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Breaking Amish


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#31

designing1

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 10:10 AM

I thought the same thing lu1wml. I wonder how many of those moms might rethink their decision to give up their child knowing they'd be cut off from the world and lacking basic education. That one guy who left school at 15 and said he couldn't read very well tells me that whatever education they do get is sorely lacking.
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#32

Absolom

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 10:31 AM

The comment that I saw was on TLC's Facebook page last night. It's gone this morning.

I recorded the show early this morning, but I don't think I'm going to be able to get through it. So far it seems deadly dull and unrealistic.
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#33

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 11:45 AM

There is a comment on a Yahoo article that Abe and Rebecca left the Amish 3 years ago, and have a baby together.
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#34

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 12:01 PM

Neptune, that link not only switches this page to yahoo, the "back" button won't get you back here.
If anyone clicks it, do right click and use "open in new tab" or window.

I wonder if they routinely do visit NY to see the sites. In DC, I used to see Amish, or Mennonites, around the Mall and seeing the tourist sites. Both are a day trip by bus or train.

I'm still wondering about the fashion magazines, and how they came to be in the bishop's house.
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#35

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 12:19 PM

if what they're showing about these families is even remotely true,

TLC is apparently playing fast and loose again I read. Supposedly one of the guys has been "living English" for 10 years. If that is true, no wonder there are major holes and possibly all of them had already left ...

The whole thing sounds like a scripted, part recreation/part set up the situation 'fake' reality show TLC/Bravo/A&E and other channels continue to peddle to an ever more ignorant American public who laugh at others' dicomfort....think watching people argue and fight is quality entertainment....and get caught up in the lowest form of escapism.

There are truer ways to learn about the Amish than -- a fake TLC show.

Edited by selhars, Sep 10, 2012 @ 12:20 PM.

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#36

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 2:17 PM

Everyone has brought up just about every thought I've had so far.
Got to add, Abe's family is so interesting to look at. Looking at his sister I'm wondering what is really going on in her head; if she's dying to get out as well or if she's just as brainwashed as they're supposed to be. And Abe didn't speak very kindly to her either. Seemed to me kind of a hint of how women are viewed as submissive and all of that good stuff.
Anyone else notice on TLC's page, poor Rebecca (I think it's her) is in a yellow dress and you can see her undies through it. You can kind of see it in the promo too. Just me? O.K.
From what I'm reading here, I'm disappointed that it ISN'T for them like being beamed from the 1700's to present day. How incredible to witness something like that, right!?
And I know why they choose NYC, but really, could be anywhere if they truly were locked out of society. I can't imagine how overwhelming it would be for someone. And silly me, I worried about how the Duggar children would fare going to NY for the first time.
Why is it when we see Amish or the like set free, they're all "WOOOOO!!!" How do they know to "woooo!!!"? Is this as normal as the urge to dance or laugh?
I hope our questions are answered.
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#37

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 2:50 PM

I hope the Amish aren't really as emotionless as the ones we've seen (the family members much more than the 'escapees'). They make it look like a very sad life.
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#38

mmm0708

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 2:59 PM

Does anyone have any source links supporting the claims that Jeremiah, Abe, and Rebecca haven't lived in the Amish community for several years? I've been looking, unsuccessfully. Thanks.
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#39

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 4:45 PM

I thought the same thing lu1wml. I wonder how many of those moms might rethink their decision to give up their child knowing they'd be cut off from the world and lacking basic education. That one guy who left school at 15 and said he couldn't read very well tells me that whatever education they do get is sorely lacking.

Since Amish are taught by their own, I would think their teachers only have an 8th grade education.
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#40

Absolom

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:01 PM

Staged or re-staged melodrama worse than a soap opera was I thought most of that episode was. Hearing stories about how most of them had left years ago and finding Jeremiah's now deleted myspace page made it all the more unreal. I think it's one of TLC's worst efforts and they've had some bad ones.
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#41

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:28 PM

Since Amish are taught by their own, I would think their teachers only have an 8th grade education.

Ooh, hadn't thought of that. Yikes. Still, unless unaddressed learning disabilities are involved, 8th graders ought to be able to read well enough to function in society.

