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Author Topic: 9th Grader Arrested for Bringing a Clock to School
JoshCrow
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quote:
Originally posted by Wayward Son:
With all this talk about what the kid's motivations were, what he was trying to do, who he was trying to scare, what he was thinking, we're all missing the important part of the story: what were the adults' motivation??

We've already shown it was not to protect students (they knew it wasn't a bomb). So what was it?

All this speculation about Ahmed's motivation and intent is blaming the victim. It was the school administration and the police who overreacted, who decided that trying for criminal prosecution was the appropriate response to someone bring a clock to school. [Mad]

So rather than worrying about why a 14-year-old kid brought a clock to school, why don't we worry about school teachers, administrators, and local police who think that arrest, interrogation and threats are the appropriate response to what they know is a hoax at worst, and an innocent mistake at best. About adults who think the only way to handle children is to treat them like criminals and murderers.

Wayward - the only thing I am aware of that happened to Ahmed concretely was that he was taken to the station in cuffs and interrogated. You spoke of threats - did more happen that I am not aware of?

As to the question of motive - I can offer only speculation. I suspect the motive of the teacher could have been some variation of "this is a bomb hoax and I'm calling the police to teach this kid a lesson". Since a hoax bomb is in fact illegal, it's not totally wrong to have done so, although the teacher could have availed himself/herself of other means.

As to the police - I suspect they have been trained to take zero chances and have zero tolerance in such a situation. A police officer would likely rather have a needless arrest happen than to carelessly underestimate a danger. Assuming that when they arrived they did not immediately know it was "a hoax, at worst" then I could perhaps understand their choice.

Speaking for myself, if I were an officer I would probably now be more concerned about false arrests and social media fallout, because I feel like it would be more likely to damage my career than the unlikely odds of an actual bomb.

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AI Wessex
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It's pretty clear that the principal thought it could be a bomb, else why would he have called the police. OTOH, if he *really* thought it was a bomb, why didn't he call the police right away instead of waiting until the end of the school day and why didn't he evacuate the school?

My sense at this point is that the principal and police decided to make an example of Ahmed, even though they already knew he hadn't built a bomb and hadn't intended to scare anyone. Also, remember that the duly elected Mayor of Irving has been on a very public mission to save Texas from Sharia law. Everyone in the town knows about that, so it fits nicely into that mindset to give a black Muslim boy named Ahmed Mohammed a little extra special attention when the opportunity comes up.

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JoshCrow
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quote:
Originally posted by AI Wessex:
It's pretty clear that the principal thought it could be a bomb, else why would he have called the police. OTOH, if he *really* thought it was a bomb, why didn't he call the police right away instead of waiting until the end of the school day and why didn't he evacuate the school?

My sense at this point is that the principal and police decided to make an example of Ahmed, even though they already knew he hadn't built a bomb and hadn't intended to scare anyone. Also, remember that the duly elected Mayor of Irving has been on a very public mission to save Texas from Sharia law. Everyone in the town knows about that, so it fits nicely into that mindset to give a black Muslim boy named Ahmed Mohammed a little extra special attention when the opportunity comes up.

I see what you did there [Smile] You slipped in the idea that the principal "knew he hadn't intended to scare anyone". But that's at the heart of this, isn't it? That's the very thing that a principal could not have known for a fact (and truthfully that we still don't know for a fact).
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D.W.
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There's a fine line between "intended to scare anyone" and "thought it would be funny". Granted when I was that age people weren't quite so hypervigilient but it wouldn't have been too much of a stretch to see one of my friends bring in something like that. I could even see the, "What? A bomb? Common, you can't be serious!" response when caught red handed.

I had some teachers who would have probably found it slightly amusing but put on their responsible adult face and said, "You shouldn't flash that around, you are going to get someone worked up." Like his science teacher did. And others who would have ranged from, "You're going to the principal's office" to "OMG a bomb!" and run out of the room.

Even "smart kids" do amazingly stupid things at that age.

That the first teacher didn't take the thing away from him and "hold onto it" until after school boggles my mind.
Best case scenario: it's going to freak out ignorant or bigoted people and I can spare the kid that.
Worst case scenario: it could be a component of another device (timer/detonator) and I shouldn't take any chances.

