as much air time as President Obama, for dedicating 30 minutes of prime air time to business news that is as irrelevant as drips from a water faucet, and last, but most egregious, for insisting that public radio is not commercial radio when every other minute you speak about programs being supported by, funded by, brought to you by and underwritten by of all entities, corporate giant oil companies and financial services companies who caused 99% of our country to suffer countless indignities and the ability to provide for their family, I find you guilty of representing the public broadcasting space and sentence you to work at Tom and Ray’s garage cleaning up oil spills and putting them into environmentally safe disposal sites until such time that Wall Street restores the American economy, New Yorkers have justice for 9/11, teachers and nurses earn what they are worth and the drug cartels are wiped clean from the face of the Earth.

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Jerry Guarino’s short stories have been published by dozens of literary magazines in the United States, Canada, Australia and Great Britain. His first collection of twenty-six critically acclaimed stories, Cafe Stories, was released in October, 2011. It is available as a paperback on and as an e-book on kindle.
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