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News Story
Updated: 03/31/2013 08:00:35AM

I did not make you a criminal

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To you who stole my Land Rider bicycle last weekend: it is true my bicycle sat out there for over a year without being moved — locked up with an airplane cable — tires flat and chain rusting — but rather than asking me if you could have it, you came by, cut and ruined the airplane tie down cable and simply took the bike.

Sadly, you judged me by your own conviction: if someone had asked you for a bike you were not using, it seems you would have said “no” and so they would have had to steal it if they were desperate for it. However, I would have either given it to you, or I might asked you to do a simple task to earn it, like wash the outside of the car with the hose that is hanging nearby; not a tough or time-consuming job, but one that would allow you the dignity of working for something you needed or wanted.

You who stole from me also denied me the possibility of being generous to another human being — even though you thought yourself unworthy of generosity, I probably would have thought you worthy of my being generous to you.

You who stole from me made yourself a criminal — I did not make you a criminal and I would not have made you a criminal, if only you had allowed me to have a conversation with you.

Lynn RhodesBartow


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