Either way, the course of action was clear. Get the "invention/tinkering" away from the kid, then decide what if any policies were broken and if disciplinary action is required. You don’t have to assume the best or worst of the kid. You DO have to think of the best interest of the school as a whole and the other students. The politics/optics should come last. As AI points out, the politics of the situation could be weighted a bit skewed given the climate of this town…

[ September 21, 2015, 11:29 AM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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AI Wessex
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quote:
I see what you did there [Smile] You slipped in the idea that the principal "knew he hadn't intended to scare anyone". But that's at the heart of this, isn't it? That's the very thing that a principal could not have known for a fact (and truthfully that we still don't know for a fact).
I prefaced that paragraph with "My sense at this point..." to let you know I was moving into an opinion. As with everything else that becomes a matter of distilling "analog" data into "digital" information, unless every figure involved submits to extensive and possibly intrusive interrogation, we'll never be able to say we know *exactly* what happened. What I opine is consistent with all of the reports that I've read that I think are credible, including my own research on the history and culture of the town.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
His message is the standard liberal message, that America is a bigoted, evil place made up of people that need to be forced to behave in kinder, more understanding ways. The very idea that a young, middle eastern male carrying a metal box filled with circuitry, wire and a timer would cause suspicion or alarm is his proof.
No. I believe America is in fact a good, largely sensible place made up of people who do things like put together clocks in pencil cases to see if they can. I believe there are some dumb ******** who live here, though, who make it harder for the good ones.


By the way, we now have a pretty clear picture of the day, so let's refute some of the bits that have gone into "informing" some of the ridiculous suppositions here:

1) He showed one teacher, then put it away when that teacher warned him -- half-jokingly -- that it might be misinterpreted. He stuck it in his backpack.

2) The clock beeped during a later class, at which point he showed it to that class' teacher and was immediately pulled into an office.

3) At no point did the school think it was really a bomb. Nor did the police. They did, however, interrogate him for two hours, asking him why he wanted people to think he'd brought a bomb to school. They actually kept him longer because he kept refusing to admit that this was his intent -- which would be hilarious if it weren't so sad.

As far as I can tell, the kid made two mistakes:
1) He forgot to disable the alarm (although, to be fair, it's possible that it was another sort of beep; I haven't seen anything indicating whether the alarm actually went off, or whether something pressing against the buttons would cause a beep.)
2) It never occurred to him that bigots would assume he was trying to intentionally freak out his school with a clock, because he's not the sort of paranoid loser who thinks that way.

[ September 21, 2015, 11:44 AM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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JoshCrow
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Thank you, TomD, for that in-no-way-biased recap of all the facts in the case [Roll Eyes]
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TomDavidson
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Those are, as far as I can tell, all the facts.
That anyone reading them has to be a complete jerk to conclude anything else is not my fault.

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Fenring
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D.W., I absolutely agree with your last post.

As for some of the liberal posters here, I cannot get over why you're hung up on the "they knew it wasn't a bomb since they didn't call the bomb squad." This line is a complete red herring as it suggests that the only reason to arrest/detain someone is if they intended to blow up the school. Because that's the only crime there is, right? You're either a terrorist or you're "innocent." Well maybe he is innocent, but that's not something to be determined prior to collection of evidence.

I don't know why anyone would want to derail the discussion about this by saying that if it wasn't a bomb then he did nothing wrong. Will any of you (Tom, Al, Wayward) answer the following set of questions honestly:


1) Is it legal or illegal to deliberately bring a fake bomb or something known to look like a bomb into a school? If illegal, is it criminal? This is hypothetical so assume for the purposes of this question the one bringing it knows it's a bomb mock-up.

2) Is it possible or impossible that a 14 year old would decide to bring a bomb-looking thing to school, knowing it looked like that, but without being aware of the seriousness of that act or its real legality? If it's possible, does ignorance of the law turn the action from a crime into a "just a kid" thing?

3) If there was a potential crime committed, is it correct or incorrect to notify the police?

4) If an adult had brought a bomb-looking thing into a subway, would he now be (a) in jail or (b) be free with an invite to the white house with no criminal investigation?

I really challenge you to answer these.

[ September 21, 2015, 12:03 PM: Message edited by: Fenring ]

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D.W.
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Complete jerk or paranoid loser to reach the conclusion the kid has a messed up sense of humor.(but not implausible for his age)

Presidential advisor or Tom to reach the conclusion the kid is an innocent victim of bigots.

Glad we cleared that up.

