Muslim teen arrested for homemade clock gets White House invite

2015-09-17 12:51:33 | Al Muslim News
Muslim teen arrested for homemade clock gets White House invite
Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science, President Obama said on Twitter

 

A 14-years-old Muslim teen arrested after a Texas teacher mistook his homemade clock for a bomb won invitations to the White House, Google and Facebook on Sept.16 in a surge of public support.

President Barack Obama congratulated Ahmed Mohamed, 14, on his skills in a pointed rebuke to school and police officials -- who defended his arrest -- amid accusations of Islamophobia.          

"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 said on Twitter, Hurriyat News reported.
       
A photo of Mohamed standing in handcuffs while wearing a t-shirt with the US space agency NASA's logo was retweeted thousands of times in a matter of hours and "#IStandWithAhmed" became the top trending hashtag on Twitter.
       
Mohamed told the Dallas Morning News he hoped to impress teachers by bringing the clock to school on Monday.
                       
"My hobby is to invent stuff," the teen said in a video posted on the paper's website, filmed in his electronics-filled bedroom.
       
"I made a clock. It was really easy. I wanted to show something small at first... they took it wrong so I was arrested for a hoax bomb."        

The son of Sudanese immigrants who live in a Dallas suburb, Mohamed loved robotics club in middle school and was hoping to find something similar at MacArthur High School. He did not get the reaction he hoped for when he showed the clock to his engineering teacher.
       
"He was like, 'That's really nice,'" Mohamed said. "'I would advise you not to show any other teachers.'"        

When the clock's alarm went off in another class, the teacher told him it looked like a bomb and confiscated it. The school called police and Mohamed was taken away in cuffs amid suspicion he intended to frighten people with the device.
                       
Police said on Sept.16 they have determined that Mohamed had no malicious intent and it was "just a naive set of circumstances."        

Irving police chief Larry Boyd insisted that Mohamed's ethnicity had nothing to do with the response.
       
"Our reaction would have been the same either way. That's a very suspicious device," Boyd told reporters.
       
"We live in an age where you can't take things like that to school."        

"My son is a very brilliant boy," Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed -- who has run for president in Sudan -- told CNN.
                       
White House spokesman Josh Earnest called the incident an opportunity to "search our own conscious for biases that might be there."        

"At least some of Ahmed's teachers failed him," he said, adding that "this has the potential to be a teachable moment."        

The Council on American-Islamic Relations said the heavy-handed response was suspicious given the political climate in Irving -- where mayor Beth Van Duyne has claimed that Muslims are plotting to impose Sharia law -- and across the nation.
       
"Clearly we believe it's the result of the rising level of anti-Muslim sentiment in our society," CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper told AFP.
       
"It's clear that if it was some student who wasn't named Ahmed Mohamed and didn't have brown skin, he would not have been forced to do a perp walk in front of his fellow students in handcuffs."  

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg told Mohamed to "keep building," saying: "I'd love to meet you."                        
Zuckerberg may have to wait.
       
Along with the invitation to astronomy night at the White House next month, Mohamed also got invitations to drive NASA's Opportunity rover, tour MIT, intern at Twitter and visit Google.
       
"Hey Ahmed- we're saving a seat for you at this weekend's Google Science Fair...want to come? Bring your clock!" the online giant tweeted.
       
Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield invited Mohamed to his science variety show, and the Four Seasons hotel responded with an offer of a free room in Toronto.
       
Mohamed's family launched a Twitter account to thank his supporters using @IStandWithAhmed as his handle.
       
"Thank you fellow supporters. We can band together to stop this racial inequality and prevent this from happening again," read a tweet that included a photo of the smiling boy in his NASA t-shirt holding two fingers up in the sign of victory.
       
The hashtag #IStandWithAhmed had been tweeted more than 800,000 times by Sept.16 afternoon, according to analytics site Topsy.com.

.

Tags: #

Latest News

What to Next

Samsung facing growing threats despite record profits

SEOUL (South Korea): Sprawling South Korean conglomerate Samsung Electronics has recovered from a humiliating recall fiasco and the arrest of its de f... More

Iranian Pilgrims Return To Hajj After 2016 Boycott

BEIRUT: Nearly 90,000 Iranians are expected to perform the Haj in Makkah this year after Tehran boycotted the pilgrimage last year amid tensions with ... More

Israel reopens Al Aqsa mosque, but Palestinians refuse to enter

JERUSALEM: Israel reopened an ultra-sensitive holy site on Sunday closed after an attack that killed two policemen, but Muslim worshippers were refusi... More

At Least 60 dead in 'US-Air strike' in Syria's al-Mayadeen

A suspected US-led coalition air raid on an ISIL-run prison in eastern Syria has killed at least 57 people, according to a monitoring group.  ... More

Kuwait launches online platform to educate migrant workers

Kuwait: Kuwait has launched an online platform in five languages Arabic, English, Hindi, Filipino and Urdu to educate foreigner workers on their legal... More

India forces martyr two more Kashmiri youth in IoK

SRINAGAR: Indian security forces, in their recent act of state act of terrorism, martyred 2 additional geographic areai youth in Kupwara district of o... More

Saudi Arabia Suddenly Has a New Crown Prince

King Salman removed his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef, as crown prince. And he appointed his son to take on the position instead.... More

Turkey awards Pakistan Arm Chief Gen Bajwa Legion of Merit for his services

ANKARA: Chief of the military staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa arrived here on Tuesday on an officer visit. The COAS visited the solon burial ch... More

Israel starts work on new settlement amid US peace push

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin announced the start of work Tuesday on a new settlement in the occupied West Bank as US envoys prepared to ... More

Syria army, opposition confirm nationwide truce

Syria's army said Thursday it would halt all military operations from midnight, under a deal brokered by Russia and Turkey, with the opposition Na... More

25