On the night of Jan. 7, Brian Sicknick died after fulfilling an oath taken to protect the freely elected representatives of this country from harm. Though I’m not a police officer, as a doctor, I too know what it means to take an oath to protect those who need protection. I am deeply saddened by Mr. Sicknick’s death and hope that those who knew and loved him may find some comfort from the terrible grief of his passing.

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An American flag flies at half staff in remembrance of U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick above the Capitol Building in Washington on Friday. Sicknick died from injuries sustained as President Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol. Patrick Semansky/Associated Press

To serve as a protector of the community is an ancient duty reflective of a deep truth: We need protection. We need protection in a hard world rife with suffering. We will never stop needing protection, and the role of protectors of society must always be sacred.

The greatest traditions of the United States of America have always aspired to honor this deeper truth. Mr. Sicknick died defending America’s highest aspirations, and this loss cannot be repaired. Instead, what we must do, collectively and individually, is decide how to recover.

We must decide how we can enact the dream that Brian Sicknick died defending. Now is the time for those of us who believe, like Lincoln, that “government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth” to ensure that the sacrifices of our fellow Americans, like Brian Sicknick, will not have been in vain.

Spencer Powers
Buxton

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