[ September 21, 2015, 12:10 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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TomDavidson
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1) It's illegal, but not necessarily criminal.
2) I really defy the characterization of this thing as "bomb-looking." It looks nothing like a bomb. No one who knows anything whatsoever about bombs would confuse it for a bomb. Additionally, its bombiness is substantially reduced by the teenager standing next to it saying "no, really, I'm telling you, it's just a clock." Let's be clear about this: the likelihood that this is an intentional bomb hoax pretty much evaporates when you have the person who brought it telling you it's not a bomb in the same moment they show it to you.
3) It depends. If a school guard busts open a locker because they smell something suspicious, then find a partially-open jar of patchouli oil, should they yank the student to whom the locker belongs out of class and call in a drug dog?
4) I think it highly depends on how bomb-looking it is. As someone who has carried a computer case onto a subway without any jail time, I think it's very unlikely that adults carrying bomb-looking things onto subways would be in jail unless they fit a demographic that bigots suspect of building bombs, or they ran into someone who didn't actually know what a bomb looks like.

[ September 21, 2015, 12:16 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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D.W.
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It looks nothing like A REAL BOMB.

It looked an awful lot (unless I was tricked with a bad link?) like the made for TV / movie bomb prop.

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AI Wessex
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If you'll answer one or two I pose at the end.
quote:
1) Is it legal or illegal to deliberately bring a fake bomb or something known to look like a bomb into a school? If illegal, is it criminal? This is hypothetical so assume for the purposes of this question the one bringing it knows it's a bomb mock-up.
Probably (but I'm not sure what extenuating circumstances there might be).
quote:
2) Is it possible or impossible that a 14 year old would decide to bring a bomb-looking thing to school, knowing it looked like that, but without being aware of the seriousness of that act or its real legality? If it's possible, does ignorance of the law turn the action from a crime into a "just a kid" thing?
Sure, I bet it happens every once in a while. That's why dragons exist.
quote:
3) If there was a potential crime committed, is it correct or incorrect to notify the police?
Of course (duh).
quote:
4) If an adult had brought a bomb-looking thing into a subway, would he now be (a) in jail or (b) be free with an invite to the white house with no criminal investigation?
It depends on the circumstances, but is far more rare than any of the other scenarios you present. In Ahmed's case there was a police "investigation", so that's not part of this scenario.

OK, your turn:

1) If a kid is black, Muslim and has a name like, say, Ahmed Mohammed, is he more likely to be singled out for suspicion than a blond, blue-eyed boy of equal height, weight and social behavior named Timmy Johnson?

2) If Timmy brings something to school that he shouldn't, like something that ignorant people might mistake for a bomb, should he be harassed, handcuffed, suspended and arrested?

3) If you live in a city with a well-known historical track record for a complete lack of representation of its largest minority population (Hispanic, 31%, 2008) on its city council and a Mayor who openly campaigns against the threat of Sharia law taking root in her community, should you notify the police whenever a 14-year old black Muslim boy openly shows his teachers a clock he designed and built?

4) Under what circumstances might someone who was targeted for an excessive response by "authorities" but did nothing wrong be invited to the WH?

[ September 21, 2015, 12:26 PM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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D.W.
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quote:
4) Under what circumstances might someone who was targeted for an excessive response by "authorities" but did nothing wrong be invited to the WH?
As soon as your staff has vetted the kid and you are POSITIVE he did nothing wrong, and that the response was excessive.

Then balance the political message of "Don't overreact and don't stereotype" against potentially causing those safeguarding our children to hesitate or fail to take action for risk of social media crucifixion.

After that, you can extend an invitation to the WH or make a public statement in support of the victim of this unfair treatment.

I'm not saying it was wrong for the WH to invite the kid. I was disturbed at how quickly they made the decision to do so. Then again, I suppose if political causes waited for ideal poster kids (and this one was a litteral kid!) they'd never gain traction.

[ September 21, 2015, 12:41 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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Fenring
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D.W., of course it doesn't look like a real bomb. But if it looks 'pretty bomby' why should the burden of evidence be on school staff to know how bombs should properly be constructed? These are regular people who come from home to work and they're supposed to be able to tell real bombs from fake on sight? "No detonator, nice try dude [Smile] " Anything that looks 'pretty bomby', according to homeland, should be reported right away. That being said, all they needed to think was that the kid knew it looked like a bomb and right away we have a police matter. Whether it actually was one is irrelevant to this point. In a similar vein if someone had brought something to school they really thought was a bomb, but wasn't, they'd be guilty of terrorism even if the thing was obviously not a bomb. In this case the potential crime is bomb hoax, or whatever term homeland uses to describe someone who knowingly causes people to think there is a bomb. The kid's personal opinion of what he was doing with a bomby-looking thing doesn't alter the reality of what he did.

