Islamophobia At Its Best!

A ninth grader was arrested for bringing a home-made clock to school. Why? Because he is MUSLIM. His name is Ahmed Mohamed which apparently indicates that he belongs to no other religion but Islam. Now, If he was from a white origin, the picture probably would’ve been different. He would possibly win much applause by his teachers and classmates or at the least a pat in the back.  In this case, 14 year old Mohammed brought a home-made clock to show his engineering teacher at MacArthur High School in Irving, Texas. The teacher asked him to put it away and not show it to anyone else. Ahmed was confused, he only wanted to his impress his teacher rather he looked scared.
So, he kept the clock inside his school bag and while in English class, the alarm started beeping. Then, he brought up the clock to show his English teacher and she said, “it looks like a bomb.” Ahmed replies,” it doesn’t look like a bomb to me.” Then he was taken to the Principal’s office where police officers were present to ask him questions and search his belongings. School authorities and the police described it as a “hoax bomb.” Even though, Ahmed continued insisting that he was trying to make a clock, not a bomb, but no one paid attention. He was handcuffed and taken into a juvenile detention center where he was interrogated. And he could not call his parents until after the interrogation was over then, he was released to his parents. Ahmed’s father Mohamed Elhassan said, “He is a very smart, brilliant kid. He fixed my phone, car and computer.” He showed pride in his son and greatly impressed by his inventing skills.
After a follow-up investigation, it was concluded that the device was not harmful and it was mistaken for a bomb, but it’s just a home made experiment. This incident clearly portrays Islamophobia, the fear of Islam or the followers of Islam. Muslims are facing discrimination in the U.S. because of their religion. A ninth grader should be encouraged by the teachers for trying to invent something not handcuffed and interrogated by the police. It takes the good spirit away from the kid and also instill fear of being seized. A Muslim American too has all the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as other Americans despite his religious belief or skin color.
However, the aftermath of this incident were undoubtedly significant. Ahmed received outpouring support from the social media users and various communities. Ahmed’s news made it to the international headline. He received internship offers from Redditt and Twitter and also from Facebook. He even received an open invitation from the White House from Barrack Obama. Initially, Ahmed felt disheartened by the reaction that his invention evoked, but he was astonished by what has followed. He states, “It made me really happy to see all these people support me.”

Reference List:
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/northwest-dallas-county/headlines/20150915-irving-ninth-grader-arrested-after-taking-homemade-clock-to-school.ece
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/09/16/they-thought-it-was-a-bomb-ahmed-mohamed-texas-9th-grader-arrested-after-bringing-a-home-built-clock-to-school/
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/09/16/440820557/high-school-student-shows-off-homemade-clock-gets-handcuffed
http://www.cnn.com/2015/11/23/us/ahmed-mohamed-clock-letters-demand-apologies/

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