Defending Our “Shore”

You’re not going to believe this, and I really don’t believe it myself, but I’m going to defend those yo-yos on “Jersey Shore” – well sort of.

Just this week, I read that the “stars” of Jersey Shore are heading to the shores of Italy to start filming their next season.  Well, the Italians are not too keen about the idea – and the octet hasn’t even arrived yet.

According to columnist Roberto Del Bove of the Roman newspaper, New Notzie, “they embody the worst stereotypes of Italians, multiplied by thousands and Americanized.”

Corriere della Sera was a little kinder when it described them as a group with “slicked hair, exaggerated narcissism, boundless love for the family and outlandish eccentricity.”

What got me reeling, however, was a reported note from an unidentified “commenter on an MTV Italia website” who said, “When I see this, I wonder whether Osama Bin Laden had a point.”

I have no idea what was going on in this “commenter’s” mind, but, really, does the antics of eight young people create such delirium in one’s head that they would think terrorists who fly planes into our buildings and kill thousands of our people had a point?

Let me say I’ve never seen an episode of “Jersey Shore,” but I’ve seen enough clips and blurbs about the show and the comings and goings of Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, the Situation, and the rest of them to know that it’s something I don’t want to waste my time watching.  But that’s why they invented the remote control.  I don’t have to watch it.

It actually disturbs me that people like this get million dollar book deals – although I’m not sure how many viewers of the show can actually read – or get to dance on Dancing with the Stars, or have the opportunity to start their own dress line, or speak at Rutgers University.  The fact that they have millions of followers on Twitter is a mystery to me.  I’m clueless as to why anyone would want to know what these eight goofballs do all day.   If I were to channel my late 90+ year old friend, Anne, she’d say, these useless twits are “using up our air.”

I’ve known lots of very talented people, great singers, writers, screenwriters and actors, who’ve never caught a break but that’s just the way it is.  Some people are lucky.  Some people are in the right place at the right time.  These eight numbnuts made it – at least for the next fifteen minutes.

But that’s the beauty of America – the land of opportunity.  No where else in the world could a 4’9” troll-like creature named “Snooki” who uses inordinate amounts of hairspray and tanning spray become a millionaire doing absolutely nothing.

So, when I read that Osama Bin Laden may have had a point when he set in motion his henchmen to carry out the greatest tragedy to hit our country, I get a little ticked off.  Am I being over-sensitive?  Yeah, sue me.  But it was my country that was hit on 9/11 and, after almost ten years, the wound is not completely healed.  Our country did not deserve it, those who lost their lives didn’t deserve it, and the surviving families who lost their loved ones did not deserve it.

It bothers me that stupid shows with ridiculous characters fill our airwaves at this point but, like I said, no one is forced to watch.  But I’ll be damned if I’m going to sit back and think that the existence of these shows justified 9/11.  Bin Laden and his crew hate our freedom and the opportunities we have in this country.  And it’s precisely that freedom and the opportunities America provides that allows the “Snookis” in this country to rise to national (and perhaps international) fame – whether we like it or not.

So, to the person who made the comment that perhaps Osama Bin Laden may have had a point, my husband would say, “you don’t have to say everything you think.”

For me, I’ll end by saying, “Io non lo capisco, ma se tu lo capisci, che Dio ti benedica.

Author Bio:

For over twenty years, Leona has tried to heed her husband’s advice, “you don’t have to say everything you think.” She’s failed miserably. Licensed to practice law in California and Washington, she works exclusively in the area of child abuse and neglect. She considers herself a news junkie and writes about people and events on her website, “I Don’t Get It,” which she describes as the “musings of an almost 60-year old conservative woman on political, social and cultural life in America.” It’s not her intention to offend anyone who “gets it.” She just doesn’t. Originally from Brooklyn, and later Los Angeles, she now lives with her husband, Michael, on a beautiful island in the Pacific Northwest, which she describes as a bastion of liberalism.
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  • JDO

    That was awfully insensitive of you, Leona. “4’9″ troll-like creature …?” I would say “Oompa Loompa-like” is more accurate.

  • Roger Ward

    Leona, of course you’re right about the no-talent, empty-headed inhabitants of the “Jersey Shore” …. but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t endorse the opportunities this country provides and then criticize people, however untalented, for taking advantage of those opportunities. The real villains here are the producers of the show.

    And another thing: what’s with this “Only In America” self-criticism? There are plenty of morons in the rest of the world and there seems to be no shortage of opprotunity in their own countries to exhibit their stupidity. (Remember the Russian TV show where women read the news of the day while stripping off their clothes?)

    • JDO

      “The real villains here are the producers of the show?” I disagree. The real “villains” are the people that watch the show, purchase the packaged DVDs of it, purchase any merchandise hawked by the “stars” and keep it going. If no one watched, these eight bozos (bozos & bozettes?) would’ve been given the “ax” long ago. Yeah, the producers/creators of The Jersey Shore brought it to tv, but no one is being forced to watch it. Tons of tv shows (some that are actually decent) die a quick death all of the time. No audience, no ratings, no mas. I blame the audience.

      • Roger Ward

        Sounds like a chicken v egg story to me. Are the producers at fault for making what the public will watch? …. or is the public at fault for providing an audience for the producers’ drivel? I’ll stay with my original perspective. Of course, viewers are always ultimately responsible for what they take in ….but that still does not excuse the producers, who have a profit motive in providing crap to the public.

  • Robert

    Well I know it’s said there’s different strokes for different folks but Jersey Shore is definitely not entertainment. To parallel the sinister stratagem of Bin-Laden to the genius who cooked up the latest crock of reality tv bat guano is something which is offensive. Just as it is for Ann Coulter to say a number of the women made widows on 9/11 were looking at what to blow their compensation payouts for their spouses’ deaths on. But 9/ 11 aside, and it is unfit to merit mention with Jersey Shore–though Snooki has probably only prompted a number of guys to souse themselves to get her out of their mind to no avail–America’s culture had started down the wrong track well before the tragedy that marks ten years come September 11. It’s essentially acceptable porn. While the Supreme Court made Linda Lovelace and Harry Reems to be akin to Soviet dissidents of once upon a time, they never sought to be seen as acceptable to minors; Jersey Shore, on the other hand,attempts to make some narcissistic, egotistical knuckleheads thinking that they merit fame for absolutely nothing. After all if Paris Hilton or Kim Kardashian can generate sizzle simply by being attractive and capable of respiration (and probably little else) there is more than enough room for the denizens of the Jersey Shore on the wasteland of tv.

  • http://happyharry Harold Jaffe

    Only in America

  • Ron

    Why does anyone report or care about what an “unidentified `commenter on an MTV Italia website'” thinks? And I don’t know if someone saying Osama Bin Laden may have had it right about American culure means that the person agrees with the action that followed. We criticize American culture on a daily basis but it does not mean that we believe an attack on Ameiica is justified.

  • TomSr

    All this over a post from a loonie? Worse things are said on Huffington Post on a daily basis.

  • Bruce A.

    Good one Leona. Only in todays Ameaica can a no talent group of overactive $luts & pigs make a fortune.
    So much for hard work.