Mark Cuban — billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, in case you’ve just awoken from a 20-year nap — was on the panel for Bill Maher’s HBO show on Friday night. Last week’s internet-breaking story about 14-year-old Ahmed Mohamed arrested for taking a clock to school was among the topics discussed.
Cuban revealed that he’d spoken to Ahmed and to people who work for Irving ISD to learn more about the situation.
“The kid is a super-smart kid, a science geek. I talked to him about science. But when I’m talking to him on the phone, as I asked him a question — ‘Tell me what happened,’ because I’m curious, right? — his sister, over his shoulder, you could hear, listening to the question, giving him the answer,” Cuban said.
Maher soon cut off Cuban to say that though the boy is owed an apology, it’s not unreasonable for a teacher to have suspected a mess of wires and boards carried in a case by a Muslim teenager might be dangerous, considering how many young Muslim fanatics have blown things up around the world in recent decades. But Cuban was able to return to his own point later, explaining that he was told by someone connected to the school that it was Ahmed’s awkwardness when talking about anything other than science that heightened the situation.
“All the kid had to do was engage with his teacher, and he didn’t. That’s the part that was missing,” he said. “It was wrong that he got arrested, but all he had to do was talk to the teacher, and he didn’t.”
You can view the whole conversation in the clip above.