Category Archives: North America

Ajamu Baraka Awarded 2019 US Peace Prize


An announcement from US Peace Memorial

The Board of Directors of the US Peace Memorial Foundation has voted unanimously to award the 2019 US Peace Prize to The Honorable Ajamu Baraka, “whose bold antiwar actions, writings, speeches, and leadership provide an inspiring voice against militarism.”

Michael Knox, Chair of the Foundation, presented the award on September 23 during the forum “A Path to International Peace: Realizing the Vision of the United Nations Charter,” which was held at the Community Church of New York.

In his remarks, Knox said, “Thank you, Ajamu, for your outstanding domestic and international activism to end wars and militarism. We applaud your long and distinguished record of working for social justice, human rights, civil rights, and peace. Many antiwar organizations have benefitted from your innovative leadership and consultation. You are a force in revitalizing the Black antiwar tradition. I believe that Black Alliance for Peace could be the most important new antiwar organization established this century. We want you to know that your efforts are greatly appreciated here and around the world. Thank you for your service.”

In his acceptance, Ajamu said, “I want to thank the US Peace Memorial Foundation, Dr. Michael Knox and the Board of Directors for this great honor and for your faith in me and my work. I accept this award this evening with great honor and humility. I accept not as an individual but as a member of a collective of peace and antiwar activists, many of whom are in this room tonight, who paved the way with their sacrifice, courage and unwavering dedication to the idea that we can live in a world without war. We envision a world where human beings can be free to live liberated from brutality, the madness of state and non-state violence in all forms, from direct military engagements to the war of sanctions. We believe that there is in fact an alternative to the irrationality that we call “modernity” built on conquest, slavery, economic exploitation and ongoing colonial domination. So, I accept this on behalf of those visionaries, on behalf of the Black Alliance for Peace, on behalf of all those who are committed to peace but who understand that there can be no peace without justice, and for justice – we have to struggle to achieve it.”

(Article continued in the column on the right)

Questions related to this article:

Where in the world can we find good leadership today?

(Article continued from the column on the left)

Ajamu Baraka, a Vietnam-era war veteran, is a social justice and human and civil rights activist who was the Green Party’s nominee for Vice President of the United States in 2016. In 1997, he was one of the 300 human rights defenders from around the world who were honored in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the United Nations’ signing of the United Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. In addition to being the national organizer and spokesperson for Black Alliance for Peace, Baraka is also an administrative committee member for the United National Antiwar Coalition and an executive board member of the U.S. Peace Council. For years he has been a force in revitalizing the Black antiwar tradition, an influence on domestic and international education, and an outspoken advocate against the U.S. foreign policy of “humanitarian” intervention and U.S. military presence in other countries. His numerous contributions include giving speeches and interviews, writing articles, providing consultation and leadership, and taking part in delegations and panels.

In addition to receiving the US Peace Prize, our highest honor, Mr. Baraka has been designated a Founding Member of the US Peace Memorial Foundation. He joins previous US Peace Prize recipients David Swanson, Ann Wright, Veterans For Peace, Kathy Kelly, CODEPINK Women for Peace, Chelsea Manning, Medea Benjamin, Noam Chomsky, Dennis Kucinich, and Cindy Sheehan. Nominees considered by the Board in 2019 included Erica Chenoweth, Stephen D. Clemens, Thomas C. Fox, Bruce K. Gagnon, Jewish Voice for Peace, National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth, Sally-Alice Thompson, Women’s March on the Pentagon and World BEYOND War. You can read about the antiwar/peace activities of the recipients and all nominees in our publication, the US Peace Registry.

The US Peace Memorial Foundation directs a nationwide effort to honor Americans who stand for peace by publishing the US Peace Registry, awarding an annual US Peace Prize, and planning for the US Peace Memorial in Washington, DC. These projects help move the United States toward a culture of peace by honoring thoughtful and courageous Americans and U.S. organizations that have taken a public stand against one or more U.S. wars or who have devoted their time, energy, and other resources to finding peaceful solutions to international conflicts. We celebrate these role models to inspire other Americans to speak out against war and to work for peace.

United States and Canada: International Day of Peace


A survey by CPNN

Here are 269 actions for the International Day of Peace located in all the United States as well as 11 actions in Canada in six provinces. In order to save space, one is described in detail for each state and province and internet links are provided for the others.
The actions were listed in Google during the week of September 21-28 under the key words “International Day of Peace” and “Journée Internationale de la Paix” or were listed on the following websites:
Campaign Nonviolence
International Cities of Peace Facebook
Event map for the International Day of Peace.

In addition to the above, there were several hundred singing events listed on the websites of One Day One Choir and Montessori schools singing for peace, but it was not possible to distinguish events from 2019 from events in previous years.

Many celebrations took up the official United Nations theme for the day, Climate Action for Peace.
Here are excerpts from the articles.

*** CANADA ***


CALGARY : Ahead of Saturday’s UN International Day of Peace, the John de Chastelain Peace Studies Initiative at Mount Royal University announced the recipient of the 2020 Calgary Peace Prize. Stephanie Nolen is a veteran foreign correspondent who has reported from more than 80 countries around the world. She is a seven-time winner of the National Newspaper Award and a six-time winner of the Amnesty International Media Award for her coverage. She is the author of 28 Stories of AIDS in Africa, which won the PEN Courage Prize, and Promised the Moon: The Untold Story of the First Women in the Space Race. She served as bureau chief for the Globe and Mail in South Asia, Africa and Latin America.


