During our recent tour of Aotearoa (New Zealand) with KUMU HINA, we had the privilege of spending time with Georgina Beyer and Annie Goldson (pictured below).
Georgina, the charismatic star of Annieʻs powerful 2002 documentary GEORGIE GIRL, is the world’s first openly transgender person to be elected to public office. Of Maori descent, Georgina is an example of a courageous individual who overcame adversity, marginalization and discrimination to become a positive force for change and an enduring symbol of hope and inspiration to people around the world.
Georgina is currently suffering from end-stage chronic renal failure and Annie has created an online campaign to help cover the exorbitant costs of her medical treatment.
Please see Annieʻs letter below to learn more about the campaign and an opportunity to see the film.
We hope youʻll join us in supporting and spreading the word about this effort.
Thank you for your attention and consideration,
Joe Wilson & Dean Hamer
KUMU HINA Producers/Directors
Thanks so much to those of you who have donated to the Save Georgina Fund. As many of you will know, Georgina Beyer, the first transgender person to be elected into national office in the world, has renal failure and is having dialysis four times a day as she waits on the list for a kidney transplant.
We have made it over the $3,000 mark with another $1,000 from a fundraising screening we had along with Documentary Edge in Wellington. We’re still going: and for another month yet you can still stream GEORGIE GIRL free (or preferably in exchange for a donation).
To access the Save Georgina Fund: open www.op.co.nz, click on Give and follow the instructions ..
There is some relatively good news for Georgina and those facing renal disease. The Government is putting more money into the kidney donation process that could see more people accessing this life-saving operation.
In the meantime, by chance I met Hawaii based filmmakers Joe Wilson and Dean Hamer at the Wairoa Maori Film Festival. They were showing KUMU HINA, their documentary about a native Hawaiian transgender woman. The film follows Hina, who is an inspiring teacher working at an indigenous school in Hawaii. The film also traces her rocky relationship with her relatively traditional Tongan husband.
By chance Joe and Dean were showing KUMU HINA in Wellington immediately before GEORGIE GIRL showed at DocEdge. A remarkable coincidence that the only two films in the world about politically influential Polynesian transgender women were showing in the same location on the same night!
What struck me upon watching these films back-to-back, was how these two transgender women, in their different ways, have gone through really difficult life paths, struggled against all sorts of odds, to reach a place where they could contribute to their respective societies in very powerful and important ways.
There is a generosity about them we don’t seen much. My understanding is that prior to Christianity being introduced, transgender males and females occupied significant and respected places within Polynesian culture and by hook or by crook, Georgina and Hina managed to find their way back. All power to them, as this has not be easy path for either of them.
Please circulate this amongst your lists …. and help Georgina Beyer continue to be an inspiration to us all.
Professor Annie Goldson
Anthony Mackie, in an interview with Interview Magazine
The rest of the interview focuses more on Mackie’s role as Tupac Shakur in the upcoming Notorious, but his comments on Jesse Owens are spot-on. You can learn more about Owens and why he’s so important at the website run by the Jesse Owens Trust.