Former neo-Nazi who inspired ‘American History X’ character is now observant Jew following DNA test revealing ancestry

Mar 27, 2024 | Political News

Frank Meeink, once a notorious neo-Nazi whose story of profound transformation inspired the movie “American History X,” has now revealed that he is an observant Jew following a DNA test that revealed his ancestry.

Meeink's journey from hate to faith is a remarkable example of growth and is highlighted throughout the movie “American History X,” in which Edward Norton plays the former neo-Nazi. In his former life, Meeink espoused extremist views, believed Jews to be the “root of all evil,” led his own white supremacist group, and had a swastika tattoo on his neck. 

But the turning point came when Meeink found himself in prison and began to question his beliefs when he formed friendships with black inmates that challenged his prejudices. Meeink eventually turned away from his neo-Nazi beliefs, having his tattoos removed and deciding to attend meetings no longer. 

“Who are you to judge the world, you’re a f*cking criminal, a drunk,” Meeink recalled about the thoughts he had one day while on a walk. “That was the day I was like, ‘I’m done. I’m out.’” 

In a shocking turn of events, Meeink has now revealed to the New York Post that he has discovered he has Jewish ancestry. 

Meeink explained that he was prompted to take a 23andMe DNA test after a friend observed that he “looked Jewish.” After taking the test, Meeink discovered he has 2.4% Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry. 

“I just wanted to see if it was true, I wanted to see if it was real,” Meeink said.

“I found out by a beautiful gift from God that I was Jewish through DNA.”

While his Jewish ancestry is only a small percentage, for Meeink the revelation was a “beautiful gift from God.” It has prompted him to embrace his Jewish heritage wholeheartedly. 

Meeink has fully integrated Jewish practices into his life. He now prays three times a day, attends synagogue regularly, participates in Torah study classes three times a week, and observes kosher dietary laws.

“The thing I loved about Judaism is that it says, ‘Love the Lord your God.’ And that you don’t need to force your God on nobody else,” Meeink said. “I wanna try and build this relationship with God.”