Jay Leno on Support of Israel: ‘I Don’t Like to See People Get Picked On’
JNS.org – Television icon and comedian Jay Leno talked about his avid support for Israel and the Jewish people during the StandWithUs “Festival of Lights” virtual gala on Sunday night.
“My dad said you always want to be proud of who you are, and that’s why I like Jews. They’re proud of who they are,” the former host of “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” told Jewish comedian Elon Gold in a pre-recorded message that aired during the live Hanukkah event.
“Here they are, this little country surrounded by people who literally hate them, and the fact that [these] people are proud of who they are and they stick together—that’s what I like. I like seeing people who are proud of who they are because if you don’t have pride in yourself, you’re not gonna get anywhere,” he added. “So, for me, I like that sort of Jewish pride.”
Speaking to Gold from his garage, where he touts an extensive car collection, Leno shared stories about his relationship with the Jewish community. He reminisced about being a “Shabbos goy” for his neighbors when he was a kid growing up in New York and one of his first comedic gigs performing for Orthodox Jews at a bungalow colony in the Catskill Mountains.