By Zuleyka Indarte
Amaury Nolasco has offended a lot of his fellow Puerto Ricans in the network premiere of “Work It”.
In the episode, which aired on Tuesday night, Nolasco’s character, Angel Ortiz, says the line, “I’m Puerto Rican…I’d be great at selling drugs.” Soon afterwards, a group of very upset Puerto Ricans gathered in front of ABC’s New York studios in protest of the offensive line. Many held signs reading, “I am Puerto Rican and not a drug dealer.”
This is not the first instance of offense the show has engendered among viewers. Transgender advocates have also expressed opposition. Last month, GLAAD (the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) and the Human Rights Campaign created an ad featured in Variety which stated, “Since ABC has a record of positive portrayals of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, they should know how offensive this show is, and that it even has the potential to jeopardize the safety of many transgender Americans in the process.”
Nolasco avoided mentioning anything in regards to the show’s latest mishap in a recent tweet. He wrote, “Thank you all for watching ‘Work It’ last night…Meant the world to me. Trust me, when I say it gets even better. I promise!” The network chose not to comment on the episode as well.
The “Work It” network premiere received lower ratings than expected. If the show continues to offend the masses in a similar fashion, it doesn’t seem like development for future episodes will be in the works. Viewers will just have to wait and see if Nolasco’s promise is true.