Kyle Smith, New York Post, September 19, 2015
When is America going to get serious about the problem of white kids getting suspended from school for nothing?
By now you’ve heard the story of Ahmed Mohamed, crowned by the Daily Beast “The Muslim Hero America Has Been Waiting For” after the 14-year-old brought to school a beeping, strange-looking homemade concealed device that turned out to be a clock.
School officials, thinking, as 95 percent of Americans would, that it kinda looked like a bomb, hauled him out of class. Police put him in handcuffs and, even after the confusion passed, the boy was suspended from school.
The police overreacted. Yet the device did look like something Ethan Hunt would lob out of a helicopter at the last minute in “Mission: Impossible.” As National Review’s Charles Cooke pointed out on Twitter, the scary-looking tangle of wires “looks a lot more like a bomb than a pop tart looks like a gun.”
Josh Welch, a white Maryland kid with ADHD who was 7 years old when he was kicked out of school for chewing a Pop-Tart into the shape of a pistol and pretending to shoot other students with it, must be puzzled.
Where’s his White House invitation? Where’s his chance to start networking at Facebook? His parents were forced to hire a lawyer and spent a year and a half just trying to get the suspension erased from the kid’s record. They were repeatedly refused.
“I stand with Ahmed, too. But I also stand with Alex Stone,” noted Reason writer Robby Soave. Alex Stone, a 16-year-old white kid from Summerville, SC, wrote a short story in which he imagined using a gun to kill a dinosaur. For this, his locker was searched and he was arrested, handcuffed, charged with “disorderly conduct” and suspended from school for three days.
Are white kids being punished en masse for dopey quasi-infractions because of their race? Of course not. That’s ridiculous.
But it’s equally absurd to suggest that you have to be Muslim, or brown-skinned, or live in Texas, to be subjected to overenthusiastic use of school discipline and police force.
“It never would have happened to a white kid”? It happens to white kids all. The. Time.