|This article may contain inappropriate or misinterpreted citations that do not verify the text. (December 2014)|
Prager speaking at the California Capitol Building, 2008
August 2, 1948 |
New York City
|Alma mater||Brooklyn College
|Occupation||Radio host, political commentator, author, and television personality|
|Spouse(s)||Janice Adelstein (1981–1986; divorced; 1 child)
Francine Stone (1988–2005; divorced; 1 child)
Susan Reed (2008–present)
Dennis Prager (//; born August 2, 1948) is an American nationally syndicated, politically conservative radio talk show host, columnist, author, and public speaker. He is known for his political and social views, and his views on the origins of moral values.
Life and career
Prager was raised in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Hilda and Max Prager. He attended Yeshiva Rambam and Rabbi Jacob Joseph Jewish day schools, and the Yeshivah of Flatbush High School, where he met his future co-author Joseph Telushkin. He majored in Middle Eastern studies and history at Brooklyn College, graduating cum laude in 1970. He went on to study at the Russian Institute (now Harriman Institute) at Columbia University. He speaks and lectures in several foreign languages, including Russian and Hebrew. He taught Jewish and Russian History at Brooklyn College, and was a Fellow at the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, where he did his graduate work at the Russian Institute (now the Harriman Institute) and Middle East Institute from 1970 to 1972. He is a Media Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University.
Prager started in radio at KABC (AM) in Los Angeles. Starting in 1982, he at first hosted the weekly Religion on the Line, where he "was engaged in interfaith dialogue every Sunday night with a priest, minister, rabbi for 10 years”. He went on to host a daily talk show on KABC. In 1992, Prager made the short film For Goodness Sake with writer and director Jim Abrahams and David Zucker. Released in 1993, It was marketed for ethics training at schools and corporations. "In 1994-95, he also had his own daily national television show."
Since 1999, he has hosted a nationally syndicated talk show from KRLA in Los Angeles. His show has some recurring segments. The "Happiness Hour" is based on his book Happiness Is a Serious Problem and occurs on the second hour of his show on Fridays. Other regular segments are the "Male/Female Hour", and "Ultimate Issues".
Prager also started a website called "Prager University", that offers five-minute videos on various subjects such as the minimum wage, the Middle East Crisis, and happiness. Video contributors are varied and include columnists George Will and Bret Stephens, British historians Paul Johnson and Andrew Roberts, American Enterprise Institute president Arthur Brooks, former Prime Minister of Spain Jose Maria Aznar, several university professors, and Prager himself. According to Prager, he created the site to challenge the "unhealthy effect intellectually and morally" of the American higher education system. New videos are added to the website about once a week.
Views and opinions
Prager states that the United States is engaged in a culture war over the fundamental moral values on which American society was built. He argues that influential institutions including universities, labor unions, the American Civil Liberties Union, civil rights groups, as well as trial lawyers and most large newspapers and television networks are dominated by "secular leftists". He says they attack and misrepresent Judeo-Christian values and their positive historical effect upon America and the world. In 2005, 24 of his columns were devoted to explaining those values and how he believes they make the United States special.
In light of that, he wrote in 2006 that Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, should not take his Congressional oath using a Koran because "American civilization" has been based on the Bible and its values, and because an oath on another religious text would be unprecedented. Prager explained that though he is a religious Jew and therefore only holds the Old Testament sacred, he would take his oath of office on a Bible that included both the Old Testament and the New Testament, as he would honor a tradition that goes back to President George Washington, and because that is the Bible in which nearly all Americans believe. In response, former New York City Mayor Ed Koch called for Prager to end to his service on the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Council. On December 4, in an interview with Prager, Tucker Carlson also criticized this, saying: "I'm no great defender of the Koran but I'm not sure why America is imperiled by Keith Ellison's taking the oath on it." In response, Prager explained, "It's not imperiled by his taking the oath on it, it's imperiled for substituting the Bible for the first time since George Washington had a Bible at his inauguration...The question is not what he believes in. The question is, 'what is the central text of the American value system?' That‘s why I think this is important. Otherwise I couldn't care less."
Prager has condemned two "libels" of Israel. In 2011, Prager called Israel's apartheid analogy "a libel". And in 2014 he labelled the charge of Israeli "genocide" a libel. He believes that the genesis of the Israeli-Arab conflict is that "Israel would like to exist and recognizes the right of the Palestinians to have a state; the Palestinians, however, and many other Muslims and Arabs, do not recognize the right of a Jewish state of Israel to exist."
