9th grade student Ahmed Mohamed's arrest for bringing a homemade clock to school has enflamed the internet, and with good reason. It is outrageous that Ahmed's interest in science and robotics landed him in a juvenile detention facility.
The only possible explanation for the behavior of both the school and the police department is that he was profiled for his name, race and his family's faith. When Ahmed was pulled out of class by the principal, a police officer who had never met Ahmed reportedly said, "Yup. That’s who I thought it was."
While the police have dropped any charges, they still maintain that they were correct to respond as they did, and that Ahmed's "hoax bomb" was the problem, not their Islamophobic reaction.
The school district and police department's leadership must apologize to Ahmed, his family and the Muslim community immediately. Beyond this obvious step, they must expunge this horrible event from Ahmed's record, and commit school and police leadership to racism and sensitivity training to address their demonstrated biases.
Irving has a troubling pattern of strained relations with the Muslim community - Mayor Beth Van Duyne has accused Muslims in Irving of "bypassing American courts" and the City Council has voted to support legislation that the Muslim community claims is anti-Muslim.
This outrageous event only underscores that Irving leaders must do far more to create an inclusive community free from profiling and discrimination. To start, they must apologize to Ahmed, his family, and the Muslim community, and ensure this event is expunged from this promising student's record.
Once that occurs, school and police officials must undertake race and sensitivity training to address their clear biases.
Read more about this developing story.
The outrageous actions surrounding 9th grader Ahmed Mohamed reflect horribly on your school and police leadership. You must apologize to Ahmed, his family and the Muslim community immediately. Beyond this obvious step, you must expunge this horrible event from Ahmed's record, and commit school and police leadership to racism and sensitivity training to address your clear biases.