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Pit bull documentary goes “Beyond the Myth”

The roots of “Beyond the Myth,” an independent documentary about the plight of pit bulls, go back to when Libby Sherrill was a student in graduate school at the University of Tennessee.

What was her senior project is now a nearly-finished product — a documentary that looks at pit bulls and the people who love and defend them.

The film explores the factors behind the public’s fear of pit bulls and examines the conflict existing between advocates and opponents of breed specific legislation. It also investigates the myths associated with the breed and asks the question, “What exactly is a pit bull”?

To see a trailer, click here.

Sherrill left an eight-year career with HGTV to write, direct and produce her self-financed film debut, and is now hoping to enter “Beyond the Myth” in film festivals.

“Beyond the Myth” challenges the idea that pit bulls are inherently vicious and goes one-on-one with people on both sides of this controversial issue, according to the documentary’s website.

A pit bull owners herself, Sherrill is against breed specific legislation, such as that passed in Ohio, Denver and numerous other jurisdictions.

“Opponents of BSL believe that such laws are a demeaning overreaction perpetuated by media bias and claim that dog bite statistics (showing pit bulls are responsible for the majority of fatal dog attacks) are unreliable sources of information regarding the ‘viciousness’ of a breed. They argue that BSL is unenforceable and ineffective, and that it fails to reduce the occurrence of dog attacks because it fails to address the root cause — people.

“Instead of focusing on and punishing owners who are irresponsible and criminals who use their dogs for illegal purposes, legislatures choose to place their focus on the dogs, making them into scapegoats. Many opponents believe BSL is the equivalent of racial profiling and banning a breed is, quite possibly, unconstitutional.

Through the documentary’s website, Sherrill is raising funds to help offset its cost of the documentary, fund a public opinion survey about public perceptions of pit bulls and how the media contributes to them, and establish a legal defense fund for people trying to keep their dogs in jurisdictions that have banned them.


Comment from Maureen McNeill
Time June 5, 2011 at 12:44 pm

Can I buy this DVD? My daughter rescued a pit bull who was the sweetest dog ever (since deceased)?

Comment from elissa Mac Gregor
Time July 16, 2013 at 8:33 pm

Hi. Im out here in ca. Doing all i can as 1 person who rescued the most amazing, lovable, pit bull in the world! I have changed a few minds out here…but the ones i am most proud of are a few cops out here that have come into contact with us, and actually told me my dog changed their minds!

Comment from kimberly racolta
Time January 15, 2016 at 11:56 pm

The pit bulls are very misunderstood. Proud pit mom. They are loyal, loving, smart, people pleasing dogs. You can’t breed aggresive dogs just like you can’t breed smart people. The beautiful animals go through hell to be made mean. They are innocent. A gun doesn’t walk into a bar a kill 15 people, there is a evil human holding the gun just like pit bulls don’t go around attaching people there is a human behind that dog making him do it. Why do we keep blamning the dog. Punish the evil humans that beat, burn,shock,starve and do so much more to these dogs .