SUMMERLAND : A community event to celebrate and share the importance of PEACE we will have a performance, art installation, music, and moments of meditation.



WINNIPEG : The Rotary Club of Winnipeg Peace Builder Committee and Rotary 5550 World Peace Partners is celebrating 10 years of waging peace by inspiring, facilitating and nurturing positive peace, goodwill, and understanding with no sign of slowing down. As in years past, the Peace Days Festival has brought together a number of committed Venue Participants who are doing their part to raise awareness and making a commitment to act all in the name of promoting positive peace. This year’s Peace Days Festival will start with a multi-faith Meditation for Peace event that will guide participants through a moment of meditation and unity dedicated to the promotion of peace and the creation of a non-violent society hosted by Bishop emeritus Noel Delaquis. . . Events throughout the city will continue to create the momentum needed to ensure everyone can experience peace regardless of who they are and where they come from. Through the Winnipeg Connector Partnership and the engagement of newcomers in peace, the Peace Days Festival and Peace Days 365 will help us achieve an equitable, accepting and just society, nation and world. The Peace Days Festival is about:“Bringing people from all nations together to create a culture of Peace and building self-confidence for equal opportunity, justice and PEACE.


MONCTON : Join us at the RCMP Memorial at Riverfront Park to walk downtown in support of Peace in our community. This event is FREE and open to rotarians and non-rotarians including kids and pets. We ask Rotarians to proudly wear the Rotary Logo and all others to please wear something that represents peace to you. Did you know that Rotary helped write the charter for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Saturday September 21st is International Peace Day and so we will walk in support of continued peace education and initiative


MISSISSAUGA : On the International Day of Peace and also celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Peace Stone here in Richard’s Memorial Park and the 40th anniversary of the mundialization of the City of Mississauga, the 2019 World Citizenship in Action Award will be presented to the founder of Peace Magazine, Science for Peace and Project Save the World, Metta Spencer, and messages of peace and inspiring music will be shared by The Rev Elvis, Angela Turone, Christina Melanie, Kinder Kids International Preschool, the Raging Grannies and others. Please join Mayor Bonnie Crombie and Registrar of World Citizens in Canada, Dorothea Sheasby as we also raise the Earth Flag beside the Peace Stone for the first time.



SAINT-LAURENT : The traditional ceremony for the International Day of Peace was held in Saint-Laurent on September 19 at Parc Beaudet, also called the “Parc de la Paix”, with the participation about fifty students from Émile-Legault High School and the International School of Learners. The audience was also made up of some 20 key players in the borough, including Mayor Alan DeSousa and Council members. Organized in partnership with the Committee of Social Organizations of Saint-Laurent and the Baha’i community of Montreal, the event was placed under the theme of climate action, decreed by the United Nations. At the end of this ceremony where the testimonies followed each other, each participant made the commitment to take concrete action to fight against climate change.



HOMER : We Rotary celebrated the International Day of Peace


SELMA : 20 Million Women Strong is leading a Lift Every Voice March highlighting the International Day of Peace with a focus on the Earth, Women, Children and Families. We will gather at noon and March across the historic Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma at 1pm on September 21st.



LITTLE ROCK : Peace Week was celebrated in Little Rock.


TUCSON : Jam2Grow and the Drum-Up for Peace project are organizing a Drum Festival on International Day of Peace 2019. Please Join us to feel the drum rhythms with a dedicated group of percussionists and peace lovers. All skills level are welcome to join us. Children allowed to participate with their family.


RIVERSIDE : Taking action on climate change will be the theme of a celebration of the International Day of Peace to be held at 11:45 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, on the Ben Franklin stage near Riverside City Hall, 3900 Main St.
The Inland Communities Fellowship of Reconciliation has organized the free event, which will feature the Riverside Resistance Revival Chorus and speakers Benny Nielsen and Mohammad Hoda, who are connecting climate to unrest in the world, according to a press release.
Students from Norte Vista High School will participate, and Margie Akin, a member of the Inland Communities Fellowship of Reconciliation, will also speak at the event.
“We wanted to acknowledge how connected climate is to peace,” said Marilyn Sequoia, one of the organizers, in the press release. “Drought can create a shortage of food, sparking mass migrations and wars between people. So solving the climate crisis is quite connected to peace.”
A coalition of other organizations will be part of the annual event, including Glocally Connected, Brady United, the Riverside Interfaith Council, 350 Riverside, the Sahaba Initiative and California Interfaith Power and Light.

ENCINITAS – Hands of Peace
LOS ANGELES – Pax Christi
LOS ANGELES – Dance for Peace
OAKLAND – Ogawa Plaza
OAKLAND – Asian Center
SAN DIEGO – Franciscan Peace Connection
SAN DIEGO – Peace Resource Center
SAN DIEGO – Pax Christi
SAN FRANCISCO- Mindful Littles
SAN FRANCISCO – Balboa Avenue
SAN RAFAEL – Mill Valley Seniors
SAN RAFAEL – concert by Indie B


EVERGREEN : The 2019 theme draws attention to the importance of combating climate change as a way to protect and promote peace throughout the world. We will circle the labyrinth, share thoughts of and music about peace, and observe five minutes of silence. Bring a flashlight and dress warmly. Camp chairs and finger food snacks are welcome



MILFORD : Milford Speaks Out (MSO), in partnership with the Milford Public Library, will host a World Peace Day event on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019 at 2 pm at Lisman Landing, 37 Helwig Street in Milford. This day is observed by nations across the world for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace. Milford will join in this world-wide event by re-dedicating a peace pole that was donated to the city a number of years ago by the Montessori School.



