The following message was released to the Baylor community on June 3:
I am deeply saddened to write you today. I am old enough to have lived through national crises and moments of profound national introspection. These junctures in history have deep effects on us as citizens, neighbors, friends, and fellow human beings. We search for answers to questions we would rather not ask, and we live with a heightened sense of uncertainty and fear. We have reached another one of these moments in the wake of the senseless deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor.
I am reaching out today to share my own heartache over these tragic events. As the surrogate father of an African son, I have experienced concern for him and his safety. Such emotions are grounded in a reality we are often reluctant to acknowledge. If we hold true to the ideals of America -- of opportunity, of justice, and of equity -- then all of us must stand for change. If we also hold true to the teachings of our faith traditions -- of love, of mercy, and of forgiveness -- we are also motivated to act in a manner that would please our creator. Just as hate begets hate, love begets love, as called upon by God.
As a child of the 1960’s and ‘70’s, I can attest that we have come a long way as a country. We still have a long way to go to fulfill the vision of our founders and to build a just, equitable, and inclusive society. To my Baylor Family, I say this: we can be part of making it so. Like our country, we have come a long way. Like our country, we have progress yet to make. In the past days, we have heard the cries of many, including many in our school family, and I regret that we are unable to come together in person. This past year we celebrated the fortieth anniversary of the graduation of Baylor’s first African-American student. We will listen carefully to our alumni, students, parents, and faculty of color as we work to move Baylor forward.
In closing, I would like to share a lesson I have learned from my family’s fight against cancer. I have realized that, with cancer, there exists great equality. Regardless of one’s religion, gender, age, nationality, socio-economic status, or race, we share common bonds of fear and humility but also of hope and love. I have learned that difference disappears when we reduce our focus to the basic human condition, and that is my prayer today…that we might search for the common threads of the human condition and that we might commit to the premise of equal justice for all. Like fighting cancer, fighting injustice is deeply challenging; indeed, racism and discrimination are moral cancers. But, let us be resolved to be part of the solution, from how we conduct ourselves in our most private moments to standing up for justice as an ideal meant for all.
Scott Wilson "75