The following letter was sent to County Executive David Craig, County Councilman Dion Guthrie, Del. B. Dan Riley and the Edgewood Community Council, along with The Dagger.
By Omar Simpson, Esq.
The Edgewood Community Council meeting last Wednesday got pretty heated towards the end. Since I’ve spoken up about Dwight Madison’s death at the Harford County Detention Center, I’ve been attacked by some people and asked by many people why I care so much about this “issue”. Why am I willing to piss off the Sheriff, County Executive and our Elected Officials over the death of one “homeless” man? Why? Because I believe each and every person is precious and that we ultimately help ourselves when we help our brothers thrive. Let me explain using Matthew 13:3-23 which says:
“Listen! A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate them up. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. Let anyone with ears listen!”
Each and every person is precious. Each person has a God-given seed of potential that makes him or her invaluable, unique and special. Poor or rich, white or black, male or female…it doesn’t matter. God gives each person a gift and we, as men, should cherish it.
Jesus, was a simple carpenter…hardly a rich man in terms of earthly wealth…but he changed the world. Gandhi was not a wealthy man, but he also changed the world and showed us that peace and love can indeed set us free. Gandhi inspired Martin Luther King, Jr., who was hardly a rich man either, but he changed the world and lit the light on a dream that still inspires us today. These great, great men were not rich men, but they were all valuable. Their very existence proves that there is no relation between a persons’ wealth or status and his or her value as a human being. How many potential Gandhi’s and MLK’s are we losing each year simply because we refuse to truly value one another? Each person is precious.
I sincerely believe our role is to create an environment that helps people grow and thrive. By helping people grow, we inevitably help ourselves. Their gifts contribute to and enrich our community. In Matthew 13, we are told that those seeds that do not fall on fertile soil are, for one reason or another, doomed. Shouldn’t we then do our best to ensure our seeds do indeed fall on fertile soil? In other words, we must do our best to create an environment where each person’s God-given gifts can grow and thrive.
Michael Phelps would never have reached the heights he has reached without a swimming pool. If he had lived in a bad environment, with no pools and no activities for youth, we would never even heard of him…and he would never have found glory in far away Beijing. Environment brings potential to life. Dr. Ben Carson, the world famous surgeon from Johns Hopkins, would never have become the great man he is today without an environment in which he could be educated. Think of how many lives he has saved! Environment, the soil in which we plant our seeds, spurs our potential and brings it to life where it then enriches our community. Our mission should be to create an environment that helps people grow and thrive. By doing so, each person’s God-given gifts will in turn enrich our communities and our lives.
In Conclusion, I fight for Dwight because each person is precious. If we are to be successful, we must create an environment that helps people grow and thrive. By doing so each persons’ God-given gifts will in turn enrich our communities and our lives.
Tragedies, like Dwight Madison’s death at the detention center, only happen when we lose sight of the fact that every person is precious…that each person has a seed of the divine…whether they be rich or poor, black or white, male or female…everyone is precious. Dwight Madison, in his family’s eyes and in God’s eyes was precious. That’s why I fight for him. That’s why I’ll fight for anyone whose human worth is being devalued or denied…that’s why I will fight for you.
It’s not personal Sheriff…it’s not personal Councilmen…it’s not personal Executive Craig. It is more than that…it’s spiritual…an understanding that right now is the time to speak up on a great wrong in the hopes it will never happen again.