Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., is firing off against last night's episode of “American Idol,” where one contender, a 16-year-old boy named Travis Orlando, took camera crews on a tour of the Bronx neighborhood where he grew up.
“You have robberies, you have killings, anything you can possibly imagine, it goes on here,” Orlando said of the shelter where he lived with his family, which appears to be on the Grand Concourse. The video, complete with a dramatic musical montage, shows shots of liter on the street and ambulances whirring by, sirens blazing. You can watch the whole thing above, including Orlando's audition (he sings the Beatles song “Eleanor Rigby.”)
In a statement sent out this morning, Diaz said he's “disgusted” with the show's treatment of the borough.
“Rather than focus on the amazing revitalization the Bronx has seen over the past three decades, the producers of the show chose instead to highlight the negative stereotypes that have plagued our borough for years,” he said. “The portrayal of the Bronx by the producers of American Idol in such an extremely negative light is not only shameful, it does not accurately represent how far the Bronx has come.”
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