The Entryway Gets a Smackdown and Reveals Two LAs

Your house is so dirty your mama has to wear combat boots! Ahh, brings back my high school days.

Here at the CyberFrequenices headquarters -- we were sure the smackdown was coming to a multimedia project called The Entryway, about a couple of white chicks who move into a house of Latino immigrants to learn Spanish.

Now always start with the positive, right? So the good news is it's a great idea and super cool looking site...but...instead of getting to know the family, they totally "otherize" them.

They chastise the family for not learning English, seeming to equate it to a year junior abroad in Spain.

It's like duuude...they left the country and people they love behind to make ends meet, not to sit in the Barcelona sun conjugating verbs. I taught ESL for years and it was so friggin hard for folks to make it to class because they worked two and three jobs -- and when they did come they were bone tired.

But to our shock, the smackdown didn't come. And in fact LAist wrote a gushing blog, the public radio types weren't far behind, the Knight Foundation's promoting them, and they got a shout out from LA Observed.

When the smackdown did finally come it wasn't from the white blogosphere but blogger Daniel Hernandez. Lots of angry folks commented on his blog, including Ask a Mexican's Gustavo Arellano.

Now I've actually met The Entryway ladies and I gotta say they're really nice women - just totally clueless about matters of race.

But leaving aside race for a minute, I have some real issues with their approach journalistically.

Essentially the family featured in The Entryway are opening up their home and private lives to The Entryway ladies, and The Entryway ladies are turning around and VERY publicly dissing them.

In this entry they talk about how they thought they had finally found a clean Latino home (the implication being most aren't), but then to their horror there were, gasp, cockroaches.

Now to me this borders on petty gossip -- it's not Perez Hilton telling all about Britney Spears, in which case fair game. But it's just a little small family they're supposed to be "getting to know", and maybe developing an affinity for. Now I've never even me them but my first thought was -- how's the little girl in the family going to feel when the whole world reads about her family's cockroach moment without putting it into any kind of context?

We had a show where we talked to blogger Shannyn Moore, who made allegations about Sarah Palin. Now I'm not a huge Palin fan and I certainly wouldn't call her powerless! But we still went to Palin for comment.

If you're gonna dog someone out that you're covering -- other than the president or Bill Gates -- then journalistically you should have the balls to tell them to their face and include their response. It's only ethical, it's only fair.

In fact I gotta go and send The Entryway ladies my blog right now so I'm not being a hypocrite!

(((funny spoof by Dennis Romero here)))

Tanya Jo Miller