Climbing Jacob’s Ladder: A White New York Times Editor Converts to Judaism

Just how powerful is Jewish influence over the prestige media in America?  So powerful, non-Jews are willing to sell their souls — literally, if selling a soul can be literal — to prove their fealty to Jewish power and achieve journalistic success.  Consider the revealing essay of Dana Jennings, a New York Times editor, appearing below an illustration of a baseball hat reading “My Other Hat is a Yarmulke” in the “Week in Review” section on Sunday.

Jennings, born Protestant in New Hampshire, describes a conversion that came about because of his Jewish wife and interest in the supposedly more open-minded religion of Judaism.  The marriage happened in 1981, and the conversion, not until 2004.  Along the way, “I sought, and found, solace, refuge and a way of being in the Judaism of my wife and sons … found a depth that had been missing from the religion of my childhood.”

Jennings amazingly claims his conversion “isn’t much different from other American journeys to a new faith — whether it be from megachurch to Zen monastery, or from mosque to the Cross.”

Jennings is deluded.  It is impossible to observe the saturation of big media, especially the New York Times, with Jewish reporters, editors, owners, columnists and opinion writers, and come away with the conclusion a non-Jew journalist’s conversion was a simple matter of “yearning for a different faith.”  A very convenient yearning, as it happens.

Imagine, for instance, a Times staffer’s conversion to fundamentalist Christianity.  How often do you think that’s happened?  And what do you think the reaction would be?

Right. Horror-stricken faces, uncomfortable silence, snickers and whispers.  I can even imagine a confrontation over the matter, after a few drinks at a party.

But Judaism?  Think of all the new opportunities for warm chit-chat Jennings now has with the Jews of the New York Times, as well as the power elite in his New Jersey suburb and synagogue.

Years ago, while working at the Philadelphia Inquirer as a cub reporter, I watched as one white gentile reporter, a woman, married a Jewish man, and considered conversion.  Another white gentile reporter, also a woman, had already done so, and was buried in the conversion classes.

A third reporter, a Jewish woman, proudly told us that she was reclaiming her Jewish surname after it had been Anglicanized for a generation by her father.  I suppose this was meant to demonstrate heroism and ethnic authenticity, but given that the paper’s top editor was Jewish and there were Jews in “power positions” all throughout the paper, it looks in retrospect more opportunistic than heroic.

The point is that Mr. Jennings is hardly unique. A full investigation would probably reveal many other instances of white (or even black and Hispanic) journalists converting to Judaism, marrying Jews, adopting Jewish goals and values, taking care to focus on Jewish cares and concerns, and so on. (As I’ve written in the past, journalism in America — the New York Times being a good example — is overloaded with stories by, for and about Jews and their concerns.)

I might also note that converting to the religion practiced by the power elite in any society is not unique.  Once upon a time in America, you might have had conversions to Christianity for the same reasons. (One of my  ancestors converted from Quakerism to Episcopalianism to better maneuver socially on the Upper East Side.)  But today’s conversions — to Judaism — show you who holds the power now.

(For an interesting gauge along these lines, try reading the New York Times wedding announcements some time, and tally the percentage of ceremonies performed by a rabbi.)

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What is surprising, however, is that a journalist as clever as Mr. Jennings would trumpet his awkward attempt to join the Jews and not see how transparent his motivations are.  I can even imagine Jews themselves laughing about a line like this:  “We Jews speak of the ancient sages Hillel and Rabbi Akiva as if we just had an expresso with them at Starbucks.”

But we should thank Mr. Jennings for his revelations.  We now have one more explanation for why big media treats Jews as the center of the universe, and whites as non-existent. The producers of that media themselves — even if white — strive to shed their own white existence and adopt a Jewish one.

None of this, of course, makes for “spiritual enrichment.”  It’s craven, unprincipled and pathetic, and it hastens both the spiritual — and perhaps literal — death of whites.  The conversions we really need are to a healthy and self-affirming white group consciousness.

Christopher Donovan is the pen name of an attorney and former journalist.