16-year old Ranan Steiger goes to the Fuchs Mizrahi School in Cleveland. He likes the Cleveland Cavaliers and Pokemon Go.
And he likes to make idiots out of the antisemitic protesters at the Republican National Convention
As the Buffalo News reports,
At 5 o’clock, five members of the Westboro Baptist Church – a small and well-known hate group – took the stage. During their half-hour time slot, Ranan said, one of the Westboro speakers saw his kippah and said, “You’re going to hell. You’re a Jew. You’re going to hell!”
Ranan then took the hand of a Muslim woman and they together raised their arms into the air.
“We said, ‘There’s bad people everywhere. There’s bad Jews. There’s bad blacks. There’s bad Muslims. There’s bad Asians. There’s bad everybody,’ ” Ranan said. “There’s bad people in every single religion, every single ethnicity. There are some people that are bad. But you have to look at the positive. That’s all I want. I want peace.”
A half-hour later, Westboro’s time was up. But behind the stage, there was another small group of men carrying signs with similarly hateful messages. The leader of the group, a man of about 40 with a salt-and-pepper buzz and beard, was speaking into a headset microphone attached to a speaker wrapped in camouflage.
As Ranan heard the words, he walked up to the man and started staring him down. He held up the sign, and as the man kept talking – including comments on Judaism – Ranan started yelling back: “I don’t care. Go away! Lose your voice! Lose your voice!”
And later: “Go back to your mother’s basement!”
Ranan was loud, but his voice isn’t deep or gravely. He sounds and looks slightly younger than his 16 years. A pair of young women approached Ranan, almost protectively. One of them asked, “Can you come here for a second?”
He shook his head. “I have to do this.”
Minutes later, a man and woman passed by behind the protesters Ranan was facing. The couple held signs that read “No bigotry. No racism. No sexism. No Trump” and “Trump is a Egomaniacal Opportunist Who Does Not Deserve to Be President.”
Ranan’s eyes widened and he beckoned the couple. “Over here!” he said. “Come teach them a lesson.”
It wasn’t working, so he repeated himself: “Teach them a lesson. Teach them a lesson!”
The man finally walked over and told Ranan, “Ignore them!”
Ranan wasn’t having it. “They’re idiots, though!” he said.
The man told him again: Walk away.
Ranan stayed. “Somebody has to do it!” he said.
And so he did. And will again. Afterward Ranan told me, “Tomorrow, I’ll 100 percent be back.”
This kid reminds me of the very first Hasby Award runner-up, 16 year old Elad Daniel Peleg, who confronted an anti-Israel crowd in Los Angeles with an IDF T-shirt and Israeli flag.
(h/t Jewish Insider)
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