Al, here are my answers:

1) I have no way of measuring this, although obviously you expect me to say "no" while hoping I'll say "yes." I was trying to pose unbiased hypothetical legal questions but this one looks to me like just asking my opinion on something, but where you'll make a factual assertion that my opinion is right or wrong. This question is therefore a trap where I either agree it's a racial issue or else you tell me I'm wrong.

2) Depends entirely on what Timmy knew going in, and his motive. Ignoring that it's Timmy for the moment (because we want to assume innocence in children) I can tell you that all sorts of people in New York City get detained or arrested in the subway for having various dangerous looking things. If there was nothing wrong then they can be released, but the police in that city take no chances and err on the side of (a) being safe and (b) making sure people know not to f**k around in the public transit system. I would say that a school is at least as important a place to keep safe as a subway. Going back to Timmy, how much leeway should someone receive for being a minor? So much leeway that you won't even tell the police about a potential [fake] bomb scare? As far as I can tell it might actually be illegal to fail to report something like this to the police. How would you like the principal to be fired for negligence if they had let this slide and someone found out?

3) He neither designed it nor built it; this part is a complete lie (on behalf of both the media and the kid himself) as Dawkins and others have pointed out. But regardless the fact that you think the reporting a potential crime should hinge on the demographics of the town in which it's committed sounds to me like a morally and legally bankrupt suggestion.

4) Invitations are up to the President for any reason he likes. If the President was really concerned about excessive responses from authorities I'm sure there are many families of people wrongfully shot by police that Obama could invite to the white house too. But then it would be Obama throwing the police under the bus instead of some school; not so politically convenient for him to do. Overall I think it's nice for the President to try to make amends for a wrong, assuming a wrong was committed. It's his call anyhow, but it seems to me that honoring someone should also involve that person being distinctly honorable. It really looks like an anti-racism bandwagon PR move, but I could be wrong about that.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
Anything that looks 'pretty bomby', according to homeland, should be reported right away...
Just a quick question: we all agree that Homeland Security is full of s**t about pretty much everything, yes? Or is there someone here with a basement full of plastic sheeting?
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D.W.
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quote:
D.W., of course it doesn't look like a real bomb. But if it looks 'pretty bomby' why should the burden of evidence be on school staff to know how bombs should properly be constructed? These are regular people who come from home to work and they're supposed to be able to tell real bombs from fake on sight? "No detonator, nice try dude " Anything that looks 'pretty bomby', according to homeland, should be reported right away. That being said, all they needed to think was that the kid knew it looked like a bomb and right away we have a police matter. Whether it actually was one is irrelevant to this point. In a similar vein if someone had brought something to school they really thought was a bomb, but wasn't, they'd be guilty of terrorism even if the thing was obviously not a bomb. In this case the potential crime is bomb hoax, or whatever term homeland uses to describe someone who knowingly causes people to think there is a bomb. The kid's personal opinion of what he was doing with a bomby-looking thing doesn't alter the reality of what he did.
That was my point. [Smile]
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AI Wessex
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I think they chose to counter a media perception with one of their own, rather than wait to see what polling would tell them people wanted to hear or until after the boy's release from prison after his conviction. So, yes, I agree that it was premature and probably an excessive reaction. I suppose the conservosphere reaction to the WH response was yet another over-reaction, but then again, not surprising.
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Wayward Son
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It makes no sense to believe that the kid brought the clock to school to scare anyone, either for fun or anything else, because he knew he would be caught for doing it.

Think about that for a second. Ahmed knew, if he put the clock anywhere and someone found it and thought it was a bomb, that he would be held responsible. So in what way would he have had any "fun?" [Roll Eyes]

The whole idea of bring something illegal to school is to get away with it. But Ahmed knew he wouldn't. So what would he have gotten out of it?

It makes no sense to say he knowingly brought something he believed people would take a bomb, because he knew he would be caught.

