In 1954, Texas Children’s was founded to serve all children – regardless of their race, religion, creed or ability to pay. Jim Abercrombie and Leopold Meyer set this clear intention as the guiding principle of Texas Children’s, and we have lived by those principles each and every day. At our core, we are an inclusive organization that prides ourselves on welcoming everyone – patients, families, providers and staff. We recognize our diversity and that our melting pot of cultures, religions, races and genders woven together is what creates our One Amazing Team.
The news of George Floyd’s death and the protests that ensued caused me to reflect on so many rights that I deeply value. The same rights and principles that we are blessed to live by at Texas Children’s. I acknowledge that as a white man, it is difficult for me to truly understand the pain and fear that our communities of color are experiencing – however, I still feel the pain and believe I, and each of you, have a role in ending this injustice.
It is not easy to admit that in 2020 racism is still prevalent, but it is the truth and we must all be courageous in confronting this reality. What we are seeing today is not a mere response to the tragic and wrongful deaths we have read about in the news, but it is a reaction to the lack of equality and justice that has been prevalent in American society for hundreds of years. I wholeheartedly believe that a threat to justice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
This is a turning point for our country and we must each do our part to keep us on the right track. It is our responsibility to speak up, teach our children right from wrong, lean in and have the difficult conversations, call our representatives in Congress, and LEAD. Just as Martin Luther King, Jr. did during the Civil Rights Movement, we must let our voices be heard, but we must do so without violence. The spirit of people is a sensitive part of human nature that we must nurture and not trample on.
We live in the greatest country in the world, and I choose to believe that we can rise above and create the world that we want our children to live in. I recognize that this is not an easy task but I challenge you all to take the example you are setting at Texas Children’s and spread it throughout your communities. Texas Children’s is an incredibly special place to work and it is because of the pride and respect we have in believing that our differences unite us and make us stronger. The same is true for our country. No matter your race or ethnicity, we must all work together to peacefully call out injustice and end bigotry and racism. What are you doing to help somebody today?