April 18, 2005

In Memoriam: James Allen

Carroll Andrew Morse

What really makes Providence, Rhode Island different from a place like Fallujah, Iraq? In a place like Iraq, or the Sudan, or the Congo, people like Esteban Carpio have control. They take what they want, when they want, torturing and killing anyone who gets in their way.

But the Esteban Carpios are marginal figures here, because brave people like Lieutenant James Allen stand between them and the rest of us. They deal with the violence and the chaos and the ugly side of humanity so that we dont have to.

Souls like James Allen are the souls who hold our civilization together.

In lieu of flowers for Lt. James Allen, memorial contributions may be made to St. Thomas Church, 65 Fruit Hill Ave., Providence, RI 02909.

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Detective Allen and all police officers deserve our support, praise and thanks. I hope, too, that we can also spend some time thinking of how this tragedy might have been prevented.

It appears that Esteban Carpio was not well. His seeming penchant for violence (he was arrested multiple times for domestic violence), combined with his reported mental health problems, made him a particularly dangerous person, and how we can make it more likely that such people get mental health treatment should be one issue we take up for discussion as a result of this tragedy.

Posted by: JustOneLiberal at April 19, 2005 10:23 AM