America at a Crossroads
About This Collection
After the historic 2016 election, America finds itself at a crossroads. People across the nation worry about major changes that have taken place or are being proposed, and there’s deeply-felt, sometimes harsh debate about how to move forward on health care, immigration, taxes, foreign affairs and more.
Through a year-long theme called “America at a Crossroads,” WORLD Channel will curate stories that examine the issues we are all facing today. July kicks off the theme with an examination of a key health crisis: the opioid addiction epidemic that has left its mark on people and communities in rural and urban America, from working class and middle America to the rich and famous, from coast to coast.
Future months will see examinations of elder care and its enormous toll on families, suicide and mental health among millennials, the impact of immigration on local economies, and the struggle for young people to transition from high school to work.
Episodes In This Collection
Focusing on what is known as "The Newark Riots," Revolution '67 reveals how a spontaneous revolt against poverty and police brutality ended as a fateful milestone in urban America's struggles over race and economic justice. The film also provides a historical framework to contextualize recent events in Ferguson, MO and Baltimore, MD.
An American Mosque
A timely documentary about religious freedom and the struggle against intolerance set in a rural California town. Sparked by the destruction of a mosque, witness how a community responds to hate through painful but positive discussions about the perception of Islam in America and our responsibility to defend everyone’s constitutional right to worship.
Independent Lens: Dogtown Redemption
A surprising number of people make their living off our nation’s vast rivers of trash. Dogtown Redemption follows the lives of three people over the course of seven years: a recycling hustler, a former minister and the daughter of a prominent family. Each survives by redeeming recyclables in "Dogtown," an area of West Oakland, California.
Chasing the Dream: A PBS NewsHour Weekend Special
There were no bigger issues fueling the 2016 election than jobs and the increasing number of Americans who feel that a recovering economy simply passed them by. From the rural towns of Eastern Kentucky to the heart of Silicon Valley, stories of struggles and solutions — and new light on the growing economic divide felt by millions of Americans.
Against All Odds: The Fight for a Black Middle Class
Probes the harsh and often brutal discrimination that has made it extremely difficult for African-Americans to establish a middle-class standard of living. Through dramatic historical footage and deeply moving personal interviews, Against All Odds explores the often frustrated efforts of black families to pursue the American dream.
Language creates barriers and opportunities for refugees and immigrants in Tennessee, from a mobile ESL classroom, to Spanish-language newspapers, to “English Only” laws.
Set among the hills and hollers of Appalachia, Oceana, WV looks like a rural paradise. But this community is under siege: a raging epidemic of prescription drug abuse is so deadly that residents have nicknamed the town “OXYANA.” A close-up look at people who live from one pill to the next, and a harrowing vision of today’s AnyTown, USA.
Hooked Rx: From Prescription to Addiction
An investigative project into the destructive epidemic of prescription opioid addiction. For months, journalism students from Arizona State University crisscrossed the state to produce a multimedia investigation into Arizona’s - and the country’s - dependence on prescription pain medication and the toll addiction takes on families and patients.
Beyond the Mirage: The Future of Water in the West
Explore the West's water crisis, including how the region arrived at this point. Examining emerging water conservation technologies and how they might offer solutions to this global issue, the documentary puts viewers at the center of this issue and prompts a candid discussion about water resources and the need for viable, sustainable solutions.
Independent Lens: Welcome to Leith
Chronicling the attempted takeover of a small North Dakota town by notorious white supremacist Craig Cobb. As his behavior becomes more threatening, residents desperately look for ways to expel their unwanted neighbor. Welcome to Leith is an unsettling exploration of what happens to democratic principles when they’re pushed to the limit.
Independent Lens: Rich Hill
Follow three teenage boys, Andrew, Harley, and Appachey, as they struggle with isolation, broken families, and lack of opportunity in their Missouri town, where the idea of the American Dream may remain elusively out of reach, but the desire for a better tomorrow remains.
POV: The Overnighters
Thousands flock to a North Dakota town where the oil business is booming. What they find are slim work prospects and a housing shortage. Pastor Jay Reinke converts his church into a makeshift dorm, allowing men to stay despite objections and fears. When opposition reaches a boiling point, he makes a decision with shattering consequences.
We Are Superman: The Transformation of 31st and Troost
The story of the American urban core in a time when racism has gone underground, prejudice is glossed over and progress is built on the backs of the poor. We Are Superman is an emotional testament to a select few who are working tirelessly in the heart of Kansas City; working to transform a dividing line into a gathering place.
Set for Life
The Great Recession decimated the economy, putting millions of Americans out of work. Follow three Baby Boomers — a steelworker, a community college staffer and an IT project manager — struggling to recover. They suffer financial woes, self-doubt and health problems while job hunting, and coping with their rapidly eroding American Dream.
Voices from Atlantic City
In 1976, Atlantic City legalized casinos but by 2014, four of the twelve closed, costing nearly 8,000 jobs. Today, the the political and economic future of the casinos, the people and the city hang precariously in the balance. This is the story of the rise and fall through the unique perspectives of local stakeholders who still manage to have hope.
Learning to Swallow
The portrait of Patsy Desmond, an "it girl” who seemingly had it all yet struggled with bipolar disorder; a failed suicide attempt leaves her unable to swallow. Learning to Swallow captures Patsy’s raw honesty and wit even as she becomes increasingly frail. However, hope and an undying spirit prevail, renewing Patsy's pact with art and life.
A Daring Journey: From Immigration to Education
Detailing the challenges and risks four individuals are willing to take as they cross the border from Mexico to the United States in search of the "American Dream." A Daring Journey documents their many struggles to earn a living in the shadows of our immigration system, as they all seek higher education for themselves and their children.
Out in the Silence
When Joe Wilson announces he is to wed a man, a firestorm of controversy ignites in his hometown. Drawn by a plea for help from the mother of a gay teen being bullied at school, Wilson’s journey illustrates the possible transformation of those who have been constrained by a traditional code of silence to summon the courage to break it.