Last night I watched episode 2 of TLC’s Breaking Amish. I didn’t like it anymore than the first one.
The first lie occurs just seconds into the show as the following words display on the screen; “They’ll leave their community for the first time”. It has already been firmly established that that is just not true. Why does TLC keep lying to us? Do they think we’re just going to take it?
One of the biggest differences between this episode and the first one, is the soundtrack. You might not even notice it unless you consciously think about it while watching, but there’s a big difference between the two episodes. During the first episode, the cast members were leaving the sinister (that’s what they’d have you think) Amish, and the soundtrack was laden with ominous music as fast-moving clouds raced across the screen. In contrast, the second episode has an upbeat and exciting soundtrack, completing the illusion that these kids have grasped onto an exciting and life-changing opportunity.
Something else that I noticed was the cast’s language. I’ve heard many people (that aren’t all that familiar with the Amish) claim that the excessive use of the words “like” and “freaking” and the one occurrence of “skank” are proof that these kids haven’t been Amish for a long time. That’s not necessarily true. Many Amish kids pick up these terms during their occasional interactions with “English” kids and it spreads throughout Amish youth culture. It is nothing new to hear real Amish kids use words like that. There is, however, another aspect of their language use that indicates that Pennsylvania Dutch hasn’t been their primary spoken language for quite some time–and that is fluency. These cast members speak English fluently and comfortably, and that’s just not something that a fresh-off-the-farm Amish kid is able to do. One exception to this is when the Amish parents encourage English language use at home. It’s not common but it does happen.
When the cast first reaches New York, I get the feeling that they’re acting a little too much like fish out of the water. They react more strongly to these “new” sights and experiences than the typical emotionally-reserved Amish person does. Perhaps it is because they are overcompensating for having to act like they just left the Amish. There’s a recent interview on Time.com in which an ex-Old Order Mennonite man, Tim Sauder, explains the true reactions of Amish and Old Order Mennonite upon visiting the Big Apple for the first time. Read that interview here.
In this episode, Abe and Rebecca begin to like each other. Or do they? In real life they’ve been a non-Amish couple for years and even have a kid. Rebecca says she’s never lived with electricity. You mean, not even after leaving the Amish years ago? Abe claims to have never experienced a shower and doesn’t know for sure what a microwave is. You mean to say he’s so stupid that after leaving the Amish years ago, he still hasn’t encountered a microwave?
Rebecca is used to an outhouse for a bathroom, and is supposedly just off the farm. She sure doesn’t have any trouble figuring out how to get a cot into their room. She claims to have never slept in the same bed with anyone else and yet evidence suggests that she gave birth to Abe’s child.
Abe says he’s never really partied before. This mugshot and arrest record says otherwise. This arrest record shows that Abe was arrested in Kentucky in April 2008 for alcohol intoxication in a public place. Source
All three girls appear to have had their eyebrows plucked before leaving the Amish. Wouldn’t that have been vain? Kate and Jeremiah appear to have pierced ears. That’s definitely not allowed in the Amish. Click on the images to enlarge them:
Kate carries a pink, striped, Victoria’s Secret bag that is probably not allowed by the Amish.
Sabrina claims Mennonites aren’t allowed to stay in hotels because they have bars. I know several Beachy Mennonite (very conservative) and they have no problem with hotels. Sabrina also wears a lot of makeup. How is that not vain?
One of the cast claims that Amish guys don’t shop. Jeremiah, in a blatant show of sexism, wonders which of the girls is going to cook the food for them. I know plenty of Amish men who cook and go grocery shopping.
Jeremiah implies that he’s never driven a vehicle before. So in all the years he hasn’t been Amish, he’s never driven? I know from personal experience with Jeremiah that he has driven plenty.
Last but not least, the cast was incredibly mean to each other. Abe and Jeremiah insult each other behind each others backs. Rebecca is a complete bi***, and then the other girls steal her teeth. Real Amish wouldn’t fight like this, especially when put in a new environment such as New York City. Rather than fighting, they would band together and form a clique to protect each other even if they’re from different communities.
One young lady on Facebook had this to say; “Those amish are mean and bullies. I thougt the amish were all about kindness and helping each other, boy I was wrong…” No! No! No! The Amish are not like this. It only happens when a few bad apples do it for the money. This show is spinning off misconceptions about the Amish left and right and that’s why I will continue spending hours and hours of my time, proving that Breaking Amish is fake.