Dr. Brian Williams was on duty when he sprang into action Thursday night. A trauma surgeon, the results of the Dallas shooting reached his doors at Parkland Memorial Hospital.
“I stand with the Dallas Police Department. I stand with law enforcement all over this country,” he said at a press conference with other emergency personnel.
Despite the fact that he is an experienced surgeon in his field and deals with heavily injured people routinely, Williams said that Thursday night affected him deeply, as the victims were officers and the country was already dealing with the deaths of two black men in Louisiana and Minnesota. Williams said his sadness was for both of those men as well as the officers.
Williams said he understood the “distrust of law enforcement” but argued that law enforcement was “not the problem.” “The problem,” he said, “is the lack of open discussions about the impact of race relations in this country.”
Williams had an emotional plea after the hectic events on Thursday, saying, “I think about it every day that I was unable to save those cops when they came here that night. It weighs on my mind constantly. This killing, it has to stop.”
Williams denounced the killing of the two black men as well as the killing of five public servants. “We have to come together and end all of this.”
Later in the press conference, Williams and the officer on the panel with him spoke about their personal relationships with race and policing.
Williams said he understood the angst that black Americans feel when coming into contact with officers, but that it was not cause for disrespect or violence against officers. He also mentioned how he worked toward normalizing relationships between black Americans and officers by doing small things like buying ice cream for policemen in front of his daughter.
The officers on the panel praised Williams for his efforts, as well as his decision to jump immediately into action when he saw that the Dallas officers had been shot.
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