Jeremy Stulberg is the producer and editor of Growing Up Coy, a feature-length documentary about a young Colorado family who engages in a highly publicized legal battle and landmark civil rights case, as they fight for their 6-year-old transgender daughter’s right to use the girls’ bathroom at her elementary school. The film asks a universal question that any parent could face: “How far would you go to fight for your child’s equal rights?”
I had the privilege of watching this film as part of my coverage of #DFF39 and then sitting down with Jeremy to talk about what I believe to be the next great civil rights frontier, as well as this film’s role in bringing awareness to that movement. One of the things that’s most striking about this film is the viewer’s growing understanding of how transgendered people – whether they’re six years-old or 60 – just want to live their lives to their utmost potential happiness, comfort, and acceptance.
The Mathis family, who agreed to allow this documentary to invade their lives as they embarked upon a ceaseless media blitz, come across as beautiful people willing to sacrifice damn near anything to advocate for their daughter. And that’s really what transgender rights comes down to. People want to be treated according to the way they are, not the way society believes they should be. Being transgendered seems challenging enough as is. Why are we as a society seeking to make life even harder?
I don’t have an answer, but in Ep. 114 of the podcast, we talk about it at length. Jeremy has produced a tremendous film about an issue I happen to care very much about. If you’re an LGBTQ advocate – listen to this show. If you’ve never considered transgender issues in your life – listen to this show. If you’re just a fan of documentary filmmaking – listen to this show. There’s something here for everyone.