These days it is all too easy to feel depressed about all the global conflict and misunderstanding in the headlines. It seems that everywhere, people are fighting over whose religion is right. That’s why we can’t wait another minute to tell you about Ahmed Shikoh and Max Rosen, two extraordinary 9th graders at James Patterson High School in Columbia, Maryland.
Ahmed- who is Muslim- and Max- who is a Jew- hate each other, make no mistake about it. They’re like oil and water. Max has been bullying Ahmed since Ahmed moved to the district 4 years ago, about everything, from his clothes, to his parents’ accents, to the way he smells, and more. And while Max got the better of it for the first few years, lately, Ahmed has been giving it right back to Max in his own way.
Well, Ahmed has gotten more popular now that he joined the lacrosse team, and Max’s father Jacob Rosen was indicted for securities fraud, which has put his family’s financial security in jeopardy, so Max hasn’t been able to wear the same level of designer clothes to school this year that he has in the past. Meanwhile, Ahmed’s father was promoted to chief of neurosurgery at his hospital, so Ahmed is now able to dress much better than Max (especially since he started shopping with his friends instead of his mother). As a result, Ahmed has been able to get several subtle digs in at Max this year, as he grows in self-confidence while Max is struggling to cope with his home life!
There’s no doubt about the fact that Ahmed and Max are not going to get along any time soon, and that there is absolutely no desire on the part of either one to resolve their issues into anything even remotely resembling a friendship.
But if you think that the fact that Ahmed is Muslim, and Max is Jewish, has a thing to do with their antagonistic relationship… well you’d be flat out wrong!
These two amazing kids totally respect each others religions!
We reached out to both students to confirm if these rumors were true, and sure enough, their responses left no doubt. Here is what Max told us:
“Ahmed is a fucking douchebag, okay? He thinks he’s the shit now just because he’s on the lacrosse team. That doesn’t change the fact that he’s a silly little faggot. Even the teachers don’t like him. That’s why his face is brown, because of all the teacher ass he kisses.”
OK, fair enough. But take a look at what Max- who is Jewish- said when we asked him if his feelings towards Ahmed- a Muslim- had anything to do with some “latent hatred” of Islam:
“Wait, Ahmed’s Muslim? I thought he was Sikh or something. But no, if he is Muslim, that’s cool. I think all religions are mostly just about being a good person and stuff, aren’t they? I think most of the stuff they say about Muslims is just media hype and Islamophobia, it’s really not fair to Ahmed and his family.”
Um… Win! Is this kid the most tolerant, open-minded kid you’ve ever met, or what? Uh, waitress? Could we have an order of ‘Max with extra awesome sauce’ when you get a chance? What a hero!
But wait till you hear what Ahmed (a Muslim) said about Max (Jewish):
“Max has been teasing me ever since we moved here. It’s been really hard, but it’s getting a little easier now. I heard his dad lost his job or something. Maybe that’s why he’s been so mean, a lot of times I think kids act that way when they have problems at home. I hope his dad finds a job soon.”
Ahmed, don’t you know Muslims are supposed to hate Jews?
“No. Why would I hate Max for being Jewish? I mean, I hate how he bullies me. But it’s not like he’s one of those Jews who controls the media, and I don’t think his family is from Israel or Zionist or anything. As a Muslim, I hate those Jews because they’re oppressing the Muslims and killing Muslim babies and stuff. But my religion tells me that God will punish those Jews by throwing them in the hellfire after this life for what they did to the Muslims, so there’s no point in wasting energy in hating anyone just for being Jewish.”
Okay, okay, time out: how could ANYONE have a problem with Islam after hearing this 14 year old future Nobel Prize winner explain EXACTLY what Islam is truly all about??
Anyone? Anyone at all??
It’s young kids like Ahmed that should be in the news for how they exemplify Islam… not those other guys who use Islam to commit terror and don’t know their religion even half as well as this high school kid does.
So the next time you see some story about Muslims and Jews not getting along because of religious differences, just think of Ahmed* and Max**, two fine young men who prove that it IS possible to hate someone, not because of their religion, but for who they are as a person! And if that doesn’t restore your faith in humanity- we don’t know what will!