And I know why they choose NYC, but really, could be anywhere if they truly were locked out of society. I can't imagine how overwhelming it would be for someone.

A few years ago (I checked -- 2004!) there was a show called Amish in the City, where a group of Amish on Rumspringa were housed, Real World-style, in LA with the most ignorant, shallow group of non-Amish people the producers were able to dredge up. Unless I'm misremembering, the Amish on that show didn't use English slang, nor did they mention having private stashes of Spanish or fashion magazines, or express the desire to model. They did want to drive, wear non-Amish clothes, dance, etc. And yes, they experienced culture shock, as did their dumbass English counterparts. Perhaps I was just more trusting of reality TV at the time, but while the cast was put in situations where one group or the other might be the fish out of water, the whole thing seemed much, much more real than this show.

Edited by designing1, Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:29 PM.

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#42

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:43 PM

Random thoughts:

I was somewhat surprised by how "English" these five seemed compared to my thoughts on what Amish folks would be like.

I have to wonder if the adoptees will find their birth parents through this show. I was also wondering at what age Jeremiah was adopted since I got the impression he knew what the "English" life was like. I'd guess he was adopted at 8-10, unless he was really living outside the Amish community prior to shooting this.

It will be interesting to see how the series plays.
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#43

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:47 PM

At least it's a show about the Amish without Mose, a guy that's on every ex-Amish show.
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#44

BlueSkies

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:50 PM

There is a comment on a Yahoo article that Abe and Rebecca left the Amish 3 years ago, and have a baby together.

I read in another comments section that Jeremiah left the Amish community ten years ago, and is divorced with three children. Breaking Amish, how about Faking Amish.
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#45

designing1

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 5:53 PM

At least it's a show about the Amish without Mose, a guy that's on every ex-Amish show.


Hell, according to Wiki, Mose is now producing shows about the Amish. From the Amish in the City page:

Born July 27, 1979 into an Old Order Amish community in Greenwood, Wisconsin, Mose was 24 years old at the time of the series. The only cast member baptized in the Amish faith at the time, he was formerly an Amish schoolteacher.[1] After the series aired, he owned a construction company which went out of business due to health issues. Using the name "Moses" professionally, he currently sells vehicles at an automobile dealership. Now married to a non-Amish woman, with two children and a stepson, he has become a paternal leader in the ex-Amish community near Columbia, Missouri and counsels them. Mose co-produced and appeared in Amish at the Altar, which aired on November 10, 2010, and Amish: Out of the Order, which aired on December 8, 2010, both on the National Geographic Channel. He currently co-produces and stars in the 2012 National Geographic Channel series Amish: Out of Order. Mose maintains a photo gallery on his personal website.


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#46

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 6:11 PM

Many will remember the short lived series, Amish in the City. It lasted for all of two seasons 2006/2007. One of the female cast members of AITC (Ruth) looks a helluva lot like Sabrina from Breaking Amish. Considering that AITC was filmed in 2006, add a few years (6) + too much spray tanner = could Sabrina and Ruth be the same person ?

Not sure if I am allowed to put a link up. Try g o o gling 'Amish in the City, Breaking Amish, same cast'.

Breaking Amish is anything but candid reality.
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#47

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 8:42 PM

I remember Amish in the City - and one girl being really startled by stars embedded in sidewalks in Los Angeles. Those people, I could believe hadn't experienced the English life much. While many in the show didn't know how to help the Amish, some of them did band together to help a young man earn his GED.

Jeremiah is being outed as (1) divorced and the father of three and (2) having recently deleted his Myspace and Facebook accounts by an ex-Amish person. Source. The author suggests that Kate was posing as the Bishop's Wife in Jeremiah's segments, based on the style of headdress. His take on the rudeness of the five youths in the first episode is quite interesting.

Edited by neptune42, Sep 10, 2012 @ 8:44 PM.

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#48

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 10:10 PM

I think picking a group doing rumspringa would have been the more interesting choice. There is no drama in whether a 32 year old stays out or goes back.
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#49

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Posted Sep 10, 2012 @ 10:57 PM

Mr. ButterQueen grew up Amish, but broke away from the religion after high school....as did a few of his siblings.

