June 30, 2016 7:56 AM EDT


America needs more humanity at the center of its citizenship and leadership. Our country is more diverse than ever, yet far too divided. With so many Americans longing to feel united, I am optimistic we can bridge these divides, because we already have what it takes. As citizens, we can choose compassion and put others first by serving our communities before we serve ourselves. As leaders, we can lead with our hearts, acting with empathy and civility as we exercise the courage of our convictions. These virtues are usually abundant in the aftermath of tragedies. But we must not reserve our collective compassion and courage for moments of crisis. As America’s story inevitably changes, our enduring soul, the thread that connects us, will always be our shared humanity–all we must do is summon it, every day.

Schultz is the chairman and CEO of Starbucks

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