MTV's Jersey Shore- Anti Italian Ad CallingItalians Guidos and a Species  

MTV's Jersey Shore is labeled as entertainment. We consider it Anti-Italian, as do many other Italian American organizations. The facts are simple: any show about any other ethnicity labelling them as "negros", "beaners", "micks", etc. would never have been allowed to air. But, Italians are the media's old reliable.  We've written about how the media has been allowed to showcase Italians as buffooons ( Joey Tribbiani of Friends, Joey Russo of Blossom), gangsters (The Sopranos, A Shark's Tale) , generally violent ( Tony Monero of Saturday Night Fever), and womanizing (all of the aforementioned depicitions and then some). We've covered this heavily in our blog, especially in our Jersey Shore and My Big Friggin Wedding discussions.

This Anti-Italian slant in the media then manifested into Anti-Italian reality programming. Shows like Growing Up Gotti began, in our estimation, a new stereotype for Italians: Mafia and Guido idolatry. Growing Up Gotti thought nothing of showing the Gotti family trying to act in manner consistent with John Gotti- a known head of a Mafia crime family. Many of the episodes even ended with Victoria Gotti talking and looking at her father's picture above her mantleplace.

After Growing Up Gotti was allowed to run rampant on the airwaves, the media went a step further and plainly labeled Italians as Guidos in MTV's Jersey Shore. Guido has long been a derogatory term to Italians in general. It is demeaning and offensive. However, once MTV was informed that this label should not be used, MTV issued the statements that "The show isn't for everyobody" and that "The cast is proud of their ethnicity." At no point did MTV apologize for its use of the word to describe Italian Americans. Imagine a world where MTV came out with an all African American cast and labelled the cast as "crazy negros." Can you now imagine that show staying on the air without some type of repercussions for the network? Didn't think so.

What we have here is a prgression of how far the media is willing to go to defame Italians. If Italians fail to act now the media will progress to the point where it makes it acceptable to call Italians Guineas. Still think this isn't serious? Look at the Jersey Shore Season 2 Casting call from MTV. Apparently all the hooplah meant nothing:

 

Anti Italian, MTV's Jersey Shore casting call