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JoshCrow
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Wayward - Kids don't do dumb things where you're from? How many times has a kid pulled off some prank where they happily take credit - in fact even SEEKING negative attention for it? He may have figured "what's the worst that could happen - I can always just say 'it's a clock' if I get in trouble, and it's totally true so I don't even have to lie."
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TomDavidson
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But why would you choose to believe that?
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Wayward Son
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But exactly how did he expect to get attention? How did he expect that it would cause a ruckus?

Did he think he could leave it under a car and make people think is was a bomb? Did he think a teacher would see it and think it was a bomb? Did he think he could show it other students and tell them it was a bomb? Exactly how would his little prank have worked out, given the circumstances? Because I can't figure out a good way.

He assumed that the teachers wouldn't think it was a bomb. So why are so many people assuming he did? [Roll Eyes]

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D.W.
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The "game" or "fun" is getting right up to the line of "looks like a bomb and people will freak" and "looks nothing like a bomb and people will feel bad if they fall for it or over react."

Showing people they are suckers or making them behave badly (show themselves to be stereotyping) is the game.

Having an "out" in that he showed his teacher or it was OBVIOUSLY not a bomb... Just a clock! is part of the fun.

Why would I choose to believe that? I hung out with some immature jerks like this in high school... I can not want to see the kid mistreated AND not want to see him made out to be some poor opressed innocent who gets to be consoled / praised by POTUS.

Edit2: Not to suggest I KNOW this kid is an immature jerk. Only that I think that is most likely the case.

[ September 21, 2015, 02:09 PM: Message edited by: D.W. ]

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DJQuag
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How integrated and assimilated is the Muslim population around Irving, anyway?

I only ask because I've spent a lot of time in England over the past couple of years, and I've seen firsthand there second and third generation immigrants who are pretty much indistinguishable from your average Saudi Islamoasshole. Women to be covered and with men at all times, Shariah for everyone, etc. Whole neighborhoods and communities of them.

America is better at the assimilating immigrants thing then Europe tends to be, so I'm guessing most of them are just normal Americans who choose a different fairy tale to believe in. But part of being better at that process is letting immigrants know that when they get here there are certain savage practices that need to be left in the mother country.

If a law gets passed stating that there will be no religious courts, and no judge will take into account anything but the law in their jurisdiction, I'm cool with that. It's not doing any harm.

I'm guessing some will infer that makes me Islamphobic, but that's not the case. I just don't like religious extremism in any form. Unfortunately, one particular religion has really gotten ahead of the rest when it comes to violent extremism in the last few decades. As soon as the Christians are marching through London demanding the return of ecclesiastical courts, or strapping suicide vests to themselves, you'll see me talking about them.

You guys know one of the most awful things about the Hebdo shooting? That there were so many otherwise moderate Muslims who talked about how awful the shootings were, but then right after that said that the Prophet is Holy and really, what can you expect to happen, it makes the righteous crazy to have to hear and see such blasphemy.

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Wayward Son
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quote:
The "game" or "fun" is getting right up to the line of "looks like a bomb and people will freak" and "looks nothing like a bomb and people will feel bad if they fall for it or over react."

Showing people they are suckers or making them behave badly (show themselves to be stereotyping) is the game.

That still doesn't make sense when you look that what he did.

Let's say he expected that people would think it was a bomb. If so, what did he expect the shop teacher to do when he saw it??

The shop teacher would probably recognize it wasn't a bomb. But if it looked sufficiently like a bomb, he would have confiscated it immediately, to make sure no one else was scared by it. And then he would have been told never to bring it to school again.

Where's the thrill in that?

If he wanted to scare people with it, he wouldn't have shown it to the shop teacher first. Because he wouldn't have known if the shop teacher would have let him carry it for the rest of the day.

In fact, this is all really the shop teacher's fault, because he didn't realize his fellow teachers would have been so paranoid as to mistake a clock for a bomb. [Frown]

Ahem would only have shown it to a person of authority if he believed it didn't look like a bomb. Because if he did believe it looked like a bomb, the game would have been over right then and there. And that wouldn't have been any fun.

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DJQuag
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
But why would you choose to believe that?

1) Kids are stupid. Even the intelligent ones.

2) I was one of those kids, and the idea of messing with people's heads and getting reactions like that would have appealed to me at his age. IF that was the case, it's also possible he didn't realise he could actually be arrested.

ETA - Wayward

He knows that the science teacher knows enough to know what it is, but he counts on other people not having the same knowledge or being more gullible. That's just assuming that he was playing a prank.

