National Geographic’s “American Gypsies” leads to a potential class action lawsuit by the Romani community

From Rromanizor.com, a social network which supports Romani (Gypsy) issues:

… These shows do not represent even a small fraction of the total Romani (Gypsy) population. It represents only a few outrageous and controversial individuals in a way that is SCRIPTED to exaggerate a romanticized “mafia” image for ratings and profit. The producers and networks make no honest attempt to educate the public about the very deep and diverse Romani culture.

This is especially damaging as National Geographic has a reputation for being a respected and scientifically accurate organization. People believe what they see on National Geographic is the truth. …

We face discrimination in education, in hiring, in housing, in healthcare. It is a matter of historical fact that we have been enslaved, forcibly sterilized, forcibly deported and subjected to genocide throughout our entire history.

The Czechoslovakian Ombudsman reported that an estimated 90,000 Romani women were forcibly sterilized in Czechoslovakia since 1980. … 

Shows like American Gypsies are far more damaging than meets the eye. Propaganda was the tool Nazis used to dehumanize Romanies and Jews in World War II. These new shows are dehumanizing us again.

Hitler had movies and radio shows made to mock and demonize Romanies and Jews. This negative media was so effective in brainwashing ordinary people that upstanding citizens became eager to accept and even take part in the horrors of the holocaust.

Well over one million Romanies were murdered like animals because they were made to look like animals.

This is more than an argument about the exercise of free speech. Shows like American Gypsies perpetuate hate, resentment and inaccurate racial stereotypes on the biggest stage in the world. This causes real and demonstratable damage for which the show producers and networks must be held liable.

Millions of people see these shows every week. Romanies are suffering while supposedly “educational” networks like TLC and National Geographic rake in profits pedaling scripted and sensationalized tabloid garbage. …

… Would you hire a Gypsy? Would you still hire a Gypsy if the only representation you had seen was that which is being presented by National Geographic?

National Geographic is demonizing Romanies. 

Through negative, inaccurate and irresponsible portrayals in mass media.

This is causing actual and demonstrable harm for which these shows, their producers and the networks who show them must be held accountable for.

Join this group to help us fight to bring them down and make them answer for what they are doing!

But first, please click this link to be taken to sign a petition we made. It is an agreement to participate in a potential class action lawsuit or other legal actions against the makers of these shows.

http://www.causes.com/actions/1669292

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Does the “demonizing” of Romanies matter? Does the perpetuation of “racial stereotypes” have an impact on this community? Or is National Geographic’s American Gypsies “just TV”? You make the call:

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Read the whole thing here.

 

  • Guest

    From an article on huffingtonpost.com — “American Gypsies” Producer Ralph Macchio Compares Series to “The Sopranos,” “Jersey Shore.” You have got to be kidding: “The Sopranos” was an award-winning TV show, a great example of good television programming; “Jersey Shore,” on the other hand, is a great example of terrible TV and a great example of what is wrong with “reality” programming. Shame on National Geographic. 

    • Agreed. … Or as someone else has observed: Imagine if the reality show Jersey Shore was called American Italians. The public uproar would be deafening, and justifiably so. 

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