UNICO National President Andre’ DiMino thanked and congratulated Point Pleasant elected officials for “taking a stand” against MTV’s ethnic-bashing series “Jersey Shore” by approving a resolution condemning Viacom and MTV for intentional misrepresentations of the Jersey Shore and Italian Americans.
The resolution “urges these corporate citizens to cease and desist from utilizing ethnic stereotypes to achieve monetary gains.”
“On behalf of UNICO members across the country, and the many Italian Americans, non-Italian Americans and New Jersey citizens supporting our opposition to this disgraceful series and all it portrays and represents, I express our thanks and congratulations,” DiMino wrote. “It is very gratifying to see that there are progressive and forthright elected officials who will stand up for what is right and respond to the concerns of constituents and neighbors.”
“As National President of UNICO, I will be pleased to advise everyone that you were the first government entity to respond to our Call to Action to take a stand against bias in all forms,” DiMino said. “I applaud your leadership and concern.”
In particular, DiMino thanked Councilmembers Susan Rogers, Toni DePaola and Bill Dikun. Rogers and DePaola, both UNICO members, helped champion the measure and participated in UNICO’s anti-bias summit earlier this month at Seaside Heights.
DiMino noted that Councilmen Christopher Leitner and Jack McHugh objected to the resolution — Leitner, an attorney, abstained, while McHugh voted against it. (A third member, Mitch Remig, cited a conflict of interest and abstained.)
“It’s amazing that they lack the courage and moral fiber to support a non-binding resolution against bias,” DiMino said. “Their actions are reprehensible and represent a slap in the face to, not only Italian Americans, but anyone who has experienced stereotyping, ethnic-bashing and discrimination. They should be embarrassed and held accountable by the electorate for their actions.”
DiMino has made more than 39 major media appearances in leading UNICO National’s crusade against “Jersey Shore.” The campaign has resulted in Domino’s Pizza, T-Mobile, Dell, Palm and Zappos withdrawing advertising.
UNICO’s Call to Action, by its Anti-Bias Committee, embodies the following:
First, becoming part of an anti-bias coalition such as The Italian American One Voice Coalition (http://www.iaonevoicecoalition.org) is a must. We need to be involved in calls for action, whether through emails, letters, blogging, phone calls, and if need be, demonstrations.
Second, be vigilant. Be aware of bias issues as they arise. Bring them to our attention via the One Voice coalition.
Third, take time to talk to someone dear to you, or better, a young person, about what it means for them and their future.
And last, petition, call, and write your Mayor or local leaders and oppose giving film permits to race-baiting, ethnic-bashing, stereotyping programs like MTV’s “Jersey Shore.”
UNICO National, the nation’s largest Italian American service organization, with local chapters throughout the U.S., was founded in 1922. Its volunteer members support charitable, educational, and community service projects while promoting Italian heritage and combating negative stereotyping.