The show plays upon the stereotype of the guido, prompting criticism from groups such as the National Italian American Foundation, UNICO National, and the Order Sons of Italy in America for using «ethnic slurs, violence and poor behavior to marginalize and stereotype Italian-Americans». Prior to the premiere of the show UNICO asked MTV to cancel the show because of the apparent play on stereotypes from the promos. UNICO National President Andre DiMino said that the behavior in the promos is offensive and stereotype-promoting and that «MTV is using incredibly pejorative conditions, ‘Guido’ and ‘Guidette’, to market a program and as a corporation that is not appropriate.» After the show premiered, UNICO National claims they «can’t maintain up with the volume of calls» from «outraged» Italian Americans.

UNICO National President Andre DiMino said in a statement «MTV has festooned the ‘bordello-like’ home set with Italian flags and red, white and green maps of New Jersey while each and every other cutaway shot is of Italian signs and symbols. They are blatantly as properly as subliminally bashing Italian-Americans with just about every technique possible. .<br>..<br> (The cast members) are an embarrassment to themselves, their heritage and their families.»

Linda Stasi, an Italian-American New York Post columnist, criticized MTV saying that Jersey Coast is a show «..<br>.in which Italian-Americans are stereotyped (clearly at the urging of its producer) into degrading and debasing themselves—and, by extension, all Italian-Americans—and furthering the popular Television notion that Italian-Americans are gel-haired, thuggish, ignoramuses with fake tans, no manners, no diction, no taste, no education, no sexual discretion, no hairdressers (for confident), no real understanding of Italian lifestyle and no ambition beyond expanding steroid-and silicone-enhanced bodies into sizes very best suited for floating above Macy’s on Thanksgiving.»

On January 10, 2010, Andre DiMino called for Jersey Coast to be canceled saying «enough is enough» and that the series isn’t just an insult to Italian-Americans or Jersey Coast residents, but to everyone. Dimino claims that it has been clear from the beginning that it is MTV’s intent to «ridicule, stereotype and defame Italian-Americans» and «to say to the planet that this is what Italian-Americans are really like». Dimino further expresses his disgust saying that Italian-Americans continue to be the only ethnic group that it is acceptable to negatively stereotype and demean. Dimino also called MTV’s removal of the conditions guido and guidette from their promos and Web site a «partial victory».

On February 17, 2010, DiMino released a statement to RadarOnline.com stating:

«We have consulted attorneys and are prepared to take legal action because we are so angry about the situation. I cannot say too a great deal right now about the actual legal measures we are going to take but we sense what MTV are doing with Jersey Coast is outrageous. The use of words like ‘Guidos’ and ‘Guidettes’ is racial stereotyping in the worst possible sense and they are portraying youthful Italian Americans in the worst possible light. They wouldn’t attempt and get away with the same tactics if it was show total of youthful African American or Jewish kids so why is it acceptable to portray Italian Americans in this way? There are a good deal of youthful American Italians who serve in the community and the armed services who are ashamed of Jersey Coast and we have to have to stand-up for them.»

Italian-American actress Alyssa Milano said she was «upset» after viewing the trailer on Youtube and won’t be watching the show.

Contrary to popular response, Italian-American New York Daily News columnist S. E. Cupp believes Italian-Americans really should not be mad at MTV but thankful for the company shining a spotlight on a small but real subset of the lifestyle that they really should raise their kids to be nothing like stating, «Somebody requirements to explain to me how it’s MTV’s fault that the subjects of its reality show behave like stereotypical idiots. In fact, Jersey Coast is proof that some stereotypes, while not representative, are in some cases real.»[80] Cupp also goes on to say that since the cast of the show are real people that the show’s detractors are actually insulting Italian-Americans by suggesting that the cast is having enjoyable pretending to be stereotypes.

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