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Her 11th Birthday Was The First Time She Said She Didn't Want To Live. She Left On His 21st.

People are afraid to talk about it, much less learn about it. So afraid, in fact, that if I used the word in this intro, fewer of you would even watch it. But if you and I don't take the time to understand, to see the humanity in each and every one of us, who will? Hear his story. Talk about it. And help make sure there's a brighter future for other kids like him.

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For some people, every day is Independence Day. For Janis Shinwari, this will be his first 4th of July as an American citizen. And boy, he earned it.

"If I was in Afghanistan—if I didn't come here, I wouldn't be alive now. I would be dead." Shinwari told CNN Heroes in 2018. Shinwari risked his life for nine years serving as a translator for U.S. forces in his native country of Afghanistan. He risked his life everyday knowing that should he be caught by the Taliban, the consequences would be severe. "If the Taliban catch you, they will torture you in front of your kids and families and make a film of you." Shinwari said. "Then [they'll] send it to other translators as a warning message to stop working with the American forces."

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