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GLOBAL MOVEMENT FOR A CULTURE OF PEACE

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Mothers Acting Up
an article by Dee Montalbano

Just a few months ago, as a retired grandma, I was finally getting around to writing my book. Now I spend my days marching in the streets, calling my representatives, participating in conference calls with major peace organizations, and best of all, doing this with a wonderful group of women known as Mothers Acting Up.

Mothers Acting Up was started in December 2001 by four moms in Boulder, Colorado. They saw a need to make it easy for mothers and others to stand up and speak out on behalf of the world's children. Today the web based organization has over 500 members nation wide. With a click of the mouse, busy folks can not only learn more about programs that affect children, but they can also move quickly to make their voices heard in Congress and the White House.

MAU's voice is exuberant and joyful in favor of peace and in promoting the well-being of all children. On October 26, MAUs marched in Washington on their stilts, and on Mother's Day, MAUs across the country will be marching, on and off stilts, in their yearly parade. This year the parade will call attention to the world wide AIDS crisis and will come after some dedicated MAUs have visited Africa to witness that pandemic first hand.

MAU headquarters is a kitchen table in an old house in Boulder, Colorado. The five MAUs who guide the organization meet there weekly, and in the midst of laughter and muffins, they become a catalyst for empowering mothers and others to take action on behalf of children.

Clearly, my retirement has taken on an entirely new look. Are you ready to declare yourself a MAU? Take a look at our website.

DISCUSSION

Question(s) related to this article:


A seed for thought for a more effective peace movement, (Ideas begin at the kitchen table)

Millions of women are not registered to vote, How can they be engaged in political activism on behalf of children?

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LATEST READER COMMENT:

In her article Dee describes how MAU headquarters is a kitchen table in an old house in Boulder, Colorado, where five mothers meet weekly to guide the organization in the midst of laughter and muffins.  It makes me think how ideas often begin at the kitchen table.

Here is an idea sent in to CPNN by Doug Woodward, who calls it Waging Peace.  What do people think of it?

In a country so fixed on violence - in our movies, TV, video games, news media, sports, and more - can the U.S. find another path to solving conflict other than crushing the other side just because it can? At the risk of being overly simplistic, I would like to plant a seed for thought.
If, instead of registering (that word may soon change to "drafting") our youth to "fight" for their country, suppose we registered them to "make peace" for our country instead?
If every young person - sometime between age 18 and 25 were required to spend six months in a country that was considered "unfriendly", or "cool" toward the U.S., living, not isolated in a hotel or American enclave, but living with a family of ordinary means, sharing tasks of their daily life, eating meals with them, learning their language - being there primarily to understand rather than help - what would this mean? First, the countries visited would need to reciprocate by sending their own youth to the U.S. and other countries. Second, the youth involved would include everyone, particularly the sons and daughters of each country's highest leaders.

What about the cost? A small fraction of our military budget could pay for such a "friendship" program, with far more effect than all the weapons that now exist.
What dividends could such a "human investment" provide? Consider this. . ...more.


This report was posted on February 2, 2003.