Atheist Richard Dawkins is not pulling any punches when it comes to the arrest of Muslim teen Ahmed Mohamed. The young man was accused by school officials and by the local police of creating a hoax “bomb” clock, although he was never charged with any crime. When the story went public, many people rushed to defend Ahmed, but Dawkins certainly does not #StandWithAhmed based upon his Twitter comments.
In a related report by the Inquisitr, a 13-year-old African-American boy from Georgia named C.J. Pearson has been making waves on Facebook by calling out President Barack Obama for inviting Ahmed Mohamed to the White House. Bristol Palin also publicly bashed President Obama for his support of the teenage clockmaker, and Sarah Palin joined in with the criticism.
The debate over Ahmed Mohamed has quickly become a political firestorm. But, oddly enough, criticisms of the Muslim teen have both conservatives and atheist Richard Dawkins voicing the same concerns. The atheist leader even claimed Ahmed may have “wanted to be arrested” in order to spark a controversy over American Muslims and racism.
“Assembling clock from bought components is fine. Taking clock out of its case to make it look as if he built it is not fine. Which is true?” Dawkins said on Twitter. “Yes, there are other reasons why a boy might take a clock out of its casing and pretend he’d made it. Trying to impress teachers, for instance. If the reassembled components did something more than the original clock, that’s creative. If not, it looks like hoax.”
As a justification for these comments, Richard Dawks pointed to this YouTube video, which criticizes the homemade clock built by Ahmed.
Thomas Talbot, the creator of the YouTube video, specifically claims that Ahmed built the clock for the purpose of getting a reaction.
“The ‘clock’ is a commercial bedside alarm clock removed from its casing,” he wrote. “There is nothing to indicate that the clock was even assembled by the child. I suspect this was brought into school to create an alarmed reaction.”
As further evidence, Dawkins also cited a blog post by Art Voice, which claimed that Ahmed Mohamed lied about creating a clock.
“Ahmed Mohamed didn’t invent his own alarm clock. He didn’t even build a clock…. Amhed’s clock was invented, and built, by Micronta, a Radio Shack subsidary. Catalog number 63 756.”
Like Richard Dawkins, the blog claimed that Ahmed may have been playing a “silly prank” on his teacher while fully knowing how the briefcase clock would be perceived.
“Teachers are taught to be suspicious and vigilant. Ahmed wasn’t accused of making a bomb — he was accused of making a look-alike, a hoax. And be honest with yourself, a big red digital display with a bunch of loose wires in a brief-case looking box is awful like a Hollywood-style representation of a bomb.”
Fellow atheist Bill Maher has also made similar points to Richard Dawkins, claiming that the teachers did the right thing by calling the police.
“People at the school thought it might be a bomb, because it looks exactly like a f**king bomb. It’s not the color of his skin. Excuse me, somebody look me in the eye right here and tell me. Over the last 30 years, if so many young Muslim men … and he’s young, 14, but that’s not like it’s never happened before, hasn’t blown a lot of s—t up around the world. And this guy, this kid deserves an apology, because he wasn’t one of them… For the last 30 years, it’s been the one culture that has been blowing s**t up over and over again.”
When some Twitter users confronted Richard Dawkins over his accusations of fraud, he did appear to back pedal a little.
“Sorry if I go a bit over the top in my passion for truth…. We were all fooled, and arresting him was wrong. Like searching shoes at airports,” Dawkins wrote. “I’m not putting down the child. I’m putting down myself and the rest of us for being fooled. And the police for arresting him for nothing.”
What do you think?
[Image via Getty Images]