Action Speaks looks at contemporary issues through the lens of history by using under-appreciated twentieth-century dates that changed America. The Action Speaks series pairs documentary films with community discussion. This year's theme takes a look at patterns of consumption - media, technology, food - under the heading "What's Eating Us?"
WSBE Rhode Island PBS presents four documentaries (actually, we have six related documentaries scheduled) on Sunday nights at 9 PM (re-broadcast at 1:30 AM on Tuesdays). Then on the following Wednesday nights, Marc Levitt hosts a forum at AS220 (115 Empire Street in Providence) on the selected dates and events in history. Discussions include guest panelists, and the audience is invited to participate in old-fashioned, face-to-face community conversation and exchange of ideas.
October 3 at 9 PM - SEEING RED: A JOURNEY THROUGH THE MORAL DIVIDE
After the presidential election of 2004, the media announced that America was morally divided like never before, split between red and blue, between the faithful and the faithless. Bewildered and disappointed by the Democrat's loss, one Rhode Islander gathered a few friends and journeyed into red state America to meet the Evangelical Christians who supposedly single-handedly handed Bush his victory.
October 3 at 10 PM - GOOD FOOD
Something remarkable has been happening in the fields and orchards of the Pacific Northwest: Small family farmers are making a comeback. They're growing much healthier food, and lots more food per acre, while using less energy and water than factory farms.
October 10 at 9 PM - P.O.V. FOOD, INC.Wednesday, October 6 at 5:30 PM (at AS220) 1926 Father Coughlin “On the Air”: The Birth of Right-Wing Radio Father Charles Coughlin was the first nationally-known conservative radio talk show host. He addressed large rallies and established a national network of listeners. Panelists ask how his methods, ideologies, and reach compare to those of today’s "right-wing" talk hosts.
Food, Inc. lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that's been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of E. coli — the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults. Food, Inc. reveals surprising — and often shocking truths — about what we eat, how it's produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here.
October 17 at 9 PM - FRONTLINE: GROWING UP ONLINEWednesday, October 13 at 5:30 PM (at AS220) 1971 Alice Waters Opens Chez Panisse Farmers’ Markets and Community Gardens are in many ways the children of Alice Waters and her restaurant, Chez Panisse. This panel looks at the economic, cultural, political, and public and private health implications of the local food movement.
In Growing Up Online, FRONTLINE takes viewers inside the very public private worlds that kids are creating online, raising important questions about how the Internet is transforming childhood. As more and more kids grow up online, parents are finding themselves on the outside looking in. At school, teachers are trying to figure out how to reach a generation that no longer reads books or newspapers.
October 24 at 9 PM - INDEPENDENT LENS: GARBAGE DREAMSWednesday, October 20 at 5:30 PM (at AS220) 1973 The First U.S. Mobile Phone Call Everyone has an opinion about the role of cellular phones and mobile media technology in society. Panelists will approach this topic from ethical, philosophical, political, and community activist points of view.
On the outskirts of Cairo, residents of the world's largest garbage village collect 4,000 tons of trash per day, recycling nearly all of it. But when multinational waste collection corporations threaten the community's survival, three teenage boys born into the trash trade are forced to make difficult choices about their futures.
October 24 at 10 PM - PASSION FOR SUSTAINABILITY
The story describes how 14 Portland, Oregon, business leaders are applying "green" principles to address environmental concerns.
Wednesday, October 20 at 5:30 PM (at AS220) 1987 The Roaming Mobro Trash Barge In 1987, a barge filled with New York City garbage was dragged up and down the East Coast and into Mexican and Caribbean waters. Panelists relate this event to issues of consumption, disposal, and reuse.