Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Why I Won’t be Watching ‘Princesses: Long Island’

June 20, 2013 6:39 am 3 comments

The cast of Princesses: Long Island. Photo: WIkimedia commons.

I’m proud to represent an area of Long Island that has been the location for many famous movies and TV shows, including Citizen KaneAnnie Hall, and the hit television series Boardwalk Empire. It’s even the setting for The Great Gatsby. Shamefully, it’s also now the location for a show whose characters are disgraceful, misleading, and fuel anti-Semitic stereotypes: Princesses: Long Island.

Full disclosure: I kind of enjoy reality TV. Storage Wars and Pawn Stars are among my guilty pleasures. So the idea of watching a reality show taking place in my own backyard wasn’t so far-fetched. I knew little about the show before sitting down to watch the season premiere.

Much to my dismay, the characters on the show spewed gross generalizations about the living and dating habits of unmarried Jewish women. And the stereotyping didn’t stop there. In the latest episode, the characters get together for a Shabbat dinner, an important tradition in the Jewish faith and culture. As a Jew, I can say with confidence that this dinner was exactly the opposite of what the sacred Sabbath dinner is supposed to be. But for those watching unfamiliar with the holy meaning of the Jewish Sabbath, it is shown in the worst way possible, with excessive drinking and fighting.

The characters do not shy away from any Jewish stereotypes and portray both Jews and Long Islanders in the most unflattering light possible. Yes, I know this is reality TV, but it’s still unacceptable.

Jews have spent thousands of years trying to dispel stereotypes. We’ve been repeatedly persecuted by groups that hate based on falsities and gross generalizations. I’ve worked my whole life to combat this type of hatred. And I’m the product of grandparents who came to this country to escape the Pogroms of Russia and the hatred they faced simply because of their religion.

Therefore, I will not silently tolerate a show that paints Jewish women on Long Island with all-too-familiar and painful stereotypes — money-hungry, superficial, Jewish-American Princesses. The characters on the show are welcome to live their lives however they may choose, but I don’t want viewers of the show to think that they are, in any way, representative of Jews or Long Islanders.

I, for one, will not be spending my Sunday night watching Princesses: Long Island. Viewers should know that the show portrays the lives of the characters and is in no way representative of a religion, culture or geographic area. I hope that others will join me in deciding that this show is not the type of TV we should be supporting.

3 Comments

  • Andy Cohen should be ashamed of himself. I live in Los Angeles and thought the “Shahs of Sunset” was pretty pathetic, however, this even outdoes that. What Andy Cohen gonna do next, put white people on in black face? This kind of schlock fuels anti semitism and reinforces the JAP sterotype. These girls are sad, late 30’s living at home and looking for their parents to take care of them. If I was their father, I’d throw them out of the house and tell them to grow up.
    These girls are “icky” – they think they can come up with some lame idea and tomorrow they will wake up and be Betheny Frankel – Good Luck. Their parnets are just as bad, they are “enablers”. Now I know why Elvis shot TV sets…

  • Mr Writer: I will BE watching that show due to your review.
    I DEFINITELY WANT TO SEE THIS ACCURATE PORTRAYAL OF OUR
    ‘jewish woman’.I SAID ACCURATE.
    According to your review,YES !!! thats my people in sections of the island, but then there are BETTER communities, more observant communties that are not like that.This advertisment you wrote makes me want to go in the same business.How much did the producers pay you?
    You stated:
    ‘…the characters on the show spewed gross generalizations about the living and dating habits of unmarried Jewish women.’ YOU ERRED, YOU SHOULD HAVE SAID ,
    …AND married woman cheating….

    YOU STATED:
    ‘In the latest episode’
    I GUESS YOU BEEN WATCHING HUH?

    YOU STATED:
    ‘Jews have spent thousands of years trying to dispel stereotypes.
    I DONT KNOW HOW YOU CAN VERIFY THAT EXCEPT WHEN THOSE VERY SAME JEWS ASSIMILATED TO BE THE PERFECT GERMANS IN THE 1800s.
    EVEN IN EGYPT WE JEWS KEPT OUR ”JEWISH” NAMES.

    Mr Writer if you care so much you should NOT HAVE WRITTEN ABOUT THIS BECAUSE I *WILL WATCH IT NOW*
    but mostly because if you are tuned into our TORAH AS YOU HINT then you know the remedy is LEARN TORAH…
    SO WE ‘WILL’ BE THE LIGHT. TO BE THE LIGHT, WE HAVE TO LEARN TORAH AND SHINE IN THE WAY THAT G-D WILL BE PROUD.
    …AND WE WILL BE THE REPRESENTITIVES OF HASHEM….
    YOU SAID THAT DIDNT YOU? OHHHHyou didnt? tsk tsk tsk
    so all you did was write a sensation article with no meaningful message to go along with your condemnation….
    TSK TSK TSK….

    I WONDER WHAT schmuely boteach WOULD SAY….

