9th Grader Arrested for Bringing Homemade Clock to School

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Ahmed Mohamed — who makes his own radios and repairs his own go-kart — hoped to impress his teachers when he brought a homemade clock to MacArthur High on Monday.

Instead, the school phoned police about Ahmed’s circuit-stuffed pencil case.

So the 14-year-old missed the student council meeting and took a trip in handcuffs to juvenile detention. His clock now sits in an evidence room. Police say they may yet charge him with making a hoax bomb — though they acknowledge he told everyone who would listen that it’s a clock.
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/northwest-dallas-county/headlines/20150915-irving-9th-grader-arrested-after-taking-homemade-clock-to-school.ece?hootPostID=532c3696eb235a3f481ed45f733e6d90 [Broken]

Of course, this comes from a city, Irving, TX, with a mayor who has been an outspoken critic of Islam.

The worst quote comes at the end of the article
He’s vowed never to take an invention to school again.
It's official: the terrorists have won.
 
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  • #2
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Idiocracy :< The kid did nothing wrong, but gets labeled for being of certain complexion. This is...bs -.-
 
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  • #3
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I used to tinker with electronics and would bring them to school too to work on them. It's sad that you can only do that if you're white. I thought the vow never to do that again was heartbreaking too, another potential genius shot down by american education. Something kinda cool that came out of it though, because he was wearing a NASA shirt when he was arrested, researchers from JPL apparently invited him for a tour.
 
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  • #4
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Rather, he said, officers determined it was "a hoax bomb" and a "naive accident."
The nerve!!

He's wearing a NASA shirt!!

CPAFMKrUkAABI2a.jpg
 
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  • #5
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I thought at first the title said he brought a home made glock to school, and was about to question what the uproar was about.

I used to tinker with electronics and would bring them to school too to work on them. It's sad that you can only do that if you're white. I thought the vow never to do that again was heartbreaking too, another potential genius shot down by american education. Something kinda cool that came out of it though, because he was wearing a NASA shirt when he was arrested, researchers from JPL apparently invited him for a tour.
Texans have a very special brand of stupidity. I don't think you'd find a story like this in other parts of the country.

http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/northwest-dallas-county/headlines/20150915-irving-9th-grader-arrested-after-taking-homemade-clock-to-school.ece?hootPostID=532c3696eb235a3f481ed45f733e6d90 [Broken]

Of course, this comes from a city, Irving, TX, with a mayor who has been an outspoken critic of Islam.

The worst quote comes at the end of the article


It's official: the terrorists have won.
There's nothing wrong with being an outspoken critic of Islam. I am an outspoken critic of Islam, and Christianity. The only problem is when you turn disdain for religion into prejudice against people.
 
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  • #6
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<Snip>



There's nothing wrong with being an outspoken critic of Islam. I am an outspoken critic of Islam, and Christianity. The only problem is when you turn disdain for religion into prejudice against people.
It is wrong when you are a public figure and some of your constituents are Muslim. Similar issue with this Davis woman who did not want to grant the marriage licenses on the grounds that doing so violated her religious tenets. Go practice your personal beliefs on your personal time; while you are a government employee, you must follow the law. While a private citizen, of course you may criticize whomever you want as long as you don't do it in a way that incites violence, I would say.
 
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  • #7
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It is wrong when you are a public figure and some of your constituents are Muslim. Similar issue with this Davis woman who did not want to grant the marriage licenses on the grounds that doing so violated her religious tenets. Go practice your personal beliefs on your personal time; while you are a government employee, you must follow the law. While a private citizen, of course you may criticize whomever you want as long as you don't do it in a way that incites violence, I would say.
No. How is being a critic of something the same thing as forcing your beliefs on people? There's nothing in the law that says government officials have to respect your personal beliefs - they only have to respect the law. If people take issue with a politicians opinion about some social or religious issue, they are free to vote against that person. And wouldn't you prefer people expose their opinions, good or bad, rather than keep them secret and let them silently impact their policy decisions?
 
