This fall, we have been highlighting birthdays of well-known atheists and humanists with ties to Pittsburgh, including Andrew Carnegie, as many readers might not have known he was a freethinker.
This month, we highlight comedian Anthony Jeselnik who was born December 22, 1978 in Pittsburgh and grew up just 11 miles south of the city in Upper St. Clair, PA. After graduating from high school in 1997, he headed to New Orleans to attend Tulane University. From there, he ended up in New York City, landing a job as a writer for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, where his honed is comic persona.
He has continued his career with several specials, including “The Jeselnik Offensive” on Comedy Central, which aired for two seasons, and two comedy specials aired on Netflix – “Thoughts and Prayers” (2015) and “Fire in the Maternity Ward” (2019).
In 2018, he returned to Comedy Central with a deal that included a weekly podcast, “The Jeselnik & Rosenthal Vanity Project” featuring Gregg Rosenthal and Erica Tamposi of the NFL Network.
“I was raised Catholic. I rejected it later on. I’m an outspoken atheist now. People say, ‘Oh, it’s a negative thing to be an atheist.’ I don’t agree. I think it’s more optimistic to think that there is no God, no afterlife. I’m the only one in my family who feels this way.”
—Jeselnik, Parade magazine interview (July 2, 2013)
Thanks to ffrf.org for details about our Steel City notables!