Please before you look any further on this article look at the picture I posted above. This is the face of an innocent Muslim teenager, 14 years old, being arrested for making a clock. That is right, he made a clock. The clock was actually pretty advanced considering this young man is only 14 but it was just a clock. This alarm clock ended up going off in the middle of one class and of course the teacher thought it was a bomb. I mean, that makes sense right? In this post 9/11 world we fear Muslims because all of them must be bad. They all have a hidden agenda that they want America to blow up. Right? Sadly that is how a lot of people in this country think. So after being arrested, questioned, and then found innocent, Ahmed was suspended for three days. That’s right, he was suspended not the ignorant teacher who decided because of his skin tone and his background that he was planning on making a bomb.
Let me make one statement about this whole issue that happened. This young man, this smart young man was suspended because he used his brain. Instead of building a city in Minecraft he made a clock that was sophisticated enough to have an alarm. He sat there and tinkered around enough to make something that was beyond most teachers expectations. What happens to this young man? Well of course he gets accused of being a terrorist and suspended. Isn’t that what anyone would do?
I understand that in this day and age we are much more cautious than we used to be. I understand that there are certain things that will trigger fear in people. When people bring backpacks to sporting events now, since the Boston Marathon bombing we never look at that the same. The way you used to be able to leave luggage unattended but now if you do, it is immediately seized. Life has changed and unfortunately for Ahmed it has changed for the worst in some cases.
On Twitter there is a hashtag that says #IStandWithAhmed and that is an important thing to have trending. Ahmed’s life matters. He shouldn’t have to be ashamed of who he is because of the color of his skin or because of his heritage. He should be proud of who he is, and he should be proud of what he can do. Me personally? I could never make a clock, never mind a clock that has an alarm in it.
Luckily because of this teachers ignorance Ahmed’s story had been heard around the country. Everyone from Google to Barack Obama to Sophia Bush have tweeted in support of this young man. He has been offered internships with Google and Twitter because clearly this young man is brilliant. He is smart and loves to build things. He even said in an interview that he was proud of the clock he built and that was why he was carrying it around school.
It is important to remember that this young man, that did nothing wrong still was punished. Even though he didn’t make a bomb, when he was arrested he didn’t make a scene, he was still punished and suspended for three days.
Ahmed you are a brilliant young man and please do not let this ever stop you from building things. Ahmed go and change the world, even though some people can’t change their skewed view doesn’t mean you can’t follow your dream.