Dan Wallace invited me to comment on his piece. Dan’s reminiscence in “Three Giants of Immunology at USC” is fascinating and instructive. Readers should appreciate that Dan Wallace is a role model in our rheumatologic community. He authored several textbooks, including DuBois’ Lupus Erythematosus, inheriting this from his mentor and partner; has held many leadership positions; received humanitarian and other awards; and distinguished himself as a practitioner and academician. He reminds us how important our rheumatologic “family history” is. It is valuable to recall and honor those whose seminal contributions advanced our art and science and profoundly influenced us, like Ed DuBois and George Friou. Dan also reminds us of a shameful time when prejudice and anti-Semitism were open and tolerated, and when opportunities for minorities were limited by social bias and institutional policy. I was raised with the Talmudic precept of “repairing the world” (“tikun olam”), trying to make the world a bit better. Perhaps that’s the lesson from Dan’s essay—that we not only recognize those who preceded and helped us, but also that we aspire to do good as physicians, rheumatologists, and members of a community; that we not ignore our broader responsibilities to overcome hate, promote tolerance, and strive for social justice.
Richard S. Panush, MD
Professor of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology
Keck School of Medicine
University of Southern California