WILMINGTON : On Sept. 21, International Peace Day, join us at AIDS Walk Delaware. Walk at Dravo Plaza, Riverfront Wilmington. Register a team or start your own page to raise funds for statewide HIV/AIDS services. Channel your ‘peace qi’ to advance HIV awareness, reduce stigma, and endorse HIV-informed community health for all Delawareans.


WASHINGTON : Hostelling International (HI) USA will host its 9th Annual DC Peace Conference on September 21 from 10:30 am to 2 pm at Friends Meeting of Washington DC. A celebration of UN International Peace Day and HI USA Sleep for Peace Campaign, the event aims to raise awareness about food insecurity in DC and to inspire attendees to be part of the solution. Our highly knowledgeable speakers will lead panel discussions and Q&A sessions about these topics: food apartheid, short-term and long-term solutions to food insecurity, food system changes in DC, food justice advocacy, and urban farming.

WASHINGTON – Alliance for Peacebuilding
WASHINGTON – Rally at Capitol
WASHINGTON – White House vigil


BRADENTON : The Louise R. Johnson K-8 School of International Studies is taking part in their first Peace Day celebration Friday, ahead of the International Day of Peace observed worldwide on September 21st. Students and staff started out the morning in the courtyard singing and reading student written essays. “Peace day for me resembles a world of peace where everyone can live happy and together,” said Yeriel Rodriguez who is in eighth grade. The students have recently been studying peace in the classroom. “It’s about spreading that peace and joy throughout our school and if we can get it through our school, then that leads out to our community so it’s about bringing that peace and joy,” said Principal Anthony Losada.

FORT MYERS, FL – billboard
FORT MYERS, FL – school
ORLANDO – film festival
ORLANDO – global peace week
SARASOTA – Mindful Choice
SARASOTA – Peace Center


ATLANTA : AMIS’s 42nd Annual International Student and Scholar Welcome Concert and Reception will be held from 2-4pm on the International Day of Peace, Saturday, September 21, 2019 at Spelman College. Performance by the Morehouse Glee Club with a reception to follow. This annual event welcomes all international college/graduate students and scholars in the greater Atlanta area and introduces them to AMIS (Atlanta Ministry with International Students) programs and events for the year. AMIS is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote cultural understanding through friendship and hospitality with international students.

ATLANTA – concert


KAUAI : The man with the flowing white beard and big smile was one of about 100 people at the International Day of Peace rally put on by the Interfaith Roundtable of Kauai at Lydgate Park. It included song, poetry and dance as people united to express their hopes for a world without war, without hate, without prejudice.



BOISE : Glocal Partners and the Idaho Peace Coaltion are planning events in Boise for the Campaign Nonviolence 2019,


CHICAGO : Join us for the 41st Anniversary Celebration of Peace Day in Chicago, taking place in Daley Plaza Monday September 23rd noon-1pm, free public event.

CHICAGO – Daley Plaza
CHICAGO – DePaul University
CHICAGO – Neighborhood Peace Circle
CHICAGO – University of St Francis


SOUTH BEND : At the Crest Manor Church of the Brethren, we have a peace pole at our church building, and a second at the First Baptist side of the building. We’re replacing these worm-out poles and dedicating new peace poles with prayer, song and other worship for the Campaign Nonviolence.



CLINTON : For the Campaign Nonviolence 2019, the  Franciscan Peace Center is sponsoring “Which Way to Peace and Justice: A Dialogue About Race, Racism and the Work of Repair” – a presentation by the Rev. Dr. Jennifer Harvey, Professor of Religion at Drake University. Tuesday, September 24 at 7:00 PM at Clinton Community College, 1000 Lincoln Blvd., Clinton, IA

DAVENPORT – Muslim Community
DAVENPORT – Argrow’s House of Healing and Hope


CONCORDIA : Climate Action for Peace Day event on Sunday, September 22, 2019 from 2-4PM – includes prayer, education awareness and fellowship

KANSAS CITY – Buchanon Institute
KANSAS CITY – Peaceworks


LOUISVILLE : At the Drepung Gomang Center for Engaging Compassion, our 5th annual 12 Days Toward Peace 2019 begins with an International Day of Peace event on Saturday, September 21st and ends with our International Day of Nonviolence event on Gandhi’s birthday, October 2nd.

OWENSBORO – music and speakers


LAFAYETTE : On Friday, students at Myrtle Place Elementary in Lafayette gathered on campus for a ceremony where they observed International Day of Peace.This is the second year the French immersion school celebrated the day also known as World Peace Day.The entire student body, 350 pre-K to 5th grade students, gathered on the lawn to create a heart with the French word paix, or peace, written inside.The school choir performed the song “Lean on Me” and students raised a flag to commemorate the day, which is officially celebrated on Sept. 21.

LAFAYETTE – Compassionate Communication


CAMDEN : Children’s House Montessori School teachers, students and families celebrated the International Day of Peace Sept. 20 with a hike at Beech Hill Preserve in Rockport. The day was officially celebrated Sept. 21 this year. They sang songs of peace, learned about the significance of the International Day of Peace and of peace education as part of the Montessori curriculum, and released a monarch butterfly, one of a number hatched in school classrooms. Upon returning to school, students continued to recognize the International Day of Peace by ringing the school bell. This is a tradition that began last year in tribute to the Japanese Peace Bell that is housed at UN Headquarters in New York.