Prager's columns are handled by Creators Syndicate. He has been published in the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times and Commentary. His weekly syndicated column appears on such online websites as Townhall.com, National Review Online, Jewish World Review and elsewhere. He also writes a bi-weekly column for The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles.
He is also the author of five books:
- The Nine Questions People Ask About Judaism (with Joseph Telushkin) (1986) ISBN 0-671-62261-7.
- Think a Second Time (44 Essays on 44 Subjects) (1996) ISBN 0-06-098709-X.
- Happiness Is a Serious Problem: A Human Nature Repair Manual (1999) ISBN 0-06-098735-9.
- Why the Jews? The Reason for Antisemitism (with Joseph Telushkin) (2003) ISBN 0-7432-4620-9.
- Still the Best Hope: Why the World Needs American Values to Triumph (2012) ISBN 0061985120.
His books have been translated into Spanish, German, Russian, Korean, Japanese, and Chinese.
- For Goodness Sake, 1993.
- For Goodness Sake II, 1996.
- Israel in a Time of Terror, 2002.
- Baseball, Dennis, & the French, 2011.
- "U.S. conservative groups funding free trips to Israel for Republican leaders, TIME reports". Haaretz. December 8, 2014.
- Levine, Sam (October 29, 2014). "Conservative Pundit Dennis Prager Says College Sexual Assaults Are Lies To Get Votes". The Huffington Post.
- "Townhall.com - the Leading Conservative and Political Opinion Website". Townhall.com.
- Sarah A. Vitale. "Who's who in California, Volume 20". Google Books.
- "XXX III". maxprager.com.
- The Dennis Prager Show
- "Dennis Prager". Archived from the original on July 16, 1998.
- "Articles about Religion On The Line Radio Program - Los Angeles Times".
- "Dennis Prager".
- "Articles about Dennis Prager - Los Angeles Times".
- "A look inside Hollywood and the movies. : GRAND EXPERIMENTS : Maybe If They Put Dennis Prager on an 'Airplane!' It'll Get Off the Ground". Los Angeles Times.
- "For Goodness Sake (1993)". IMDb.
- "O.J. Simpson Has Cameo In Training Movie About Ethics, Morality". AP.
- "Biography - The Dennis Prager Show". The Dennis Prager Show.
- Billy Hallowell. "Radio Host Dennis Prager Has a New Online ‘College’ to Combat Liberal Bias and Teach Judeo-Christian Values". The Blaze.
- "Prager University". prageruniversity.com.
- "The second American civil war: what it's about - Dennis Prager - Page full". Townhall.com. October 14, 2003. Retrieved May 14, 2013.
- Moral absolutes: Judeo-Christian values: Part XI – Dennis Prager – Townhall Conservative Columnists – Page 1
- Town Hall.com/columns=Prager University
- Dennis Prager (November 28, 2006). "America, Not Keith Ellison, decides what book a congressman takes his oath on". American Thinker.
- "Koch Calls for Pundit's Ouster from Shoah Council". The Jewish Daily Forward. December 8, 2006.
- Dennis Prager Controversy in Joining the US Holocaust Memorial Museum from Holocaust Survivors and Remembrance Project.
- "'Tucker' for Dec. 4". msnbc.com.
- "Dennis Prager: Is Israel an Apartheid State?". World Jewish Congress. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
- "Israel -- an Apartheid State?". RealClearPolitics. August 30, 2011. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
- "The Genocide Libel - RealClearPolitics". realclearpolitics.com.
- "The Middle East Problem". Prager University. Retrieved 7 August 2014.
- Prager, Dennis (2012-04-24). Still the Best Hope. ISBN 9780062097811.
- "The Greatest Days of Your Life".
- "Dennis Prager Articles - Political Columnist & Commentator". townhall.com.
- "Dennis Prager Archive - National Review Online". National Review Online.
- "DNB, Katalog der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek". Katalog der Deutschen Nationalbibliothek.
- "For goodness sake II".
- "Israel in a Time of Terror (Video 2002)". IMDb. October 22, 2002.
- "BASEBALL, DENNIS & THE FRENCH -- Highlights". YouTube.