Difficult to watch yet impossible to dismiss, the documentary “Welcome to Chechnya” (9 p.m., HBO, TV-MA) will stun viewers and leave them wondering just how the film was made. “Welcome” does not merely document and explore the official harassment and murder of gay people in the Russian region, but follows two activists as they smuggle victims to safety.
Smuggled phone footage shows gay men being brutalized and harassed by police, and other phone messages describe tactics of blackmail and intimidation. The film opens with a harrowing call from a woman whose uncle has discovered her lesbianism. He insists that she submit to his sexual demands or he will tell on her to his brother, her father, an official in the Chechnyan government who will certainly have her murdered rather than live with the “shame” of a gay daughter.
Director David France (“How to Survive A Plague”) uses a number of innovative techniques, from a battery of hidden cameras to digital effects, to protect the identities of participants still subject to government-sponsored terrorism.
Indigenous women on reservations in the United States and Canada are 10 times more likely to be murdered than women elsewhere. This film documents the establishment of an all-woman boxing gym established in Canada’s Blackfeet Nation. There, women get to bond and tell stories, use the punching bag as a “therapist” and relate tales of harassment and fear. The film also offers a view of life on a reservation, dispelling many media and movie stereotypes.
Fear of contagion has changed the way many people shop and don’t shop, altering the retail economy overnight. Purchasing goods online seems safer and easier. But all of those Amazon orders have to be fulfilled by somebody.
The crisis has also shed light on the vulnerability of people who do essential jobs like producing and selling food. These same people are often making minimum wage and are without health benefits. Some are subject to deportation, and all of the harassment and hypocrisy that our immigration system offers.
A consistent cheerleader for Wall Street as a barometer of our society, CNBC rarely covers the conditions faced by workers. Sometimes it takes a crisis to take “essential” workers seriously.
TV-themed DVDs available today include “Miss Fisher & the Crypt of Tears,” the feature-length installment of the stylish Acorn period mystery.
Jack Black, Owen Wilson and Steve Martin play competitive bird watchers in the 2011 comedy “The Big Year” (8 p.m., MoMax).
Teamwork on “DC’s Stargirl” (7 p.m., CW, TV-PG) ... Defending feminism on “black-ish” (8 p.m., ABC, r, TV-PG)
Waco Links Fellowship meets at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at Uncle Dan’s BBQ, 1001 Lake Air Drive.
Special guest is Art Stricklin, of Dallas, longtime Texas golf writer, author, and travel expert.
All golfers and supporters are invited to this devotional meeting and are reminded to wear masks and practice social distancing.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Central Texas Food Bank will distribute free food to help those in McLennan and Bell Counties who are facing increased food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The distribution takes place from 10 a.m. until noon Thursday at Waco ISD Stadium, 1401 S. New Road. A distribution for Bell County residents is Saturday, July 18 at Temple College, 2600 S. First St. in Temple.
At these special drive-through food distributions, attendees will receive one box of assorted produce, 1-2 gallons of milk and one protein box weighing between 8-20 pounds containing chicken or pork products.
The food bank needs volunteers to assist with these events. Anyone interested in volunteering should visitcentraltexasfoodbank.org, and click on “Volunteer” to sign up. Volunteers proficient in Spanish are also needed for client intake. To sign up for this role, email email@example.com.
The Dr Pepper Museum hosts its July First Friday event July 3, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at 300 S. Fifth St.
The gift shop and soda fountain are open late.
City of Waco offices will be closed on Friday, in observance of Independence Day.
Cobbs Recycling Center and the landfill will be open during normal business hours on Friday but will be closed on Saturday.
Friday’s trash will be picked up early on Wednesday.
The Waco-McLennan County Library system will close all branches on Friday and will reopen on Monday, July 6.
Waco Transit offices will also be closed on Friday. Waco Transit buses will run as scheduled on Friday, but will only run Medicaid trips.
The Cameron Park Zoo, the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum, and the Waco Mammoth National Park will be open on Saturday.