SANDY SPRING : To honor International Day of Peace, our school has come up with an entire week of peace-themed activities!
Monday, Sept. 16 – Remember the giant Peace Chain we made for last year’s Peace Day? It will be put on display in the Dining Hall to kick off our Peace Week activities.
Tuesday, Sept. 17 – The Lower School will present a peace-themed musical performance.
Wednesday, Sept. 18 – Rock the Chalk/Chalk the Walk for Peace: there will be sidewalk chalk available during recess for anyone that wants to write a message for peace on the sidewalk.
Thursday, Sept. 19 – Wear Peace/Share Peace: this is your chance to wear your peace-themed clothing and accessories.
Friday, Sept. 20 – The culminating event for Peace Week will be the installation of an all-school art project in the Dining Hall – a paper peace dove entitled “Hope Is the Thing with Feathers.” To create this dove, every member of the SSFS community is asked to contribute a hope for peace written on a paper feather


(Survey continued in right column)

Question related to this article:

What has happened this year (2019) for the International Day of Peace?

(Survey continued from left column)


BOSTON : For the Tenth Annual celebration of the UN International Day of Peace in Boston, we will gather on the Boston Common (near the Park Street mbta station) from 2 to 4 pm on Sunday 22nd September. We will feature speeches by local peacemakers, dances, music, songs, and children’s activities – many on the “climate action for peace” theme. One song, written nearly thirty years ago, asks how long we can wait to take action on our climate. We will conclude with the reading of the list of violent deaths in the past year and a walk to the nearby garden of peace. Visit our website ( for further information.



TRAVERSE CITY : Veterans for Peace Chapter 50 will meet with the community for a sunrise ceremony on the 21st, followed by the Mayor reading a peace proclamation at our government center, and planting a peace pole at a local park. On the 22nd, we will have a celebration in downtown Traverse City, which will include music and speakers, followed by our 8th annual peace march through and around downtown.

GRAND RAPIDS – Month of Peace


MOORHEAD : The 24 hours of the International Day of Peace are meant to remind us all what binds us together instead of what breaks us apart. That’s why a diverse group of people, including new Americans from across the valley, came together at Trinity Lutheran Church in Moorhead. The day is hosted by Chira Global Development Organization. It provided cultural foods, videos for people to watch and speakers who talked about the current climate of the world.



JACKSON : Reading and peace lesson with pre-school student,


SPRINGFIELD : Every fall we gather to celebrate International Peace Day. Our school joins thousands of Montessori schools in singing “Light a Candle for Peace” for 24 hours. Each school sings this song for several minutes between 10 – 11 local time. On September 20, we invite you to celebrate Peace Day with us. Children will gather at 10:30 am in the school library. Parents are invited to join us.  After singing we will go outside and create a collaborative art piece. If your child does not attend school on Friday, we invite you to bring your child and join us to celebrate. Children and parents should wear white shirts.


UN International Day of Peace
Saturday, Sept. 21, 2019,2-4pm, 501 S. 29th St.
-Rivers to the Sea, Peace Rocks, Music,
-Peace Starts With Me and More



GRAND ISLAND : The Central Nebraska Peace Workers scheduled an event for saturday, september 21 (international day of peace) in afternoon


CONCORD : NH Building a Culture of Peace Forum and NH Peace Action, September 19th. Witness: Family Separation. 7pm at UU Church.

CONCORD – Pizza for Peace


ROCKAWAY : Join New Jersey climate activist and State Assembly candidate Christine Clarke and her team at the Parks Lake Gazebo in Rockaway Township, NJ for a special #LD26Weekends canvass and action launch to commemorate Peace Day! We’ll hear from our candidate and guests, enjoy lunch together (provided) and observe the moment of silence at noon before starting outreach activities to let voters know about her climate-focused campaign for public office. Learn more about her work at



TAOS : Taos, has a full week of climate strike actions and events planned. If you cannot go to the Santa Fe Capital Convergence, join us locally for a rally from 12-6pm, and an action starting at 11am to protest climate injustice and handout fliers for the week of events. We will have signs and Earth flags. Some of us will maintain the public demonstration while others pass out fliers to the local businesses and passersby. Everyone is welcome. This event is nonviolent and held in conjunction with the Campaign Nonviolence Week of Actions, and the Global Climate Strikes.



LAS VEGAS : SHOOTING FOR PEACE is a program for the International Day of Peace spearheaded by global ambassador & former NBA player Jerome “JYD” Williams and NBA Legends. The 12- 3 PM event will include digital educational services, HBCU scholarships, Q & A panel, poetry and essay contests. Also, a Celebrity Basketball Game for an afternoon of entertainment, music and amazing skills. Bringing Communities Together, Promoting Education & Encouraging Young people To Engage In Peaceful Activities.

LAS VEGAS – Peace Vigil


NEW YORK : Peace Walk 2019. Please join the Peace Project, Inc and the Middle Schools Alliance on Saturday, September 21st as we celebrate International Peace Day from 3pm to 4.30pm. Students from all 13 independent schools in the MSA are invited to come together and walk across the Ward’s Island Bridge to Randall’s Island, taking steps and building bridges for peace together. Siblings are welcome – bring the whole family to reconnect with friends and get in step for the coming year!
Schedule of Events:
3-3.10pm: Please meet at East 102nd Street between First Ave and the FDR Drive and look for the flags. We will leave the meeting place by 3.10pm to walk towards Randall’s Island.
3.15pm: Walk as a group towards Randall’s Island in celebration of International Peace Day.
4.15pm: Return back to Manhattan via the same route on the footbridge. Everything will conclude by 4.30pm

NEW YORK – UNITED NATIONS :Peace Day celebrations will take place at the United Nations Headquarters on Friday, 20 September 2019, The Secretary-General will commence the celebration at 9:00am in the Peace Garden by ringing the Peace Bell and observing a minute of silence followed by a Student Observance from 9:30 a.m. till noon organized by the Education Outreach Section of the Department of Global Communications. Approximately 700 high school and college students will have an opportunity to interact with UN Messengers of Peace, along with youth participating via videoconference from the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK).



