BATON ROUGE – LSU coach Les Miles used his opportunity in front of coaches at the annual Louisiana High School Coaches Association meeting today to address the tragedy that struck the Baton Rouge community last weekend when three law enforcement members were murdered by a man from Kansas City, Mo.
Miles annually talks to the organization, usually opening up with an update on the summer activities of his family. Today was different, as Miles used the first five minutes of his time with the coaches to address change in our society and what his personal plan is for doing more in support of that change.
“I want to make positive change and it starts first me with and how I see things,” Miles said. “I want to treat people better, I want to embrace differences and I’m prepared to have a respect for opinion, respect for life obviously, and compassion for people.
“My emotions are worn on my sleeve. I think we need to connect on family and we need to agree that violence is never an agent for change, not in today’s society. We have a way to affect change that doesn’t require violence.
“The men that were lost this past week were giants. They were community servants. I was fortunate to be around and watch real leadership. Watch our sheriff, colonel, mayor, and our governor especially, do the right thing for our community.
“I want to represent and challenge us all, that when you stand in front of your class or your team, that if you don’t start first with who we are as people and how we connect and what our jobs are, I just think that’s the thing to do.
“We should be challenged to do just the things that we can do. Just the things that we can do; be positive where we are and seek change where we stand. My opportunity today was to speak in front of the great high school coaches of Louisiana, and I wasn’t going to by this opportunity to talk about this because I was personally challenged that, ‘if you don’t say something, then what are you doing to affect change?’”
On Tuesday, Miles spent time with members of the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Department as well as visiting Baton Rouge City Police headquarters. He’s also visited the hospitals where two East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s deputies remain after being shot on Sunday.
*LSU ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS