Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - October 30, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
people 01 ike south Focus J. W. FISHBOURNE A forward-looking TX) an average layman, the typical policeman is usual- ly depicted as a tall strapping fellow with a booming voice to match his size. When in per- formance of his duty as an offi- cer of the law he oozes author- ity regardless of the situation, whether he is helping a lost child find his mother, or ap- prehending an armed bank rob- ber. James H. Carpenter who re- tires this month as Chief of the Lethbridge Police Force, doesn't look at all like the ster- eotype model. Although tall, he's not especially muscular and he is as soft spoken as a curate. In fact he has such a scholarly appearance that if you put a robe and mortar board on him he'd look much more like a college dean than a po- liceman. But Chief Carpenter is very much a policeman, has been one most of his adult life, and in his' quiet way has contri- buted greatly to the establish- ment of understanding and co- operation between the local force and the community. Fur- thermore, from reflections and recollections he shared dur- ing an interview recently, he seems to have enjoyed his ca- reer; and one thing is for cer- tain it has been one which has been as diverse as it has been exciting. Jim Carpenter was born in Osage, Saskatchewan in Octo- ber, 1911. When his father, who was with Swift's, was trans- ferred to Lethbridge in 1920 the Carpenter family settled in to become Albertans. Young Jim received his education in the local schools, graduating from Lethbridge Collegiate with the hope of some day becoming a surgeon. But times were diffi- cult in the '30s so, after a se- ries of odd jobs, he went into business with his Dad who had opened a meat market and gro- cery store. "I guess I was lucky to nave a job at all in those Chief Carpenter recalled, "and instead of becoming a surgeon I became a butcher! But busi- ness everywhere was could buy a yearling steer for five dollars so neither farmers nor merchants had any money at all. The result was that my father, like a lot of merchants, went bankrupt. Luckily though, I got a similar job in Jenkins Groceteria in Vulcan where I was employed for a short time, but during this period I knew it wasn't what I wanted out of life. In 1940 I returned to Lelh- bridge and joined the police force. This was the realistic al- ternative to becoming a sur- geon as I'd been interested in the force all my life. I'd been raised in Scouting you see. and practically grew up in RCMP K Division barracks. Then too, Bob'Peterson, son of Inspector Peterson, had an influence on my decision. I think I would have gone into the force imme- diately I finished school but they didn't want 18-year-old kids then so I had to lake other jobs. I went into the force with the rank of constable and earn- ed a month. That may not sound very large, but the chief only made about him- self, and anyway money went a lot farther in those days than it does now." In 1940 when Jim Carpentet joined the force, the Lethbridge population had slowly crept up to about "Tom Nichols was chief then and the comple- ment of the force was 13 the chief explained. "The war was on and the 40s seemed to introduce a new era both for the city and the police force." Although Chief Carpenter re members all too well the hun- gry 30s which produced long relief queues and transients who "rode the he was not at that time on the force and not involved in the social problems of these people ex- cept as a sympathetic citizen. "It was a well known fact that vagrants didn't mind gelling tossed in jail for the night from time to time at least they could depend on getting a good night's sleep and a decent the chief observed. "I missed out on the buffalo coats foo for they went out in 1937 to be replaced with ones made of horse hide. People wondered why the switch from buffalo to hides, as the former was pretty symbolic of western policeman, but after all, the buffalo had gone and it was in- evitable the coals would even- tually wear out and become a tiling of tlie past too." In the early 40s an RCAF bombing and gunnery school was opened at Kenyan Field Lclhbridgc, and recruits with their wives and families moved in. expanding (he population of the cily. "Actually we could have used a bigger force at that lime but we had difficulty getting the chief explain- ed. "This situation lasted until the war ended, but somehow we managed. always had excellent co operation with the military which mada our job easier. When the Pris- oner of War camp was built, veterans of the First World War were organized as guards. There were a few prisoners who escaped over the period of detention but we usually man- aged to pick them up, some- times just in a local beer par- lor. I'm not certain, but 1 don't think the camp ever lost a pris- oner." In the early days of his ser- vice, Lethbridge was a pretty wide open town, the chief ad- mitted. "There was consider- able prostitution, gambling and bootlegging and all were pretty hard to patrol and control. Min- ers, lumberjacks, ranchers, cow- boys and so forth were out for good time after working and it was pretty difficult for a small police force to handle all the situations which arose. For example there were several bootleggers who did a lucra- tive business with the assis- tance of a few obliging taxi drivers. The liquor vendors closed at 10 p.m. so if you wanted booze and knew who to contact you could get a bottle anytime for a few extra bucks! For a while there was also a flourishing numbers racket and many people made pretty good money on a small bet. This always brought them back for more of course for it was easy money but it kept the force topping to track down the oper- ators. They were pretty shifty characters and kept a jump ahead of us for quite a time." In the first few years of his service Jim Carpenter had many exciting experiences and some which were just plain funny. "We had a complaint from the north side about a barking he recalled with a grin, "so tlic coiTJorel 1 went to investigate. We knock- ed on the back door and while we could hear a lot of scuf- fling around inside, nobody an- swered our knock for the long- est time. Finally a man and woman opened up the door and we explained the reason for our call. They looked immensely re- lieved and promised to see to the dog. Years later the couple admitted to me thai they'd been making chokecherry wine and had it alresdy lo bottle when we arrived. Home wine mak- ing was illegal then so you can imagine their distress when they saw who it was at the door. They panicked, they told me, and spilled the whole works down the sink before they let us fn his early years Jim Car- penter learned that not all men who joined the force made effi- cient policemen. Their inten- tions may have been above re- proach and their efforts (as far as they went) sincere, but they were temperamentally unsuited for the career they hoped to follow. "We had one fellow who was hopelessly the chief reminisced. "One time when we were investigating a rum- pus at a dance he was ordered to Eland guard at the door, but when I turned around to find him he'd gone! He was away down at the back of the lot; his explanation was that he thought he'd catch the offend- ers down there! Another time this same man managed to handcuff himself to his desk- you can see his potential as an officer was pretty limited." But Jim Carpenter must have had all the right qualities and characteristics of becoming a top notch member of the force. In 1944 the incumbent chief, George Harvey, advanced him to sergeant. In 1956 he was ap- pointed Lethbridge's first police staff sergeant, which in this case was the closest in rank to the chief. "The population then was almost double what it had been when I first joined and Chief Harvey realized the importance of developing the force to meet the needs of the community the chief said. "In January 1957 I was promoted to the rank of Inspector who as- s u m e s more responsibilities, and Sgt. Coupland took over my past. Unfortunately a short time later Chief Harvey became ill and I was moved to acting chief. But Chief Harvey died in March of that year I was atppci'jited chief constable in Oct. 1957, the post I've occupied sincG then. You might be in- terested in knowing that when I became chief my salary was ?500, plus car allowance and uniforms. The strength of the force at that time was 32 men, but I was authorized to expand it to 39 men. This didn't in- clude stenographers and office help." Since becoming chief, Jim Carpenter has seen many changes both social and econo- mic in the city and these changes of course reflect on the policeman's role. JAMES H. CARPENTER by Ed Finlay. Book Review No veneration for footballers "The Plastic Orgasm" by La Verne Barnes (McClelland and Stewart, 1W pages, ANYONE who wishes to be- lieve thai Ihe people as- sociated with professional foot- ball in Canada are worthy of something approaching venera- tion would be well advised to slay strictly away from this book. LnVeme Barnes, wife of Emery Barnes who was once a B.C. Lions player, paints the whole works in rather unlovely colors. Al I be management end there is greedy nithlcssncss. A buck is always more imporlanl than n boy. The doctors and trainers who work for the club subscribe I" Ihe same' phil- osophy and arc prepared lo wreck a player's body for a win. Players are slobs who steal, wallow in sexual and al- coholic orgies, take drugs, and arc absolute bores. Media peo- ple who follow the game sub- scribe to pretty much the same "standards" and are gen- erally little guys oozing self- importance. There are the women whose interest in foot- ball players is mostly sexual. And the fans who flock to the stands are blood-thirsty goons. What makes Ihig all so pathe- tic is the phoninuss the plas- tic nature of il all. This is es- pocially so with regard lo the game in Canada where an Am- erican enterprise is passed off as Canadian. Mrs. Barnes it very disillusioned with Canada. Racism is here; places like Re- ginn arc honkie; Canadian girls are disgusting in their de- sire to be had by professional athletes American girls are sharper because they arc ac- customed to athletic heroes from an early age. And have a look at those doctors who don't want their names mentioned in books or newspapers lest that be construed as advertising but whose photographs often ap- pear in the promotional mate- rial of football clubs! Emery Barnes seems to have written the first chapter. The second chapter sounds like him loo. LaVcrnc Barnes hasn't too much to say on her the book has an abundance of quotation marks. 1 wasn't sure who was expressing himself or herself many limes but I did grasp that this is a great put- down job. DOUG WALKER. "We now have a force of 56 which is 1.4 men for every population. This figure is lower than the national average but industrial towns require more policing than farming commu- nities. In large transient areas more police are required also than in settled communities such as Lcthbridge. Our big problem here is with Indians who come into lown and have little to do and can't quite cope with urban conditions. Speak- ing rather generally however, we don't have a hostile popula- tion to deal with and there is no particular rejeclion of the police here." What about the young people and the drug problem in our city? "Well, with the proximity to the border there is trafficking but I think perhaps because of .this we catch more kids. What is needed to understand and cope with the situation is a broader education program in- volving parents, teachers, the ministerial society and the po- lice. But we don't feel that the young people resent our con- cern." Chief Carpenter has some in- teresting thoughts on the chang- ing role of the police in our so- ciety. He sees one role as that of a referral agency, where people can go to police for help and be directed to the proper agency equipped lo handle '-he particular problem. He also sees Ihe need for Ihe police lo move closer lo Ihe community in their policing. As he pointed out, early on in police methods all policies kept absolute- ly secret the community didn't know what Ihe police were doing or "why Ihey were Ihere "I believe the commu- nity should be notified of any policv well in advance so thai there Is a belter rela- tionship between what we are doing and wh-t is expected of he explained. But with society advancing so rapidly, Chief Carpenter stresses that future police re- cruits will eventually have to have belter than a high school education to qualify for ser- vice. "Posl secondary educalion is very much needed loday for police officers." he slated em- phatically. "There are some colleges teaching law enforce- ment courses and police sci- ences, bul I'm convinced lhal the Iradilional arts course with a good background in history, psychology, English, sociology and so forth will become a nec- essary requirement for future police. We have our own. spe- cial seminars here dealing with various facets of criminolopiy but these will always be neces- sary and should not attempt to take the place of a sound, basic education. I also believe lhal law enforcement courses should be taught in school so that stu- dents can become familiar with the criminal code laws under which we live." Asked about "paid inform- ers" in society, and the con- troversy over capital punish- ment, Chief Carpenter fell lhat it was difficult to be complete- ly rigid in either case. "I Ihink I would vote for the return of capital punishment especially for syndicated crime------Mafia he answered slowly "it can be a deterrent. As for paid informers, well, I think they are needed in many instances." Although Chief Carpenter's spare lime has, over the years been limited he nonetheless has been able to develop several "outside" interests. He's be- come something of an amateur archaeologist affiliating wilh Ihe local society a few years ago. He also is an ardent philatelist, and has been invited to speak about his hobby to others who wish to become interested in this fascinating subject. He has long been associated closfiiy with the church, serving on the Commitlee of Stewards of First United for 19 years and later at McKillop United. Early on he did play cricket and a little golf bul Ihese activities have been sidelined by other inter- ests. In 1932 Jim Carpenter mar- ried Joan Glanville. Th e y have five children, and now nine grandchildren. "The wife of a policeman lives a pretty lonely the chief observed, "she never knows when he is coming home for meals and she has to adjust to his routine whether she likes it or nol. Fortunately my wife had interests of her own outside her family. She kept up her music and eventual- ly got her LRSM." Now Chief Carpenter is to re- tire. He's bought himself a trailer and he and his wife are going to do some travelling, but they intend to "sec Canada first." Chief Carpenter, with his quiel authority has made a sig- nificant contribution to IjOth- bridge and of course will be missed. Indeed, upon reflection, a great many people will be very glad he did not become a surgeon. ffi, neighbors! ADDICTS of the square-eyed monster, while twitching through the channels fro' yet another football game last Sunday, may have stumbled across a fairly on the arresting topic of the University of Lethbridge. They may even have noticed thai, notwithstanding the oft-proclaimed richness of the English language, the program bears the same ti- tle as IKs particular column. I am not sure why. But whatever the reason, and however even preposter- nu'k'bt seem, I feel I must officially inform my readers (both of them) that I have nothing to do with the TV program, and vice-versa. Now, having done that little duty, per- haps I can contribute my two cents' worth to a topic that seems to have engaged the attention of quite a number of people re- cently, this business of lrar.sfcrability. I recognize thcl too much may have been said about it already, but I have a some- what different perspective. It is not one of mindless support for a particular univer- sity position. Nor do I intend to contribute any drops to the gradually widening pool of tears that is being shed over those prec- ious students who make up our classes- end our budgets; that particular concern is developing distinctly emetic properties. No, my point of view is that of a lax- payer, one who is fed up lo the leeth with all the existing ways of wasting my tax dollars, and who wishes to protest the in- vention of new ones. I know where I speak, when I say that the current furore over Iransferability is blatantly manufactured, and from some pretty shabby Ingredients. First is the per- nicious snobbery that pervades our educa- tional system, the notion thai children en- gaged in so-called "academic" studies are superior to those in oilier programs. This contemplible fiction, fostered by teach- ers in high school and students in univer- sity, is one of Ihe reasons why a college that has a university section regards it the brightest jewel in its crown, and one that lacks such a section will do almost anything to get one, or a reasonable fac- simile. Another ingredient is the "my son, Uia syndrome, the sad determination of socially aspiring parents to drive their kids into and through programs that will reflect parents. The third, ingredient, the catalyst that has made the other two evils work with such damage to the educational system, is an irrational no- tion of a previous minister of educalion, who did not understand the relationships between universities and other educational institutions, but who was damned well de- termined that univei'sitics would deliver on at least ono of his ill-advised political promises. Putting all this together, you have the current, ludicrious situation, in which the colleges are clamoring for the right to tell the universities who they shall admit and at what level. This is a policy whereby someone with admission credentials unac- ceptable to any recognized university, spends two years doing whatever he and a college adviser think may be good for him. and then may demand from a uni- versity the same degree credit the college itself would deny him if it had a university section. This idea is simply stupid. And, quite apart front lhat, it would proclaim to every other university on this continent that Al- berta university courses are no more than college level, that our university professors are not better qualified than college in- structors, and thai admission standards in this province are the same as those for colleges. Such a proclamation would not only make Albsrla universities a laughing stock wherever higher education is proper- ly understood, but also it would result, within a very few years, in denial of ad- mission of Alberta graduates to any res- pectable graduate school anywhere. I do not expecl the promoters of this In- ane proposal to worry about the reputation of Alberta universities or the admissability of students to graduate school, and I don't care whether they do or not. But I will be eternally damned if I wish to see a dime of my taxes go to support their noa- The Voice Of One -By DR. FRANK S. MORLEY Work, blessing or curse? rVWi Report on the Committee on Youth faces the grim facts of unemploy- ment, misemployment, and menl which extends not only to the un- trained but the specialists as certain work becomes obsolete. Thousands of young Ca- nadians who are qualified to work, want to work, and are eager to invest their lives, will be unable to find a fulfilling job. The report regards this as personal tra- gedy which will place an increasing num- ber of young persons in the coils of the poverty and welfare cycles. The Atlantic Monthly for October has a grim study of work on the assembly line and in corpora- tions, studies in the dehumanization which have engaged thousands of psychologists and been the theme of tens of thousands of books. Now it has become popular to decry work altogether as a puritan ethic which no longer is necessary to an age of over production and automation. Others- maintain that man is a working animal but most men are condemned to work at jobs they don'l like. A study of men on an automobile assembly line revealed that only one man in ten did nol dislike his job. A breakdown of the plant brought the same joy that an unexpected holiday brought to school children. Norbert Wiener in his study of cybernetics and society con- tends that a man must lose his dignity on an assembly line where he can only use one millionth part of his brain. On the other hand I have been astonished at the number of men who retired from work in good health and were dead in a year or two. So far from work being a holdover from an outworn puritan ethic man is na- turally a worker, a creator, and without work man lives without purpose. Joshua Lederberg, Nobel prize winner in medicine, fears the boredom thai will come as a re- sult of automation when "work may be- come the prerogative of a chosen elite." Total leisure is total boredom. Grandma Moses said lhal she didn't care a bil for the fame that came to her for painting. She didn't painl for fame, but for her own sheer enjoyment If she hadn't painted, she wuld have raised chickens, and if she hadn't done that, she would have rented a room in the city and given pancake suppers. Idleness was just impos- sible to contemplate. Even Sigmund Freud, who was critical enough of his society, said lhal laying stress on (lie importance of work had a greater cffecl Ihan any oilier technique of living in binding the indivi- dual more closely to reality. The most fa- mous of monastic orders had the motto "To work is to pray." II is very easy to become romantic about work in the past as contrasted with this mechanical age. When you read about the past you find that the lot of most men was brutish and the life span short. The guilds of the Middle Ages were one of the few places where a worker found personal satisfaction in work as well as social se- curity, welfare, and fellowship. It is a greal pily that unions today do not have more of the fealures of the old guilds. On the other hand it is impossible to become romantic about the assembly line produc- tion. A listener recalls healing a bishop eloquently describing to a working class audience in England that he worked for at least sixteen hours a day and asked for nothing better. "If I were a said one workshop foreman in the audience, "I would work sixteen hours a day too, but eight hours of my kind of work a day is quite enough for anybody." Just the same Dr. Robert L. Kahn in a study of Ameri- can workers found that 80 per cent, if they had so much money lhal ttey did not need to work, would still continue working and Dr. Kahn says that his finding is true of most occupations and ages. Man needs to work and the threat of a leisure society is a most ominous problem for the future. Nor is Ihe increase of production to "im- prove the standard of living" a satisfac- tory goal. A standard of living is much more than a glul of goods, ar.d lo have a hundred limes as much does not mean one is a hundred times happier. It is fact tiiat in the depression families were happier, more tightly bound together, with less friction and fewer separation and divor- ces. One of the striking features of the affluent society is its sadness, suicides, drug addiction, sexual pornography, and coholism. It is a crazy world where tha ultimate symbol and chief end of produc- tion is to create an Hiroshima and an Amchitka, the waters polluted and the air filled with smog, the forests plundered, and the natural life destroyed, thousands are killed on the highways, and billions spent on arir.anents and getting to the mocn while millions live in slums or conditions of starvation. The problems ot technology could be solved if man had the brains and the moral values for solution, but alas, man continues to be the same evil mon- ster he has always been. Fodder for fillers 1VIY mother, who resides in Regina sub- scribes to UK Saturday edition ot The Lethhridge Herald. She says she reads ev- erything on the editorial pages, including Ihe fillers. Tliis habit of reading these pieces has given her the notion that anyone who comes into contact with me is fodder for Hy Dong Walker fillers. Mother visited with us a few weeks ago and when 1 introduced Ken Mills to her at church, she warned him to be care- ful what he said or he would wind up in a filler. "That's the last place I'd want to said Mr. Mills, retreating but not soon enough.