Mr. ButterQueen is a physician, and a few of his siblings attended college as well.

My mother-in-law, and a few of DH's siblings are still Amish, and things are just....complicated.

MIL has no television, radio, newspaper or magazines, but due to being widowed at a young age, had to work outside the home. I am bored to death when we visit. She has electricity and drives a car...no longer a horse and buggy.

There are 2 siblings, who are traditional Amish, that won't eat a meal at the same table with us, and we are not allowed to sleep in their homes. Their wives do not work and never have.

The men/boys can wear casual pants and shirts, but the women/girls must wear the plain dresses/prayer cap. I find that disgustingly chauvinistic but the Amish religion in general puts men on a pedestal.

My in-laws are originally from Lancaster, PA and it is a lifestyle I could not/would not lead. When we visit, we stay in a hotel. Amish beliefs vary from church community to church community in regards to lifestyle.

I am saving the show to watch with Dr. ButterQueen.

Edited by ButterQueen, Sep 10, 2012 @ 11:00 PM.

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#50

Kel Varnsen

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 7:29 AM

Anyway, they're using everyday "English" expressions like "it sucks," "that takes balls," "it's really pissing me off," and "this Amish crap." (Loved that one). Where do they learn those expressions? Like if they don't have TV/internet/radio or anything, then when do they interact with the English to learn it?


Well they go to public school until grade 8 so I am sure they pick up some pretty standard slang. I am sure I was saying things sucked when I was in grade 8.

Perhaps it's because I couldn't stop comparing it to "Out of Order" and "Meet the Hutterites", both of which were far more interesting than this show.


You think that's bad. The last thing I watched about the Amish was a documentary about them on the PBS American Experience series. That was excellent, this I don't think will be.

So many of the packing scenes had to have been recreated. Like that shot of Rebecca standing outside the door, looking in. You can't tell me her grandfather let the camera crew in the house to film that.


That made me laugh. So did the end part where they were all walking away from their homes, since I was totally picturing a director off camera yelling at them directions like "walk faster" or "show more emotion" and having to do a bunch of takes to get the right look.

I think picking a group doing rumspringa would have been the more interesting choice. There is no drama in whether a 32 year old stays out or goes back.

This could be interesting, although from my understanding from the documentary I mentioned above, for a lot of Amish kids rumspringa consists of basically just hanging out with your friends, listening to music, and maybe wearing more standard teenager clothes. The thing that interested me most was the adopted kids. Does that mean there could be black or asian Amish people?
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#51

jemmy

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 8:16 AM

Well they go to public school until grade 8 so I am sure they pick up some pretty standard slang. I am sure I was saying things sucked when I was in grade 8.


Did the kids on this show go to public school? I was only half-watching and may have missed that. In my area, the Amish have their own schools that they attend.
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#52

Absolom

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 9:34 AM

I think picking a group doing rumspringa would have been the more interesting choice. There is no drama in whether a 32 year old stays out or goes back.


Could a 32 year old divorced man who has been out for ten years or more even go back? Ever? I feel like the episode was worse than fake and was basically lying to the viewers. As ButterQueen says even visiting would be complicated.

I'm a bit surprised at how well the first episode did given how bad I thought it was. It had 3.097 million viewers and a 1.1 rating. Rating wise it was .1 better than the series finale of Army Wives. I'm not sure I can watch this show any more, but I'll try to remember to check the ratings to see if it plummets or not.

Edited by Absolom, Sep 11, 2012 @ 10:19 AM.

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#53

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 11:06 AM

This could be interesting, although from my understanding from the documentary I mentioned above, for a lot of Amish kids rumspringa consists of basically just hanging out with your friends, listening to music, and maybe wearing more standard teenager clothes.


I guess I was thinking of the Cold Case episode where the rumspringas went to the big city and one of them accidentally killed one of the others. (Cold Case is the show with the blond woman and her Hispanic partner who solve cold cases isn't it? If not, then that show.)
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#54

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 11:19 AM

Yes, Cold Case did an episode involving teenage girls living in Philly during their rumspringa. It was a good one too.

