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Bombtastic Allegations Against a 14 Year Old’s Homemade Clock

On September 15th, 2015, 14-year old Ahmed Mohamed was arrested. On what basis? For bringing a homemade clock to school that officials thought to be a bomb.

Ahmed brought a clock he had made from home to MacArthur High School in Irving, Texas with the intentions of showing it to his teacher. The clock consisted of a circuit board that was hooked up to a digital display using various wires.

Another teacher became aware of the clock in Ahmed’s possession and thought it resembled a bomb. Following that, Ahmed was taken out of class, questioned by teachers and police officers alike before being placed into juvenile detention. The teenager was handcuffed and fingerprinted; no charges were pressed against him, but Ahmed was still suspended from school for three days.   

Following this event, Ahmed has been acknowledged with numerous shows of support from many people including Hillary Clinton, NASA, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg, and even President Obama himself. An outpour of support also flooded in from social media, all using the hashtag #IStandWithAhmed which started trending on Twitter.

Nonetheless, despite the show of solidarity, this event has caused the teenager stress and turmoil, and understandably so. Ahmed’s parents have decided to withdraw him as well as his siblings from the high school. It is unclear where Ahmed will continue his education although a number of other institutions have stepped forward with enrolment offers for the teenager.

As of right now, Ahmed and his family plan to go to New York on Wednesday, September 23rd to meet with United Nations dignitaries. Ahmed’s father, Mohamed El-Hassan Mohamed, has also expressed interest in taking his son on a pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia afterwards. Ahmed plans on taking up President Obama’s offer to visit the White House and arrangements are underway to see this through.

Some people may protest that there are many other brilliant young minds out there achieving incredible things who don’t get the same amount recognition and attention for their efforts that Ahmed has, and all the commotion is excessive. While that has the potential to be true, it should not, by any means, undermine the idea that innovation and creativity in youth should be cultivated. Perhaps the most holistic perspective with which to view this case is one that sees Ahmed as being a representative of young innovators everywhere whose talent deserves proper recognition and adequate space to flourish.

 

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An undergraduate student in her final year of study at the University of Ottawa, Melissa Poon is studying English and French as a Second Language with the hopes of working in publishing in the future. She has a passion for storytelling and finds it supremely fulfilling to bring the stories of others to life with a selection of choice words, a dash of character, and a touch of light humour. 
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