Not long ago, 14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed was proud of the clock that he built at home. He was so proud of it, that he wanted to show his teachers and impress them. But it ended with him being arrested, in what police initially thought may have been an explosive device.
In a turn of events, Ahmed was invited to The White House to meet President Obama, Google, Twitter, Facebook, Autodesk, Wired, and several other companies that are encouraging him to keep his passion for innovation alive.
I love the outcome of this story, both as a mom and a human being. I’m so excited for Ahmed’s parents to be able to brag about how proud they are of their boy – he’s a smart cookie. I’m even happier for mom (because you know, we moms love to brag about how much more special our kids are than everyone else’s). Go mom!
What I love more is that this child came home alive.
Who I’m not very proud of right now are the people behind the #AllLivesMatter movement. This unfortunate moment proves that the movement is a distraction.
If #AllLivesMatter, why aren’t you standing behind Ahmed, who was arrested for doing nothing more than being an innovative child? Supporting him by helping to raise scholarship funds for him, so that he can encourage other children to go into STEM fields?
If #AllLivesMatter, then why aren’t you inviting this child on special dates with police officers to show him that policemen have a job to do too, and that you don’t want him to get the wrong idea about cops? Although I’m very happy that the local police chief reached out to Ahmed and his family, it would have been nicer to have seen police officials ask him to join them at a technology conference, or something that could help rebuild his trust in authority.
If #AllLivesMatter, why aren’t you working against structural racism to make sure that a child with this kind of passion isn’t marginalized by ridiculous stereotypes?
I’m not asking as a bitter Black woman, but as the parent of a child who loves technology, and who may be in the exact same position as Ahmed one day (hopefully not). I want answers just as much as Ahmed’s mom wants them.
Either way, #AllLivesMatter shouldn’t be about refuting what someone has to say about Black lives. It shouldn’t only be about police officers and children coming home alive. It shouldn’t just be about marches, Twitter hashtags, or merchandise.
It should be about action. Showing Ahmed that he did nothing wrong, and that he can go to the moon, if that’s where he wants to go. Ahmed said with his own mouth that he’s been made fun of, and called a terrorist. Well here was your moment to prove that does #AllLives indeed matter, and they start with kind actions with the words to match.
And most of all, here was your moment to change the way someone views police.
Simply put, you blew it.
Mostly because you were too busy worrying about the Black Lives Matter movement?
My sincerest prayers go out to you and your family, Ahmed. What you went through wasn’t fair. But if you happen to read this, I want you to know that you’ve inspired my family. From my son who loves technology, to his parents who worry about our child when he isn’t within eyesight. Thank you.