ASHEVILLE : In recognition of the UN sponsored International Day of Peace on Sept. 21st, Peace Is Possible NC will be hosting Strategy For Peace, Friday evening, Sept. 20th, from 7- 8:30pm, at the North Asheville Public Library at 1030 Merrimon Avenue in North Asheville.
Please join us to learn more about The Prem Rawat Foundation’s Peace Education Program and other ongoing efforts to promote personal peace. The event will feature video presentations focused on local and worldwide efforts being made to help all of us get back in touch with our humanity

ASHEVILLE – Rainbow Community Center


FARGO : The children of Nativity Catholic School, classes from Kindergarten to Grade 5, will hear a brief presentation on the background of our Peace Pole, discuss ways in which they can be peace makers, and then finish with prayer at the site of our Peace Pole.


BOWLING GREEN : Peace Day provides a globally shared date for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace. We celebrate this day annually at the Montessori School of Bowling Green and invite you to celebrate as well. As a school community, we will be observing the International Day of Peace on Friday, September 20th this year.”

CINCINNATI – Women Writing for Change


OKLAHOMA CITY : Please join people of all ages who are coming together to participate in the Global Climate Strike on September 20, 2019. This Oklahoma City Climate Strike event will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on the East Lawn of the City Hall Municipal Building in Oklahoma City at 200 North Walker Avenue.


ASHLAND : To honor the strides Ashland has made in the past year to cultivate a culture of peace, the Ashland Culture of Peace Commission is organizing a Global Peace Conference for the International Day of Peace, Saturday, Sept. 21. It’s also ACPC’s fourth anniversary. The conference will feature a variety of local, state, national and international speakers, including keynote speaker Anwarul Chowdhury, the former Under Secretary General and High Representative of the United Nations, and founder of the Global Movement of the Culture of Peace. The theme of the event is “You Are the Flame,” in honor of the first anniversary of the world peace flame in Ashland.

PORTLAND – Hosteling
PORTLAND – Peace Team
PORTLAND – Voices from the Margin


BETHLEHEM : For the International Day of Peace, help us plant an American Dogwood tree and learn about Wangari Maathai as we read Jeanette Winter’s Wangari’s Trees of Peace.



KINGSTON : The Center for Nonviolence & Peace Studies at URI will hold a day of peace activities including; a human peace sign, peace flag making, Inner Peace for International Peace lecture, and a candlelight vigil for joy and peace with Othok Rinpoche.



CHARLESTON: Men Against Domestic Violence USA for Campaign Nonviolence. A Conversation We’ve Neglected: Unmasking Domestic Violence Annual Conference. This conference will bring together domestic violence and law enforcement personel, prosecutors, victim advocates, judges, parole and probation officers, rape crisis workers, researchers, educators and more.


SIOUX FALLS : As part of Campaign Nonviolence the “Just” Peace Group, Spirit of Peace UCC will show the movie “Dallas Buyers Club” for our “Just” Flicks movie night on Sept. 20.


JOHNSON CITY : On Friday, the International Day of Peace was celebrated in the Quad alongside the Native American Festival to spread unity and diversity. “ETSU has a lot of diversity on campus,” Tedra Bennett, assistant to the director of programming and outreach at the Multicultural Center said. “And you know each year the theme differs for international day of peace, but the whole point of it is to create a sense of unity between all of the different ethnicities, cultures and races.” Bennett said that the International Day of Peace has been happening at ETSU for the past five years, and that this year’s theme centered around the topic of climate change. . . . During the day, there was tabling from different organizations across campus that had displays centered around peace. One of the organizations was the ETSU Gospel Choir, and their activity involved students choosing a word associated with peace written on a box and writing what that word meant to them. . . Along with a tabling of different organizations during the day, International Day of Peace also hosted a balloon release and candlelight vigil at Borchuck Plaza later in the evening, with different students from various organizations speaking about what peace meant to them.

MEMPHIS – Campaign Nonviolence
MEMPHIS – Veterans for Peace


AUSTIN : The Austin Chapter of the United Nations Association together with Baha’i Faith Austin are hosting the 3rd annual Pathway to Peace: Feast for Peace event on September 21, 5-8pm. Food and beverages from various cultural origins plus activities and performances for the whole family are all available free with an RSVP.

AUSTIN – Bamboo Festival
AUSTIN – Nonviolent Austin


SALT LAKE CITY : The Gandhi Alliance for Peace will hold an event for Campaign Nonviolence.


BENNINGTON : The Greater Bennington Peace and Justice Center invites the public to join us on Saturday, Sept. 21, the International Day of Peace, at 5:15 pm in front of the Bennington Town Hall, next to the Peace Park. We will begin with a few moments of silence for all victims of war. This will be followed by readings of quotes and short passages from old and new peace activists- from Gandhi to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Come share in these important reflections; if you wish, bring a short reading of your choosing. Following the gathering, we will walk to the Unitarian Meetinghouse on School St. for light refreshments & a 6:30 pm screening of the documentary film, A Bold Peace. The film will be introduced by Dr. Joseph Olejak of the Old Chatham (NY) Quaker Meeting. Admission is free and open to the public.



