14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed has a bright future as a scientist of tomorrow. But until yesterday his high school in Irving, Texas, merely thought of him as "That Muslim Kid" or "Who?"
Now they won't ever forget his name. And they'll never live down what they did to him.
See, this smart kid made a clock and took it to school. Some hysterical and stupid teacher thought it was a BOMB. However, no bomb squad was ever called, and the school wasn't evacuated. But the principal and police still interrogated this boy without his parents beside him for two hours. Over a clock that wasn't a bomb.
By the middle of the day, the obviously frightened child in a NASA t-shirt was handcuffed, arrested, and taken to jail. For being smart. And Muslim. And unfortunately for Irving, Texas, what they did there infuriated most of the known world as the hashtag #IStandWithAhmed trended for 24 hours. Now he has been invited to the White House, NASA, MIT, Harvard, Twitter, Facebook - you name it! Ahmed's story has a totally happy ending. Irving, Texas, not so much.
From the New York Times
HOUSTON — Ahmed Mohamed’s homemade alarm clock got him suspended from his suburban Dallas high school and detained and handcuffed by police officers on Monday after school officials accused him of making a fake bomb. By Wednesday, it had brought him an invitation to the White House, support from Hillary Rodham Clinton and Mark Zuckerberg, and a moment of head-spinning attention as questions arose whether he had been targeted because of his name and his religion.
. . . The thing in question was the product of Ahmed’s love of invention. He made the clock out of a metal briefcase-style box, a digital display, wires and a circuit board. It was bigger and bulkier than a typical bedside clock, with cords, screws and electrical components.
He said he took it to school on Monday to show an engineering teacher, who said it was nice but then told him he should not show the invention to other teachers. Later, Ahmed’s clock beeped during an English class, and after he revealed the device to the teacher, school officials notified the police, and Ahmed was interrogated by officers.
“She thought it was a threat to her,” Ahmed told reporters Wednesday. “So it was really sad that she took a wrong impression of it.”
Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It's what makes America great.— President Obama (@POTUS) September 16, 2015
#IStandWithAhmed because, among other reasons, I remember what it was like to be a smart kid surrounded by stupid teachers.— Madeline Ashby (@MadelineAshby) September 16, 2015
If Ahmed made a poem, it would be subversive. If he made art, it would be inciteful. He made science and it was a threat. That's racism.— SarcasticRover (@SarcasticRover) September 16, 2015