Another day, another report from a scholar claiming that there is no Amish Mafia and some of the cast may not even be Amish (or no longer in the community). If this sounds familiar, it’s because another scholar made identical claims before the show aired.
This time, Professor Karen Johnson-Weiner an Amish researcher and an anthropology professor at SUNY Potsdam tells YNN.com that no organisation analogous to the Amish Mafia exists as portrayed by Discovery. Moreover, Discovery admits during each show that it’s a fraud contrived from “eyewitness accounts” and “legend” because none of the events nor crimes occurred as broadcast. For example, the home that’s set ablaze on the show is done so by “Lebanon” Levi King Stoltzfus who’s really a volunteer firefighter who took out insurance, warned local residents and notified local officials, then set and extinguished a blaze under the guise of demonstrating a safe burn for a Discovery documentary.
Asked whether the Amish Mafia exists, Johnson-Weiner says “No!” Adding: “There’s no secret Amish organizations. There’s no brotherhood that aims to make life good for the plain people. Nothing like the Amish Mafia.”
She dismisses it as entertainment and nothing more: “Shows like Amish Mafia and Breaking Amish tells us much more about ourselves. They certainly don’t tell us much about the Amish. That we are so fascinated with these people.”
Also, she says some of the cast may not be Amish (some characters are purportedly baptised and some not): “The very notion that you would call someone who is outside the church ‘Amish’ is strange to the Amish… Anyone baptized in the church who behaved that way would be out of the church.”
Asked whether any Amish know of the show, Johnson-Weiner replied: “They are, to a person, appalled by it.”