KILMARNOCK : The Bay Center invites you and your friends and family to celebrate the International Day of Peace (“Peace Day”), which is observed around the world each year on 21 September. Kids will be able to “take a bit of peace home” as we’re offering fun activities for children such as peace rocks, pinwheels for peace, recyclables as art, origami doves, and writing peace wishes. Kids and adults will be invited to participate in a drumming circle and labyrinth walk. Peaceful artwork from Lancaster Middle School art students will be on display.



SEATTLE : A peace vigil will be held on Seattle’s Capitol Hill on Sun., Sept. 22nd from 12:30 to 1:15 p.m. sponsored by Lutheran Peace Fellowship. We’ll meet in the lobby of the Parish Hall at Central Lutheran Church, 1710 11th Ave, Seattle (across from Cal Anderson Park). We’ll gather, introduce ourselves, share a little, and walk to the Park, Broadway or Pine St to hold our vigil. Join us!



EAU CLAIRE : Saturday marked the international day of peace as declared by the United Nations, but one area group made the day local. The community coalition for non-violence in Eau Claire hosted the event at the Eau Claire children’s theatre. Several local activist groups were there to speak with visitors about issues facing the area. Organizer, Rev. Kathy Walker, says the event aims to promote inclusiveness in the community. “We’ve been working in the community,” Walker said. “We got a proclamation from the city council declaring this international day of peace here in Eau Claire so it is part of who we are and we want to spread the word that peace is possible.” Over one hundred people attended the event which included a performance of music and poetry about peace. Organizers say they hope to continue the event in the future.

MADISON – vigil
MADISON – Interfaith Peace Group
MILWAUKEE – Center for Peacemaking
MILWAUKEE – Peace Action
MILWAUKEE – Marquette University


HUNTINGTON : Brown Dog Yoga: Restorative Yoga for peace of the mind, body, and spirit.



CASPER : Thanks to The Table and Casper UU: Unitarian Universalist Community of Casper, local kids and adults will share their thoughts on creating a climate of peace with the Earth, ourselves, and each other. Plus, get an update on how the community is coming together, to using art with The Casper Mural Project and Casper Art Walk to heal, a short Qigong practice, a labyrinth walk and more. To demonstrate new efforts of creating peace with our environment, Range Solar and Wind provide the renewable energy to power the event. Join us on the river, at The Bart Rea Learning Circle within Amoco Park on The Platte River Trails. Sept 21, 1-3.

Campaign Nonviolence Action Week, September 14-22


from Pace e Bene





Every year, Campaign Nonviolence organizes a national week of action across the United States and around the world, built around the third week of September, near Sept. 21st, International Peace Day. For the last five years, we have organized an unprecedented national grassroots movements with actions in every state where people connect the dots between the issues of injustice and violence, including war, poverty, racism and environmental destruction, and hold public events, actions and marches demanding immediate positive social change.

In September, 2018, the Campaign Nonviolence National Week of Action held over 2,660 actions, events and marches across the USA and in 25 countries. This was an historic unprecedented new form of organizing in the US, and we invite you to help us build up this national week of action.

(Article continued in right column)

Question for this article:

The peace movement in the United States, What are its strengths and weaknesses?

(Article continued from left column)

The only way positive social change has happened in the US is from bottom up, people power, grassroots movements of nonviolence, so we invite everyone to join this Campaign Nonviolence National Week of Action Sept. 14-22, 2019, as an organizing tool, to help get the movement moving, to invite people of all walks of life to take to the streets against violence and injustice, and to carry on Dr. King’s vision of what we could become—a new culture of nonviolence. Join the growing Campaign Nonviolence national week of action movement by signing up for an action today, or join with others planning an event. See the full list of action organizers planning an event and reach out to them to join in!

To support these powerful forms of action, Campaign Nonviolence invites people everywhere to:

Take the Campaign Nonviolence Pledge

Host or attend a Nonviolence Training in preparation for your action

Start a Nonviolence Study Group

Spread the word on Facebook  and Twitter

Find tools and resources for Action Week. Get the CNV action toolkit, flyers, graphics, action ideas and more! See below.

Read the 10 Tips for Great Actions and read about some great actions ideas.

Join action organizers around the country as we come together for the next Campaign Nonviolence National Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico August 6-9, 2020 to mark the 75th anniversary or Hiroshima and Nagasaki featuring Martin Sheen, Dolores Huerta, Richard Rohr and more!

Marianne Williamson: U.S. needs Department of Peace


A speech by Marianne Williamson, Democratic candidate for president

Another day, another mass shooting. We grieve for Odessa, Texas, and we grieve for America.

The aftermath of every mass shooting follows a now-routine pattern: Feverish coverage will be followed by politicians and pundits engaging in a predictable conversation about gun-safety legislation. All of which we know by now. Of course, we need universal background checks; we need to close all loopholes; we need to outlaw bump stocks; and we need to outlaw assault weapons and the bullets needed to shoot them. But politicians trotting out various forms of I-will-do-this-or-that neither gets to the heart of the matter nor breaks the logjam that has made this horrific and uniquely American problem so intractable.

It is not just our gun policy but our politics that fails to free us of this insanity. Until we override the nefarious influence of money on our politics, it will not be possible to break the National Rifle Association’s chokehold on our society. It is not the will nor safety of the people but the profits of gun manufacturers that is given primacy in our gun policies. Legislation that establishes public funding for federal campaigns should be the battle cry of our generation.

