HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA/AP) – Gov. Tom Corbett and other Pennsylvania politicians have signed a statement calling on the Discovery Channel to drop “Amish Mafia.”
The statement says “Amish Mafia” is a “bigoted portrayal” of the religious sect and misrepresents the Amish in Lancaster County as a “crime-ridden culture.”
The statement was signed by 18 elected officials, including congressmen, state senators, state representatives and Lancaster’s mayor. Pennsylvania’s two U.S. senators signed a similar statement denouncing the show.
The campaign against “Amish Mafia” is being organized by a Lancaster-based group called Respect Amish.
The show purports to follow a group of Amish men who enforce law and order within the community. Questions have persisted about its veracity.
Discovery spokeswoman Laurie Goldberg declined comment on the letter. She has said the characters on the show are, in fact, real-life Amish.
Back in 2012, West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin also asked that MTV not air its show “Buckwild,” which was considered an Appalachian version of its highly successful reality show “Jersey Shore.”
However, MTV continued with the show despite Manchin’s protests.
Only a few months later MTV pulled the plug on the show — about a week after one of its stars, Shain Gandee, died of carbon monoxide poisoning.
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(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)