Credit: Richie Buxo/Splash News Online

The cast of MTV’s reality hit Jersey Shore has been accused of promoting stereotypes and misrepresenting the state of New Jersey but Caroline Manzo doesn’t understand what the all the fuss is about.

“Everybody has their opinion of the Jersey Shore just like they have an opinion about our show. They’re young kids doing their thing,” the Real Housewives of New Jersey star told PEOPLE at the celebration for her guest stint in the Off-Broadway comedy My Big Gay Italian Wedding.

Manzo, who has a self-described “live and let live” attitude, believes Snooki and the gang should not be expected to serve as an example.

“We have to understand that they don’t represent the state, they don’t represent the culture. They represent themselves. If they make a fool of themselves, they’re just making a fool of themselves. Do your thing,” she says.

But don’t expect to catch Manzo’s Housewives costar Teresa Giudice doing the Jersey fist pump anytime soon. On Monday’s reunion special Giudice said she was “not fond of” the fast paced hookups on the show but took a dig at castmate Danielle Staub saying, “I think Danielle could relate to them.” –Sabrina Ford