[ September 21, 2015, 02:23 PM: Message edited by: DJQuag ]

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DJQuag
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And if the kid did know that a bomb hoax gets you arrested, he's doubly stupid for not leaving the clock with the science teacher after he was told it could be mistaken for one.
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D.W.
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But if you never CLAIM it's a bomb. State explicitly it is NOT a bomb. Showed your teacher your "home project" first thing. We'll it's the student's and staff's fault for being suckers or assuming any Muslim with a LED display is looking to blow them up. Teehee
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
The "game" or "fun" is getting right up to the line of "looks like a bomb and people will freak" and "looks nothing like a bomb and people will feel bad if they fall for it or over react."

Showing people they are suckers or making them behave badly (show themselves to be stereotyping) is the game.

Having an "out" in that he showed his teacher or it was OBVIOUSLY not a bomb... Just a clock! is part of the fun.

Wouldn't he have had to show it someone besides his teachers for that to be the case? The only people that apparently saw it on his initiative were the teacher that he brought it in to show to and the other teacher that he showed it to after class to explain why something had beeped and disrupted the class.

I fully agree that there are some kids who behave that way, especially teens, but there's no evidence that he was doing that at all.

quote:
We'll it's the student's and staff's fault for being suckers or assuming any Muslim with a LED display is looking to blow them up.
Which student and staff? H didn't show it to students or administrative staff, just two teachers. If your goal s to spook and mess with people, you need to actualyl show them something that messes with them, not keep it hidden.

[ September 21, 2015, 02:33 PM: Message edited by: Pyrtolin ]

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DJQuag
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
The "game" or "fun" is getting right up to the line of "looks like a bomb and people will freak" and "looks nothing like a bomb and people will feel bad if they fall for it or over react."

Showing people they are suckers or making them behave badly (show themselves to be stereotyping) is the game.

Having an "out" in that he showed his teacher or it was OBVIOUSLY not a bomb... Just a clock! is part of the fun.

Wouldn't he have had to show it someone besides his teachers for that to be the case? The only people that apparently saw it on his initiative were the teacher that he brought it in to show to and the other teacher that he showed it to after class to explain why something had beeped and disrupted the class.

I fully agree that there are some kids who behave that way, especially teens, but there's no evidence that he was doing that at all.

Why did it suddenly start beeping in the middle of English class? I've had clocks that would turn the radio on if the sleep button was pressed, but I've never had one that started beeping for anything other then a set alarm.

Not to mention his father said that the kid actually used the clock. So it's a fair assumption that the time was set correctly. So why would it start beeping in the middle of class?

[ September 21, 2015, 02:37 PM: Message edited by: DJQuag ]

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D.W.
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I have no idea who else saw it. I don't know what evidence there is either way. I don't know if he meant for it to beep or not so he would be forced to reveal it. I have no idea what he had planned to do before his clock was confiscated.

Maybe I just hung out with too many smart but irresponsible kids when I was that age. Maybe a lot of you hung out with nieve goody-goodies. [Smile]

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by Fenring:


4) If an adult had brought a bomb-looking thing into a subway, would he now be (a) in jail or (b) be free with an invite to the white house with no criminal investigation?


Why do you want to take the fact that he is a 14 year-old kid out of the equation? If we thought that 14 year-old kids had the judgment of adults we would let them drive and vote.
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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by D.W.:
But if you never CLAIM it's a bomb. State explicitly it is NOT a bomb. Showed your teacher your "home project" first thing. We'll it's the student's and staff's fault for being suckers or assuming any Muslim with a LED display is looking to blow them up. Teehee

Haha! And retroactive ROFL for JoshCrow's snark comment about the display flashing 9:11. I laughed so hard I had to leave the room and my girlfriend thought I was crazy. But that was unrelated [Big Grin]

But seriously Wayward, the fact that you are crediting a 14 year old with perfect foresight and tactical assessment abilities is more fantastic than anything else I've seen in this thread. And anyhow whether or not he thought it looked like a bomb when he brought it, he definitely knew it did after his teacher told him. You don't really have a leg to stand on with this point. However I do agree that once the teacher saw it I think it was his responsibility to confiscate it right away. This part was the teacher's failure. I can fault the teacher for not observing safe procedure in this case, but even then we have to remember that this is just some dude who has likely never received safety briefings on terrorism and dangers in schools. It's not like he had training to fall back on, even though I would suggest common sense would say to confiscate it.

