i'm going to go completely opposite of the folks here. i'd recommend a non-slr for your first camera. i'd go with a near slr. this is a camera with many of the features of an slr but has a fixed lens (in most cases). so, no interchangeable lenses on these. but, a number of these have almost all the other features of a decent slr, including manual settings for almost everything. they also tend to have very high optical zoom ratings, like 20x optical and better, some even going to 36x these days.
if you're new to photography, an slr can be a big investment, costing thousands as you buy more and more equipment. so, maybe tomorrow you decide you'd rather stay with retouching. you've spent a couple thousand just to get started with an slr. with a near slr you spend a few hundred and get to practice, practice, practice without all the expense and trouble of lugging a lot of expensive equipment around.
the drawback is quality. slr's are better, no question. i look at what gary does with his Nikon D3 and compare it to my near slr and there's no contest. he wins every time. but, i come close and what i cant get out of the camera, i can often get out of photoshop
a near slr is a way to learn without killing your bankroll and mortgaging your house. kodak, sony, nikon and i'm sure others make some very nice near slr's at under $500. you'd pay that much just for a modest slr body. my little z981 kodak takes closeups so close i can almost touch the subject with the camera body and still be in focus and yet it also has a 26x optical zoom which is somewhere around the equivalent of a 640mm telephoto lens. i have manual focus, manual aperture, manual iso, manual just about everything with this one device. i can take a 3 picture panorama shot and stitch it together WITHIN the camera and then download it. it has a popup flash built in, shutter timer, auto-everything if i want it that way, bracketing with adjustable exposure values, and many other features.
so, dont sell these little things short. they arent slr's, but they are pretty darn good for the money and very easy to learn and use. i carry mine on my belt everywhere i go. i have a 16 gig sd card within which allows me to take over 3000 shots before i ever have to download them and i carry two extra sets of batterys, also within the pack on my belt.
anyways, if you're truly in love with the d7000, go for it, but do take a look at the near slr's, if only to convince yourself that the d7000 really is what you want. it cant hoit to look