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  • #8
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No. How is being a critic of something the same thing as forcing your beliefs on people? There's nothing in the law that says government officials have to respect your personal beliefs - they only have to respect the law. If people take issue with a politicians opinion about some social or religious issue, they are free to vote against that person. And wouldn't you prefer people expose their opinions, good or bad, rather than keep them secret and let them silently impact their policy decisions?
I never said that this is equivalent to forcing your beliefs on people. But I think this is a particularly -delicate area, since you should not show show favoritism of one group over another when you exercise power over them; this is ethically troublesome, I would say. I think if you so deeply dislike some of your constituents, you should recuse yourself from running. Other than that, I have no problem with any other type of belief being expressed.
 
  • #9
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Ahmed invited to the White House. Great recovery Mr. President!

"Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House?," @POTUS tweeted. "We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It's what makes America great."
 
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  • #10
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http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/northwest-dallas-county/headlines/20150915-irving-9th-grader-arrested-after-taking-homemade-clock-to-school.ece?hootPostID=532c3696eb235a3f481ed45f733e6d90 [Broken]

Of course, this comes from a city, Irving, TX, with a mayor who has been an outspoken critic of Islam.

The worst quote comes at the end of the article


It's official: the terrorists have won.
I mean seriously, the physic teacher was not able to differentiate a bomb from a clock.
This is how you create terrorism. This kid did nothing wrong.
 
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  • #11
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I mean seriously, the physic teacher was not able to differentiate a bomb from a clock.
This is how you create terrorism. This kid did nothing wrong.
Besides, if the kid actually wanted to create a bomb, would he have brought it to school and shown it to everyone?
 
  • #13
OmCheeto
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...Texans have a very special brand of stupidity.
Hey! @Drakkith is from Texas! And I'm pretty sure @Evo lived there for a while......

I don't think you'd find a story like this in other parts of the country.
....
Digging deeper into the story, it seems there is more to it than just brains, bigotry, and innocence:



clock.or.ticking.bomb.jpg

"...packed up the wirey mess in a pencil case to show his engineering teacher..."​

Reminds me a bit of a line from "Men in Black":
This kid has a "beeping" "pencil case" that looks way more like a suitcase.
He's an engineering child, and should not have any interest in colored pencils.
I would have been suspicious too.

Ahmed Mohamed, 14, arrested over clock mistaken for bomb
He said his engineering teacher had congratulated him but advised him "not to show any other teachers".
The teenager said another teacher became aware of it when the device beeped during the lesson.
"She was like - it looks like a bomb," he said.

 
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  • #14
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Besides, if the kid actually wanted to create a bomb, would he have brought it to school and shown it to everyone?
Yeah, logics!!!
 
  • #15
donpacino
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I mean seriously, the physic teacher was not able to differentiate a bomb from a clock.
This is how you create terrorism. This kid did nothing wrong.
Apparently the engineering teacher new it was a clock and cautioned the student against sharing it with others...
it was the English teacher that took the clock and 'turned him in'
 
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  • #16
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Wow, that is disgusting. Charge him with making a hoax bomb?! Grief.
 
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  • #17
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“He just wants to invent good things for mankind,” said Ahmed’s father, Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed, who immigrated from Sudan and occasionally returns there to run for president.

His father just casually returns to his home country to run for president.....
 
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  • #18
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Idiocracy :< The kid did nothing wrong, but gets labeled for being of certain complexion. This is...bs -.-
Um... Well possibly it was a black clock. But the cop in the photo is at least as "certain complexion" as the kid. So I'm doubting it.

So you bring something to school that, to an English teacher, looks like a bomb. It's a bag of wires with a digital timer dial on it. And it's in your bag in English class and it beeps. Are you trying to impress your shop teacher with your ability at electronics? Or are you trying to create a fuss? Or are you just a grossly unwise doofus who has no idea what is appropriate in a classroom. That's a tough call from a fragmentary news article full of references to CAIR.