But even then, Americans will have to look deeper for the causal layers of our epidemic of violence. We will have to look beyond politics. We will have to look at ourselves.

As individuals, Americans are not a violent people, but it is undeniable that we’re a violent culture. Regular mass shootings are not societally normal. And until we face this, the situation will not fundamentally improve.

Most politicians stick to a discussion of symptoms only. Politics should be the conduit for our most expanded conversation about societal issues, not the most superficial one. Conventional politics does not lend itself to a discussion of the deeper issues that plague us. Yet go deeper we must.

America does not just have a gun crisis; it has a cultural crisis. America will not stop experiencing the effects of gun violence until we’re ready to face the many ways that our culture is riddled with violence.

(Continued in right column)

Question related to this article:

Is a U.S. Department of Peace a realistic political goal?

(Continued from left column)

Our environmental policies are violent toward the Earth. Our criminal justice system is violent toward people of color. Our economic system is violent toward the poor. Our entertainment media is violent toward women. Our video games are violent in their effect on the minds of children. Our military is violent in ways and places where it doesn’t have to be. Our media is violent in its knee-jerk shaming and blaming for the sake of a better click rate. Our hearts are violent as we abandon each other constantly, breeding desperation and insanity. And our government is indirectly and directly violent in the countless ways it uses its power to help those who do not need help and to withhold support from those who do.

The darker truth that Americans must face now is this: Our society is not just steeped in violence; we are hooked on violence. And in area after area, there are those who make billions of dollars on deepening the hook. Until we see that, we will just have more violence. Our minds must awaken so we can see all this. Our hearts must awaken so we can change all this. And our politics must change so we can discuss all this.

Though gun-safety legislation should be fervently pursued, a political establishment so steeped in the ways of brute force is hardly equipped to be the purveyor of a solution to the problem of violence in this country. With a nearly $740 billion military budget but only $40 billion proposed for the State Department budget, our outsize commitment to brute force and ever-withering commitment to soul force is obvious. With the Air Force seeking 100 stealth B-21 Raiders, each with a price tag of $550 million and each equipped to carry both nuclear and conventional weapons, while 12.5 million children in the United States live in food-insecure homes – the idea of politicians who allow this to happen being the ones who are going to save us from the epidemic of violence in America is almost laughable.

We will not break free of dysfunctional realities until we are willing to embrace more functional ones. I propose a U.S. Department of Peace to coordinate and harness the powers of conflict resolution; restorative justice; violence prevention; trauma-informed education; mindfulness in the schools; child and family wrap-around services; social and emotional learning; and a world-class peace academy to train and to deploy thousands of peace-builders, plus national conferences and a presidential task force for peace creation. We will make every effort to promote a culture of peace both at home and abroad. We will address the root causes, not just the symptoms of violence in America. And in time, we will transform our culture from one of conflict to one of peace.

Nothing is going to fundamentally change until enough of us are willing to take a stand for fundamental change. And no change could be more fundamental than for the United States to transform from a culture of violence to a culture of peace. From the frequency of attack to the frequency of forgiveness. From a land of fear to a land of love.

Ashland, Oregon: Peace conference attracts UN ambassador


An article from the Ashland Tidings

To honor the strides Ashland has made in the past year to cultivate a culture of peace, the Ashland Culture of Peace Commission is organizing a Global Peace Conference for the International Day of Peace, Saturday, Sept. 21. It’s also ACPC’s fourth anniversary.

Video about the conference

The conference will feature a variety of local, state, national and international speakers, including keynote speaker Anwarul Chowdhury, the former Under Secretary General and High Representative of the United Nations, and founder of the Global Movement of the Culture of Peace.

Registration begins at 8 a.m. and the event runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., with additional time to network after at the Ashland Hills Hotel, 2525 Ashland St.

Advance tickets cost $55. After Sept. 1, tickets cost $75.

Proceeds from the event go to the continuation of ACPC’s work in the community, such as the winter shelter.

ACPC co-founders David Wick and Irene Kai said it’s a big deal to have Chowdhury in Ashland on the International Day of Peace. He was the inspiration for the event, they said.

The theme of the event is “You Are the Flame,” in honor of the first anniversary of the world peace flame in Ashland.

“The concept of that is to highlight the … culture of peace, which starts with our own personal commitment to foster peace,” Kai said. “If each of us commits to the wellbeing and compassion of others no matter what our influences are in life … then we are the flame. We can be a light to foster a culture of peace.”

“Even if one person is inspired, there’s no limit to what that person can do,” Kai said.

Other speakers will include Kai, Wick, former Ashland Middle School flame keeper Finley Taylor, Saul Arbess, director of the Canadian Peace Initiative and co-founder and director of the Global Alliance For Ministries and Infrastructure for Peace, and a Native American speaker to be chosen by the Tribal Council of Oregon.

Sen. Jeff Golden, Rep. Pam Marsh, Ashland City Councilor Rich Rosenthal, police Chief Tighe O’Meara, Ashland Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Sandra Slattery, and Ashland School District Superintendent Kelly Raymond will make up a local panel.
(Article continued in the column on the right)

Questions related to this article:

Where in the world can we find good leadership today?

(Article continued from the column on the left)

Other community leaders, such as Dee Anne Everson, executive director of United Way of Jackson County, and Linda Schott, president of Southern Oregon University, will sit on a community panel.

“There’s a ceremonial part of this,” Kai said.

