While MTV originally planned to band-aid the episode of Jersey Shore featuring Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi getting punched--hard--in the face by by airing a PSA cautioning "Violence against women in any form is a crime," they've now decided to not run the footage at all.
An MTV representative said "What happened to 'Snooki' was a crime and obviously extremely disturbing. After hearing from our viewers, further consulting with experts on the issue of violence, and seeing how the video footage has been taken out of context to not show the severity of this act or the resulting consequences, MTV has decided not to air Snooki being physically punched in next week's episode."
Does that mean the clip wasn't disturbing before it went viral? Jersey Shore was shot months ago, and MTV has been sitting on the footage since. Were they waiting for moral public outcry or for violence against women to go viral?
As coverage of this horrendous woman-hating event unfolds, it is important to continue to focus on the misogynist nature of Sodini's actions. This was a hate crime against women, and should be labeled as such. More coverage of the sexist nature of the shooting and the ways in which we as feminists can begin to process it (and encourage the media to do the same), as well as some historical context for gendered hate crimes, can be found by visiting the following links:
This shooting (one of the many violent crimes targeting women over the past several years) is a tragedy, but also an opportunity for issues of misogyny and violence to be addressed in the media. How do you feel about the coverage of this event so far? Is the gender-based nature of Sodini's actions being properly highlighted? What are you hoping to see from the media in terms of future coverage? Please share your thoughts in the comments section, and continue to do so as more information is released.