Ziad Ahmed is the Muslim teen who answered a question on his Stanford admission application with the hasthag #BlackLivesMatter pasted 100 times.
Ziad was accepted by Stanford, and while his bold statement may not be the reason he was admitted, it definitely put an exclamation point on the career of an 18-year-old who has already been invited to the White House, worked on two presidential campaigns and created two youth organizations. We should be praising him regardless of whether or not is statement is what got him in.
We should be praising him because he is the future, and he is already making an impact on the world.
Of course, in the online world, writing about something like this usually leads to the types of responses that let you know people just love to be miserable, hateful, and downright disrespectful.
I’m not as bothered by the people arguing that it’s not the statement that got him in. So what. We don’t care about that.
I’m more concerned about the people who feel the need to comment with hate and vitriol thrown at a teenager who is just trying to leave some good in the world. The Islamophobia is sickening.
But there is something else mixed in with the Islamophobia. It’s that old throwback hate against the very idea that Black Lives Matter.
Black Lives Matter, and saying that out loud should not be a problem for anyone. No one is saying that Black Lives Matter more than other lives. No one is saying that in order to preserve Black lives we are going to take out other lives. No one is asking for anything more than the recognition of the humanity of a people who built this damn country on their own blood, sweat, and tears, but are still considered “other” and “unworthy” in the eyes of a dying minority that wants to use the illusion of a majority to remain in control.
So, yes. I wrote about Ziad Ahmed’s Stanford statement. I wrote about it because what he did was important, regardless to how you feel about it.
And that an 18-year-old Muslim boy from Bangladesh could make such a bold statement gives me hope for the future.
Is your activism performative or substantive? One New Jersey teen knew exactly how to show his answer to that question when filling out his application to Stanford University. Asked “What matters to you, and why?” the teen could think of only one thing: #BlackLivesMatter.
Ziad Ahmed wrote the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter 100 times, and that one act of activism paid off. According to a Mic profile of Ahmed, he received his letter of acceptance from Stanford on Friday.