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Let ‘Em Play – A New Documentary on Paralympians

Image shows young woman with short blonde hair leaping in the air with a determined look on her face. Palm trees are in the background. In large letters the words Let ‘Em Play are in the bottom half of the image and displayed in such a way that the woman appears to be leaping between the words. In smaller type: “A film by Scott Marshutz” is above the title.

Today on The Pulse, I had a chance to speak to the director of a new documentary called Let “Em Play. The documentary follows four young athletes with disabilities as they attempt to secure a spot on the US Paralympic team.  

The director Scott Marchutz said this was his first time working with paralympians.  

He remarked that watching the level of play made his jaw hit the floor. It’s a common misperception that persists about the Paralympics and about athletes with disabilities—that the games are somehow less rigorous. Nothing could be further from the truth. 

Many of us within the disability community look to paralympians as leaders and as trail-blazers. We don’t really sit with this idea that at one point these athletes were young, inexperienced and struggling to make their way in an ableist world with very few resources and supports. 

The journey of paralympians- how they get to the finish line as it were is never easy. It’s a story that can and should inspire us. But it should also motivate us, even if we aren’t athletically inclined ourselves, to fight for a world where everyone (regardless of ability) has the right to play.