When Keeping It Red Goes Wrong

Oh, to be young, dumb, and tagged with 18 felonies again.

What? Why the accusative look, judgey reader? You never caught life-ruining charges from a slight youthful indiscretion, like threatening to bullet-spray an elected official’s entire family, spouse and sprouts? Well excuse me for living.

Riddhi Patel wasn’t about to excuse her local city council for living without first condemning Israel’s ongoing assault on Hamas. The “Kern County activist,” as the Los Angeles Times dully describes her, isn’t your average Twitter tankie. She’s a real, in-the-streets agitator aggressively agitating against all the oppressive forces keeping down the downtrodden. She’s doing as every untenured college prof taught her since her first undergrad bio class, for which she’s still paying off a five-figure loan for: be the change you want to see in the world!

And what’s the youthful, wide-eyed, inspiring change she wishes to be and see? Death delivered door-to-door, more personal and efficient than Amazon Prime.

Or at least that’s what she promised to the Bakersfield City Council. “We’ll see you at your house. We’ll murder you,” she mic-dropped before the body. And this was after she channeled Madame Defarge, vowing to “bring the guillotine.” What’s a leftist rant without a tumbril anyway? All cap, to borrow Patel’s gen lingo.

For daring to add a little flair to her performative indignation, Ms. Patel now gets to unperformatively sit in a cell. Poor, poor, confused Riddhi. Did none of her university preceptors tell her that violent ideations are best kept to yourself or hidden in theory-laden white papers? Gen Z can’t help but be impulsively confessional.

Patel is charged with 18 felonies for her murderous monologue—far shy of Donald Trump’s 90-odd charges, but not too shabby. She also faces a $1 million bond, which, again, doesn’t come close to matching Trump’s $175 million bail tab. Patel can take pride in earning terrorist charges to her rap sheet. No slouch in activism, she!

Too bad Patel apparently regrets it all, if tears count as remorse. Our would-be justice warrior openly wept rivulets when sentenced. In her sobbing distraught, she may have forgotten the second causal half of her peers’ dominating ethic: FAFO.

How did a seemingly harmless mouthy lib, who doesn’t appear tall enough to ride the suspended coasters at your local Six Flags, rack up felonies like a Guantanamo Bay internee? Might her charges be a bit overblown in what Kyle Smith calls our “age of angry ferment”? Isn’t she just another victim of the woke virus mind?

Patel may be twenty-eight, but in our age of arrested development, she believes that it’s fine, noble even, to act eight, throwing a hotspur fit before actual adults (read: people with power). It’s the from-the-mouth-of-babes virtue, except she’s a decade removed from draft eligibility. During her minatory remarks, she rehearsed and replayed the type of toddler tantrum she probably threw as a backfisch, replete with unmeant insults like “I hate you!” and “you’re soooo mean!”.

It’s not so much the murder-vows Patel made to her elected city council folk, but the way she uttered them, as if they were dramatic toppers to an otherwise extemporaneous tirade.

Of course, I don’t know if Patel’s comments were scripted out beforehand. She was exhorting the Council to pass a ceasefire resolution for a war being fought in another country, over issues wholly unrelated to California’s balmy vicissitudes, based on an ancient blood feud that’s been philosophized into an abstract colonizer/colonized dichotomy, then dumbed down into TikTok friendly bullet points with chantable slogans.

For a Hamasnik appalled by Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, Patel didn’t pronounce her death threats with any sort of righteous anger. “I don’t have faith that you’ll do this, you guys are all horrible human beings and Jesus probably would have killed you himself,” she coolly told the Council, waving her head back-and-forth as if lecturing a child. She raised her voice an octave when she out-loud hoped someone would lug out the neck-lopper and kill “all of you mother****”. Then, for her perorative pièce de résistance, she actually toned down her grad-school hector when pledging that “[w]e’ll see you at your house. We’ll murder you.”

The entire declamation had the quality of a junior-high production of an abridged “Hamlet.” No wonder Patel burst out in tears upon being charged with more felonies than your average Jan 6er. Like the felonious former president, she expected to be taken seriously, not literally. The demonstration was supposed to be woke kayfabe. “Young progressives,” Matt Yglesias observed, have been taught “catastrophizing is a good way to get what you want.” They took one too many theater extracurriculars and internalized the flawed idea that with enough passion, enough fury, enough emotion, enough wanting, and with an added touch of grandeur, they can achieve anything their innocent little heart desires.

That’s not true, as we reality-endorsers understand. To paraphrase Auden, shrieking maniacally makes nothing happen.

But throw in a few Gavrilo Princip promises? Then it’s straight to the can, do not pass mommy’s basement, do not collect two-hundred Frantz Fanon tracts. How’s that for manifesting a revolution?

And for what? A ceasefire resolution? Why Riddhi, it profits a womyn nothing to give her soul for the whole world… but for a ceasefire resolution!

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Free the People publishes opinion-based articles from contributing writers. The opinions and ideas expressed do not always reflect the opinions and ideas that Free the People endorses. We believe in free speech, and in providing a platform for open dialog. Feel free to leave a comment!

Taylor Lewis

Taylor Lewis writes from Virginia.

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