A Long Island congressman has joined the growing chorus of critics speaking out against Bravo’s new reality show, Princesses: Long Island, because he believes it fuels anti-Semitic stereotypes.
“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,” Rep. Steve Israel (D-Dix Hills), who is Jewish, wrote in an op-ed published by the Huffington Post.
The lawmaker’s critique comes after Freeport residents were outraged that one of the women on the show called their village a “ghetto.”
Israel said that he will not continue to watch the show, the fourth episode of which airs 9 p.m. Sunday on Bravo.
The congressman was particularly upset by the show’s portrayal of the traditional Shabbat dinner, writing that it gives viewers who are unfamiliar with the significance of the Sabbath the wrong idea because it was exactly the opposite of what this sacred dinner is supposed to be.
In a recent episode, the dinner included excessive drinking and a feud between “princesses” Casey Cohen and Erica Gimbel which “princess” Chanel Omari called a “Shabbocalpyse”. Erica made the offensive statement at the table, “Shabbat, Shalom, go %^&* yourself.”
Israel wrote: “The characters do not shy away from any Jewish stereotypes and portray both Jews and Long Islanders in the most unflattering light possible.”
Jewish stereotypes in the previous episodes included the women fighting over who should sit at the corner of the table while citing a Jewish saying that those who sit at the corner aren’t getting married.
According to Israel, “the characters on the show spewed gross generalizations about the living and dating habits of unmarried Jewish women.”
Bravo responded to the congressman in a statement, saying: “Princesses: Long Island is a show about six women who are young, educated, single and Jewish living in Long Island, and is not meant to represent all Jewish women or other residents of Long Island.”
Israel urged viewers to vote with their remote controls and boycott the show.
“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.” he wrote. “I hope that others will join me in deciding that this show is not the type of TV we should be supporting.”