The last two Wednesdays I have watched a new “reality series” on the Discovery called Amish Mafia which is supposed to be about some guys who are a vigilante group who deal with the problems the Amish and Mennonites run in to but do not want to take to “the English”, ie, the police. You can read the premise of the series at the About link above, but basically they are a bunch of guys driving around in a black Cadillac Escalade, a black Mercedes and a large black truck packed full of semi-automatic weapons. They pay visits to people who may have clipped a horse and buggy and blow out their windshield. They pay a visit to a church elder who is visiting a prostitute. They burn fields of “green corn” ie pot. They also throw parties for Amish and Mennonite teens when they are going through their “wilding” period before they decide whether to be baptized and truly embrace the Amish faith, offering up lots of beer and some internet porn for their entertainment. They shake down businesses for protection since they do not carry insurance etc. There is basically nothing different they do than the previous mafias that the Italians, Germans and Chinese have done before. The show glorifies their way of dishing out justice for those “poor helpless people”.
I assume these are just actors even though there are police reports heavily blacked out with their pictures on, but those can be faked. The local police supposedly look the other way. And there are some clips of real local news reports on them as i recognize the reporters. If they are real people i am sure their business is booming.
I live about 50 miles north of Lancaster PA where this is filmed, and about 15 miles south of some large Amish and Mennonite communities. I have dealt with them in business and find them to be perfectly decent human beings. They are run by their Bishops, and their judgment is shunning them from the community and denying them entry into Heaven, so i think that is probably justice enough for these God fearing people to keep them on the straight and narrow in their beliefs.
I have to admit the show is entertaining in some ways, and well filmed with beautiful countryside shots, and believe me i Never watch any reality TV shows. I cannot find any good YT videos to embed here, but if you go to the Official Discovery Channel Amish Mafia web page there is a fairly long video showing long clips from the two shows out already. For legal reasons i am not condemning this show, just adding my own two cents regarding a people I respect. I am probably addicted now and will watch future episodes. Hell, what’s next? A reality show of people with Crone’s Disease??? LOL
Addendum 2/25/2013 – Here are some links to stories about the supposed Amish Mafia in local newspapers, the Lebanon Daily News and Lancaster Intelligencer Journal which have good feedback comments under them too.