I will say that Breaking Amish doesn't hold a candle to Devil's Playground either. That's the best of the documentaries and shows that I've seen on the Amish and it seems to be what all of these Amish fakeality shows are trying to recreate.

I don't think that I will continue to watch Breaking Amish because it is such a cheap fake. None of these people look young enough to still be in rumspringa and none of them are interesting enough to watch for any length of time. I have a feeling that most of their struggles will be manufactured and their interactions with the outside world heavily scripted. I don't think that any of them have any intention of going back to the Amish and for some of them, they probably are not allowed to come back even if they wanted to.

These Amish fakeality shows reek of desperation. The Amish are losing their way of life and they will continue to modernize because there is no way for them to support themselves without modern technology. Yeah, they can refuse to drive or have phones or computers in their homes...but that doesn't make them special or different or closer to God imo.
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#55

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 11:58 AM

I will say that Breaking Amish doesn't hold a candle to Devil's Playground either. That's the best of the documentaries and shows that I've seen on the Amish and it seems to be what all of these Amish fakeality shows are trying to recreate.


I haven't seen that one, but have you seen the American Experience episode on the Amish? It is excellent, so much better than Breaking Amish. For one thing they explain what the hell is going on. You can watch it on PBS.org. Their FAQabout Amish life is pretty good too, and might answer some questions about what is going on in this show.
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#56

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 12:26 PM

Word to your last sentence, auntie thesis!
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#57

ShannenB2000

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 12:44 PM

I don't think that any of them have any intention of going back to the Amish and for some of them, they probably are not allowed to come back even if they wanted to.


I thought Abe said it was his intention to go back and marry an Amish girl. He seems like the only one I could ever see going back, but then again I suspect much fakery going on with his story as well since his family was so open to being filmed. And in the preview it showed them coming to try bring him back, which doesn't really seem very Amish to me--I kinda felt their feelings on these things were akin to "You made your choice, live with it, we're not begging you to return."
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#58

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 1:58 PM

And in the preview it showed them coming to try bring him back, which doesn't really seem very Amish to me--I kinda felt their feelings on these things were akin to "You made your choice, live with it, we're not begging you to return."


I think for most people. Amish or otherwise, blood is thicker than the Bible when push comes to shove.
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#59

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Posted Sep 11, 2012 @ 9:30 PM

Based on a friend whose grandfather was originally Amish from Lancaster, shunning can take many forms, dependent on family and bishop. Her grandfather was shunned for cutting his beard and refusing to grow it back, however, she and her family would still go back and visited. The only real evidence of the shunning was that they couldn't share meals. Apparently some will even have separate plates for them.

My friend was raised Mennonite, so the grandfather didn't entirely leave, however they were part of a normal English appearing Mennonite group that didn't have special rules for dress. They didn't even particularly have religious rules, as she was fairly agnostic, but was still accepted in their church. Their focus was on social justice. So, even with those differences, she could go back to Amish relatives.
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#60

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Posted Sep 12, 2012 @ 1:53 AM

That one guy who left school at 15 and said he couldn't read very well tells me that whatever education they do get is sorely lacking.


This really had me wondering. We home school and there is a publisher of school materials developed by Mennonites for the Mennonite and Amish communities. The materials are also often used in home school environments. The materials are quite good and there is no way a student could complete the materials and have only a 4th grade reading level or a poor education - at least in the foundational skills. I have not seen their history or science but I have seen their grammar, writing and math instruction. The grammar and writing is very complete. The math does stop at Algebra I which clearly is not sufficient for typical high school graduation and college admissions but it's farther along than they are indicating in this show. They basically imply that once a kid can read Hop on Pop, add 2+2 and measure a piece of wood they are educated enough. If this is true for those they have chosen for this show, I do not think it's true for all Mennonites/Amish.

Also, I want to concur with those who said that Mennonites are often quite a world away from the Amish. I had a Mennonite professor in college and I was a computer science major. He taught software coding so clearly he believed in things that plug in :-)
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