So if we are so careful not to be biased: Imagine this is a little white Christian sprog and the exact thing happened to him. Word for word, stroke for stroke. Are you equally as exercised? Does the POTUS send him an invitation to the White House? Hmm...
 
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  • #19
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It is wrong when you are a public figure and some of your constituents are Muslim. Similar issue with this Davis woman who did not want to grant the marriage licenses on the grounds that doing so violated her religious tenets. Go practice your personal beliefs on your personal time; while you are a government employee, you must follow the law. While a private citizen, of course you may criticize whomever you want as long as you don't do it in a way that incites violence, I would say.
Actually, we have long since disposed of this position. "Just following orders" is not a defense. One hopes that a public official will refuse to do things he or she believes to be evil even if their job requires it. And in the case you refer to, there is a reasonable mechanism that the local government can recall the official if they find this refusal unacceptable.
 
  • #20
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I would have been suspicious too.
Certainly hindsight is 20-20, and so this story looks like something from the Tales of the Bizarre.

Considering what has gone on in past years, erroring on the side of security seems to be the more prudent action.
If it had been really an explosive device, homemade, the alternate story would have questioning the teacher for not alerting authorities.
I don't really see any evidence of racial profiling at all on the part of teachers or police.
The times we live in.

Anyways, if he is to bring his clock to the White House, I suppose the president's men will just wave him on through without checking the clock package. NOT!
 
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  • #21
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I wonder how frequent bomb threats and similar scares are at schools. Hmm... They seem to be pretty frequent. These are all in the last few days.

http://www.wfmj.com/story/29978224/second-threat-at-niles-schools-brings-book-bag-ban
http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2015...ating-school-bomb-threat-in-armstrong-county/
http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/porter/bomb-threat-at-fegely-middle-school-deemed-unfounded/article_b377e731-9e71-5dec-bed6-28059350103d.html [Broken]
http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/pupils-staff-three-scottish-schools-6453837
http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2015/09/false_bomb_threat_reported_at.html
http://www.northlandsnewscenter.com/news/local/Bomb-threat-prompts-evacuation-of-UW-Superior-and-Superior-High-School-327913271.html [Broken]

Is there a reason for officials to be concerned about a bag of wires with a digital timer on it? Maybe I'm glad I'm in STEM and not law enforcement.
 
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  • #22
OmCheeto
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I built a clock, 40 years ago, for shop class. That would have made me about Ahmed's age.
It consisted of a 555 timer, and some peripheral components.
This kids clock, was way too complicated.

I'm calling "14 year old shenanigans".
 
  • #23
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Personally, I think that the reaction by the police etc was good. They are not demolitions experts and trained to distinguish harmless devices from dangerous devices. If it were my kids school I would prefer they arrest and evacuate as a first response and then have an expert evaluate the device only after the kids are clear.

If your son or daughter's life was on the line would you want an English teacher doing circuit analysis?

IMO, the person who acted incorrectly was the Engineering teacher. They should not have told the student to conceal the clock. They should have taken the clock to the principal and explained that it was harmless directly.
 
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  • #24
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If it were my kids school I would prefer they arrest and evacuate as a first response and then have an expert evaluate the device only after the kids are clear.
Let's make it a different question. What if it were your kid?
 
  • #25
OmCheeto
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Personally, I think that the reaction by the police etc was good. They are not demolitions experts and trained to distinguish harmless devices from dangerous devices. If it were my kids school I would prefer they arrest and evacuate as a first response and then have an expert evaluate the device only after the kids are clear.

If your son or daughter's life was on the line would you want an English teacher doing circuit analysis?

IMO, the person who acted incorrectly was the Engineering teacher. They should not have told the student to conceal the clock. They should have taken the clock to the principal and explained that it was harmless directly.
Hindsight is always 20/20.

This thread reminds me a bit of watching a young, second generation Iranian-American PFer, building rockets as a hobby, down in southern California.

Om's thoughts said:
Cyrus! Stop that! You're just asking for it!
 

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