    I wouldve read elders of zion if you had written a review on that….

  • The show about JAPs sounds terrible – but, unfortunately, just bad enough to tempt me to watch! I’m Jewish and was brought up in a home and in a social milieu that was 180 opposite of this Long Island “experience;” so, in a very substantive way, it’s alien territory – terra incognita! – to ME! Ironically, my late Gentile (Methodist-turned-Episcopalian) husband grew up as almost a minority in the heart of this very milieu (the so-called “Five Towns” area); but even he might have found this new show a bit much!!

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Book Reviews Opinion The Syrian Virgin (BOOK REVIEW)

    The Syrian Virgin (BOOK REVIEW)

    The Syrian Virgin, by Zack Love. CreateSpace, 2015. The Syrian Virgin, by Zack Love, is a very interesting novel. Equally a political and romantic thriller, at times a real page-turner, it gets you intimately involved in the dire situation in today’s Syria, as well as in the romantic entanglements of its mostly New York-based characters — whose entanglements just might determine the fate of that dire situation in Syria. Along the way it introduces a really important idea that somehow […]

    Read more →
  • Features Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    Unpacking the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and Its Ripple Effect on Israel’s Region

    JNS.org – Aside from Israel itself, those with a vested interest in the Jewish state are accustomed to tracking developments related to Middle East players such as Iran, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. But much global attention has recently focused on the Caucasus region at the Europe-Asia border, specifically on the suddenly intensified violence between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the mountainous Nagorno-Karabakh area of western Azerbaijan. The Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, while not taking place in Israel’s immediate neighborhood, does have what one scholar called […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Features Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    Earth Day 2016: Israel Shines in Water Technology, Recycling, Renewable Energy

    JNS.org – On Friday, April 22, 196 nations across the world mark Earth Day, the annual day dedicated to environmental protection that was enacted in 1970. Not to be forgotten on this day is Israel, which is known as the “start-up nation” for its disproportionate amount of technological innovation, including in the area of protecting the environment. For Earth Day 2016, JNS.org presents a sampling of the Jewish state’s internal achievements and global contributions in the environmental realm. Water conservation Israeli […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture World New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    New Documentary Explores Holocaust Humor, Role That Laughter Played in Death Camps

    Holocaust humor and the role that laughter played in the lives of Jews during World War II are the focus of a documentary that made its world premiere on Monday at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. In The Last Laugh, first- and second-generation survivors, as well as famous Jewish and non-Jewish comedians, discuss their thoughts on when joking about the death camps is appropriate or taboo. “Nazi humor, that’s OK. Holocaust humor, no,” Jewish comedic giant, actor and filmmaker Mel Brooks says in the film. “Anything I […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    Tragedy Culminates in ‘Celebration,’ Says Israeli Author Who Lost Son to Terror

    JNS.org – Sherri Mandell’s life was devastated on May 8, 2001, when her 13-year-old son Koby was murdered by terrorists on the outskirts of the Israeli Jewish community of Tekoa. Yet Mandell not only shares the story of her loss, but also celebrates the lessons she has learned from tragedy. Indeed, “celebrate” is this Israeli-American author’s word choice. Her second book, The Road to Resilience: From Chaos to Celebration (Toby Press), came out earlier this year. The lesson: in every celebration, there is […]

    Read more →
  • Features Opinion For Alan Gross, Cuban Prison Didn’t Harden His Heart or Weaken His Ambition

    For Alan Gross, Cuban Prison Didn’t Harden His Heart or Weaken His Ambition

    JNS.org – Alan Gross used to be nothing more to me than a tragic headline. When I started my position at this news service in July 2011, Gross had been imprisoned in Cuba since December 2009 for what that country called “crimes against the state.” Gross, a subcontractor for the United States Agency for International Development, went to Cuba to help the Jewish community there access the Internet. After his arrest, he received a trial he describes as a “B movie,” […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Features New Movie Shows How Global Economic Instability Grew From Very Local Greed

    New Movie Shows How Global Economic Instability Grew From Very Local Greed

    JNS.org – When I saw the recent Academy Award-winning film “The Big Short,” I was struck by the sheer genius of the financiers who devised the schemes and packaged the loans for resale, but it left me with unanswered questions about how the properties these loans represented were moved. “The Big Short” was largely about paper transactions, big money, and wealthy investors, and it mildly touched on the way the actual end-users — the home buyers and brokers — played into this […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Book Reviews Psychiatry and the Spirit

    Psychiatry and the Spirit

    Why do we think so negatively about psychiatrists that we still insult them by calling them shrinks? Some medics might be quacks, but we don’t generally refer to them as witches! Shrinks; The Untold Story of Psychiatry, by Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, is a sobering account of how psychiatry has swung from a marginal, unscientific mixture of weird theories into one of the most common and pervasive forms of treatment of what are commonly called “disorders of the mind.” Is it […]

    Read more →