Thursday, January 06, 2011

Those With an Intimate Acquaintance of Hebrew Texts: NBC's David Gregory

David Gregory, host of NBC's Meet the Press, is discovering the importance of Judaism in his life. In a conversation with Erica Brown, scholar-in-residence at the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, with whom he has been studying Hebrew texts, Gregory recounted how he was brought up Jewish -- son of a Jewish father and non-Jewish mother -- with a sense of "peoplehood and tradition," but not much "theology or spirituality." But, with the encouragement of his non-Jewish wife, it was "enough to carry me to a sense of identity" and give him a desire to "probe further" the question of  "Why be Jewish?"

"What I decided was [that] what mattered was not just a sense of actual knowledge" or attending High Holiday services, "it was to understand how to live Jewishly ... [and] find daily meaning in Judaism."

So now "Shabbat has become a lot more important to me" as a way to "stop and think about what matters most to me ... what kind of father and husband I want to be." And he says a bedtime Sh'ma with his children as a way to model Judaism for them and "create a Jewish narrative in their lives that's not just obligatory."

"I was born into a tradition," he said. "Who am I to let it slip through my fingers?"

I wonder if David Gregory has read any unusual books lately?

David Gregory used to be chief White House reporter for NBC and is a colleague of NBC's Andrea Mitchell, spouse of former Federal Reserve Chairman, Alan Greenspan.  Gregory earned his bachelor's degree at The American University in Washington, DC., where I earned an LL.M. in International Trade Law in December 1984.  Gregory -- to the chagrin of former President George W. Bush -- speaks fluent French.

Incidentally, I incorporated a quote in my book Significant Moments in 2003 as a memorial to NBC reporter David Bloom, who died in Iraq in April of that year.

But I believe that my supposed personality, my supposed motivation, and my supposed hunger for publicity really had little to do with what was bothering these men. I believe that they could not get over the fact that . . . 
J. Moussaieff Masson, Final Analysis: The Making and Unmaking of a Psychoanalyst. 

. . . months earlier . . . 
Thomas Hardy, A Pair of Blue Eyes. 

. . . pictures of me . . . 
Mary Roberts Rinehart, Dangerous Days.

. . . had appeared in the New York Times . . . 
J. Moussaieff Masson, Final Analysis: The Making and Unmaking of a Psychoanalyst. 

. . . including one in which . . . 
Mary Williams Walsh, David Bloom, 39, Dies in Iraq; Reporter Was With Troops (New York Times, Monday, April 7, 2003). 

. . . I was probably not dressed properly. 
J. Moussaieff Masson, Final Analysis: The Making and Unmaking of a Psychoanalyst. 


Gary Freedman said...

David Gregory gives new meaning to the term High Holidays!

Gary Freedman said...

Rick Sanchez: "Half-Jews are taking over the media!"