WASHINGTON, D.C. (Sept. 16, 2015) — On Monday, Sept. 14, Ahmed Mohamed, 14, was arrested and suspended from his school in Irving, Texas for bringing a clock that he built himself into school.
According to reports, teachers and police accused Mohamed of instead making a bomb. Mohamed is currently serving a three-day suspension. The Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27), released the following statement:
“Ahmed and his talents have become victims of a culture of suspicion that we must extinguish. We must be better than to treat school children as terrorists. Ahmed’s suspension should be lifted, he should be brought back to school where he belongs, and his teachers and principal must apologize. Our future is bleak if we allow prejudice to become more important than the education of our children When we speak of supporting our next generation, that means all children regardless of your skin color or what religion you practice.
“This incident is an extremely disturbing and inappropriate response to an innocent act — a creative kid who built his own clock and brought it to school. Ahmed demonstrated the kind of ambition, creativity, and intelligence we strive to see in all of our students. But, faculty and administrators at MacArthur High School criminalized his actions because of the blatant racism and profiling of an American Muslim high school student. Now, because of these racist and mistrustful responses from authority figures, students like Ahmed may be too afraid to engage and further express their creativity at school. This right here is where racial profiling and Islamophobic rhetoric lead us. What a tragedy.”
The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994.