Tom, why do you keep suggesting that anyone definitively believes specific intentions of the kid? We are entertaining all possibilities that are reasonable, none of which includes summarily judging the kid as definitely innocent and wronged. I see the main objection to the media response as being the baseless insistence on his innocence, and the additional insistence that not only was he wronged but that it was because of his race. The only people definitely fixated on his race that we know of are people claiming racism.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
Tom, why do you keep suggesting that anyone definitively believes specific intentions of the kid? We are entertaining all possibilities that are reasonable...
This kid isn't a media figure. He is a 14-year-old kid who built a clock and brought it to school.

Why the hell are you "entertaining possibilities" about his character?

Damn fools talk about the right to privacy all the time, but this is exactly the sort of crap that people should want to keep private. What sort of lame jerks speculate on the motives of a teenage kid for building and showing off a clock casemod? Why would they think it's necessary? What sort of jollies do they get out of it?

---------

quote:
Why did it suddenly start beeping in the middle of English class? I've had clocks that would turn the radio on if the sleep button was pressed, but I've never had one that started beeping for anything other then a set alarm.
Without knowing anything about this specific model, I owned a clock from that period that softly beeped whenever a button was pressed. My best guess is that either the alarm was triggered, or a button that produced a beep was pushed when something in his backpack shifted. *shrug*

[ September 21, 2015, 02:52 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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Wayward Son
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quote:
He knows that the science teacher knows enough to know what it is, but he counts on other people not having the same knowledge or being more gullible. That's just assuming that he was playing a prank.
So let me get this straight. He built the clock to look like a bomb, right?

But he also built the clock so it wouldn't look like a bomb so the science teacher wouldn't confiscate it, right?

Because if it looks like a bomb, even if it isn't, the science teacher wouldn't let him show it to anyone else, or just bust him right there.

So he has to make sure it looks like a bomb and doesn't look like a bomb for his prank to work.

That's what you're saying right? [Wink]

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by DJQuag:

If a law gets passed stating that there will be no religious courts, and no judge will take into account anything but the law in their jurisdiction, I'm cool with that. It's not doing any harm.


While we are at it, can we finish getting rid of the ten commandments in courthouses and judges ordering parents to undergo Christian counseling?
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DJQuag
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quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
quote:
Originally posted by DJQuag:

If a law gets passed stating that there will be no religious courts, and no judge will take into account anything but the law in their jurisdiction, I'm cool with that. It's not doing any harm.


While we are at it, can we finish getting rid of the ten commandments in courthouses and judges ordering parents to undergo Christian counseling?
Yes. Please and thank you!
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Wayward Son
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quote:
And anyhow whether or not he thought it looked like a bomb when he brought it, he definitely knew it did after his teacher told him. You don't really have a leg to stand on with this point.
Did the teacher actually tell him it looked like a bom? I didn't read that.

And if he did, why the hell did the teacher let him walk around school all day carrying something that looked like a bomb? [Confused]

I assumed that the science teacher believed it was something that you shouldn't be taking to school, like an electronic game, that would get him in trouble just for bringing to school.

[ September 21, 2015, 02:58 PM: Message edited by: Wayward Son ]

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
Why do you want to take the fact that he is a 14 year-old kid out of the equation? If we thought that 14 year-old kids had the judgment of adults we would let them drive and vote.

In the case of a licensed activity young people are prohibited due to how the licences are awarded (age being a factor). In the case of crime there is no age limit or age-related factor relevant to whether something is a crime or not. The age of the accused certainly should factor into both how he's tried (if it comes to that) and sentencing. And I would also say that certain technically illegal things, such as underage drinking, are really asinine to all the authorities over and allowances should be made based on decency. But when we're talking about a bomb in a school...really is this the time to let kids off the hook 'for being kids'? What if a kid brought a contraption to school that looked somewhat like an assault rifle? Would that be a fine 'science project' to show his teacher too? People scream about safety and gun control, but when it's a bomb (not a liberal issue) it was just an innocent mistake. Maybe it was. Don't you want to be sure?

[ September 21, 2015, 03:00 PM: Message edited by: Fenring ]

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DJQuag
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Tom

It's been all over the news, that's why. And the main narrative has been, oh, this poor innocent boy. How awful for him.

While this has been getting shoved in our faces, some people have looked at the narrative and said that he either looks like a complete idiot (you know, the one planning on MIT), or that he was acting a fool. Then we, like you, got on the Internet to argue about it.

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