Jon Leibowitz, Stop Hiding Your Real Name

Daily Show host Stewart a proud Jew ... just not proud enough
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 24, 2009 12:44 PM CDT
Jon Stewart is seen in this 1999 photo after being hired as host of "The Daily Show."   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Michael Jackson’s transformation from black to white makes Ron Rosenbaum of Slate think of Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz—the guy you may know as Jon Stewart. Just as Jackson was probably responding to racism that’s now much less prevalent, the Daily Show host’s stage name “is just so 20th-century, a relic of that dark age” when quiet anti-Semitism moved Jews in show biz to change their names.

That's why Stewart ought to change his name back, Rosenbaum argues. It’s not as though Stewart’s shy about his background—he once called himself “Jewy Von Jewstein.” By changing it, he could empower a new generation of Hollywood Jews. The Daily Show is all about mocking pretension and hypocrisy. Politicians come on to brave the "Jon Stewart authenticity test." Right now, Stewart's own name doesn't completely pass that test.
(Read more Jon Stewart stories.)