(CBS) – In recognition of Jewish American Heritage Month, CBS News is featuring original reporting on the Jewish American experience across all platforms and stations. The dedicated coverage, which debuted earlier this month, delivers comprehensive storytelling on topics impacting Jewish Americans, including a rise in anti-Semitism, as well as features on individuals and events defining Jewish culture today. The CBS News Race & Culture Unit is leading the collaborative effort across the ViacomCBS network.
Eye On Culture: The Jewish Experience segments will continue to be featured on CBS News broadcasts and platforms, including CBS This Morning, the CBS Evening News With Norah O’Donnell, CBS Television Stations and CBSN, CBS News’ 24/7 streaming news service.
The Anti-Defamation League found that 2020 was a record year for anti-Semitic incidents in America; according to a recent Pew poll, 75% of Jewish Americans say there is more anti-semitism than there was five years ago. CBS News’ reporting is examining the rise of anti-semitism around the country and the world. CBS News will also profile notable people and events who are impacting Jewish culture.
Stories for the Eye On Culture: The Jewish Experience series began airing this month. CBS Sunday Morning aired a profile of Billy Crystal and Tiffany Haddish, who discussed her recent conversion to Judaism (watch here). 60 Minutes looked at the Ritchie Boys, the secret U.S. intelligence unit bolstered by German-born Jews that helped the Allies beat Hitler (watch here).
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times investigative journalist and CBS News contributor Jodi Kantor sat down with her 97-year-old Holocaust survivor grandmother for an intimate conversation about survival and anti-Semitism that aired on CBS This Morning (watch here).
CBS This Morning: Saturday profiled baker and author Claire Saffitz, who explored her Ashkenazi Jewish roots as part of her research for her new cookbook. Saffitz discovered that before emigrating to the United States, her great-grandfather also worked as a baker, which led her to include old family recipes for classic Jewish desserts in her new book (watch here).
For CBS Newspath, Michael George spoke with New York state senator Anna Kaplan, whose family fled Iran in 1979, afraid that a Holocaust could happen there, too. She is leading an effort to improve Holocaust education in schools, hoping a better understanding of history will lead to fewer incidents of anti-semitism.
Coming up, CBS News’ coverage for Eye On Culture: The Jewish Experience will include the following reports:
- CBS This Morning (7:00-9:00 AM) will include a report by CBS News correspondent Holly Williams on the increase of anti-Semitic incidents leading to a Jewish exodus in France.
- The CBS Evening News With Norah O’Donnell will examine what is behind a rising trend of anti-semitism in the U.S.
- Throughout the month, CBS News Digital will cover Jewish American Heritage Month with several interviews and segments that examine the state of various aspects of Jewish culture. CBSN, the 24/7 streaming news network, will investigate anti-semitism in the U.S., including reporting and analysis about online extremism, featuring CBS News technology and disinformation reporter Dan Patterson. CBSN is available at cbsnews.com and on the CBS News app for mobile and connected TV devices and the CBS News social channels.
- CBS News Radio will feature Jewish American Heritage Month stories at the top of the hour broadcasts as well as on the CBS World News Roundup. Steve Futterman looks at the rise in anti-semitism online as synagogues from the East Coast to the West Coast stream their services during the pandemic.
- On May 29, 48 Hours will air an encore of “In the Name of Hate.” The parents of Blaze Bernstein, a brilliant Ivy League student allegedly murdered because he was gay and Jewish, talked with 48 Hours in their first primetime interview about the loss of their son, the neo-Nazi hate group that may have fueled anger in his alleged killer, and what they’re doing to move forward. 48 Hours’ Tracy Smith sat down with Bernstein’s parents for this report that examines the murder of Bernstein and the investigation that led his high school classmate Sam Woodward to be charged with killing the University of Pennsylvania student. The broadcast also explores what influence a militant neo-Nazi hate group can have on a follower. The murder of Bernstein raises troubling questions concerning anti-Semitism and homophobia, issues that are at the heart of the nation’s current struggle to define itself. Woodward is expected to go on trial later this year. 48 Hours will be following that trial.
CBS Television Stations will offer the following coverage:
- WCBS in New York will deliver a profile of the New Rochelle Synagogue that was the first in New York to face COVID head-on. During the height of the pandemic, members faced hate and isolation but banded together to care for one another during a time of uncertainty.
- KCBS in Los Angeles offers an inside look at Hatzolah, a volunteer non-profit EMT group servicing Jewish neighborhoods; Hatzolah members are trained in emergency medicine and Jewish law with a unique understanding of the community’s needs.
- WBBM in Chicago reports on a unique, non-profit Jewish organization that promotes respectful, positive communication among people, especially those with differing viewpoints.
- KPIX in San Francisco reports on a Bay Area family who escaped the Nazis and was forced to give up their treasured art; it was eventually recovered but now family members are gifting it to San Francisco’s Legion of Honor.
- WBZ in Boston goes inside a high school to speak with students and teachers about curriculum changes on the Holocaust and genocide.
- KTVT in Dallas will look at a historic temple and how it pivoted during the pandemic while honoring family and tradition with the best kosher cuisine in North Texas.
- WCCO in Minneapolis will celebrate the Twin Cities’ Jewish heritage by gathering family stories and strolling through a cluster of cemeteries. The gravestones date back to the early 19th century and honor those who were among the first to settle in Minnesota. WCCO will report how the community has evolved over the years and where it thrives today.
- KCNC in Denver will examine why Colorado has one of the highest rates of anti-Semitism in the country and ranks fifth for the number of anti-Semitism incidents. During the pandemic, the hate has gone high tech; CBS 4’s Rick Sallinger reports how online temple services, funerals and Shivas have been invaded by hate groups.
- KOVR in Sacramento explores what it’s like to be Black, Jewish and an activist in a year of civil unrest. April Baskin started an umbrella group of 64 organizations encouraging people to take active, concrete steps to rectify some of the wrongs that have been done to people of color, including Jews of color. KOVR explores what it’s like to protest on behalf of two marginalized communities and facing racism on both sides.
- KDKA in Pittsburgh reports how the Squirrel Hill neighborhood is still coping with the tragic 2018 shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue that shattered the community. Hear from the Jewish Federation of Pittsburgh, members of the 10.27 Healing Project, and the president of the New Light Congregation about how to move forward beyond the hate.