On last week’s episode of Jersey Shore, the housemates’ toilet troubles continued. A plumber came to the house and discovered that someone had tried to flush a T-shirt down the toilet, which caused the initial problem. When JWoww and Snooki saw the shirt, the word they used to refer to it got bleeped. What could possibly be so offensive about a shirt?
According to some internet commenters, the word that was bleeped was “Dago,” which Urban Dictionary defines as “a highly offensive racial slur for Italians.” A “Dago Tee” is a nickname for a sleeveless T-shirt that is sometimes used in the Italian-American community. (You might also know it by its other offensive name, a wifebeater.) Others think that the word was “Guinea,” another Italian slur. Urban Dictionary says that a “guinea tee” is “a white, ribbed, sleevless [sic] tee-shirt” usually “worn by Guidos.”
I guess MTV is fine with showing close-up shots of toilets filled with poo, The Situation maybe snorting cocaine, Ronnie and Sammi’s borderline abusive relationship, plenty of infrared-camera bed antics, a dude punching Snooki in the face, and various cast members calling women sluts and whores, but a slur against Italian-Americans is totally not cool. That, despite the fact that this entire show is basically a slur against Italian-American people.