The event will open with a Native American song and end with “peace flame” candles for everyone in attendance to light while reciting the invocation together.

“The key point is that peace is not an idea, it is a practice,” Wick said. “Ashland is the only city that is highlighting the practical application of the culture of peace and how the leaders of our city, state and community are stepping up in engaging in doing that. It’s about commitment.”

Wick said Ashland is being recognized at the local, state, national and international levels, which could bring opportunities. In addition to garnering attention by the UN, the International Cities of Peace organization will highlight the events and work in Ashland, he said.

“This is going to have a major impact, and we have the key ambassador of the UN experiencing the work in Ashland firsthand,” Wick said. “This is a step of hope and unity, and bringing together and shining a light on what is good.”

He said city and state officials will have an opportunity to speak about their commitment to peace. They’ve also invited city leaders from other cities in the valley.

They expect from 200 to 500 attendees.

“We caught the attention of the UN ambassadors, because this hasn’t been done in the past — to capture the application of the culture of peace,” Kai said. “This is innovative, to gather all the leaders together in one room and to talk about and learn from each other about their commitment to foster the wellbeing of the entire city together. That is a big deal.”

She said their engagement with young people also struck a chord with the ambassadors. Select Ashland Middle School students tend the monument as “flame keepers,” making sure it always burns in its home across the street from AMS at the Thalden Pavilion.

“The next generation of children will become our leaders, and to inspire them to embody the concept of peace going forward, that is part of building long-term peace,” Kai said.

Kai brought the World Peace Flame to Ashland last September. It is the second in the nation. Kai has also helped Ashland’s sister city Guanajauato, Mexico, gain approval from the World Peace Flame Foundation to ignite its own monument. It will be the first Latin American city with a World Peace Flame and the first sister city flame holder.

“This is an example of people being proactive, of taking a step forward to shine a light on what is good,” Wick said. “Peace is a practice, and we can do it together as a choice.”

For more information, see

Global Human Rights Movement Issues Travel Warning for the U.S. due to Rampant Gun Violence


An article from Amnesty International

Amnesty International today issued a travel warning calling for possible travelers and visitors to the United States to exercise extreme caution when traveling throughout the country due to rampant gun violence, which has become so prevalent in the United States that it amounts to a human rights crisis. It aims to hold up a mirror to the U.S. using the model of the United States Department of State’s travel advice for U.S. travelers to other countries.

“Travelers to the United States should remain cautious that the country does not adequately protect people’s right to be safe, regardless of who they might be. People in the United States cannot reasonably expect to be free from harm – a guarantee of not being shot is impossible,” said Ernest Coverson, campaign manager for the End Gun Violence Campaign at Amnesty International USA. “Once again, it is chillingly clear that the U.S. government is unwilling to ensure protection against gun violence.”

The travel advisory addressed growing gun violence, mostly hate crimes, including racism and discrimination, highlighting that the traveler’s race, country of origin, ethnic background, sexual orientation or gender identity may place them at higher risk after recent attacks linked to white supremacist ideology.

(Article continued in right column)

Question(s) related to this article:

What is the state of human rights in the world today?

Do you think handguns should be banned?, Why or why not?

(Article continued from left column)

The action called attention to the extent to which all aspects of life in the United States have been compromised in some way by unfettered access to guns, without comprehensive and uniform regulation of their acquisition and use. By prioritizing gun ownership over basic human rights, the U.S. government is willfully and systematically failing on multiple levels and ignoring its international obligations to protect people’s rights and safety.

Amnesty International has been calling for common sense reform regarding the use and possession of firearms, including comprehensive background checks, national regulations for registering and licensing firearms, required training, a ban on high capacity magazines/assault weapons, and mandatory safe-storage laws. Amnesty International USA’s campaign to end gun violence has focused efforts on passing S.42., the Assault Weapons ban, and the Disarm Hate Act.


A report by Amnesty International, “In the Line of Fire: Human Rights and the U.S. Gun Violence Crisis” examined how all aspects of American life have been compromised in some way by the unfettered access to guns, with no attempts at meaningful national regulation.

Last month, Amnesty International published a report examining how survivors of gun violence in the United States suffer years of trauma and pain due to a destructive combination of government policies which ignore their needs.

Done with violence?


A blog by KEN BUTIGAN for Pace e Bene

In 1989, a handful of friends found themselves mulling on how they could promote a culture of nonviolence – a culture where people everywhere could let go of a deep-seated belief in violence and, instead, could live the power of nonviolent options. Pace e Bene Nonviolence Service was the result. Taking its name from a greeting St. Francis of Assisi used in his own time meaning “peace and all good,” Pace e Bene set out to contribute to a growing movement for nonviolent alternatives. I joined a year later.

In the wake of the horrific mass shootings this past weekend in Texas and Ohio, I’ve been reflecting on what Pace e Bene has learned over these three decades, and how these lessons are needed now more than ever. Thirty years of experience, action, reflection, writing, publishing, and programming – including leading a thousand trainings – have increasingly convinced us of the liberating power of creative nonviolence.

This was a slow process, in which we gradually came to see how nonviolence is a powerful force, an active method for change, and a thoroughgoing way of life. We slowly saw that nonviolence is not a “non-word” but a path with heart confronting violence without using violence and, at the same time, fostering transformation, justice, and the well-being of all. Step by step we realized that, what started out for most of us as a tactic of protest, was in fact a universal ethic. The paradigm of violence is harsh and pervasive, but there is a qualitatively different operating system available to us, one on which our survival depends.

The killings this past weekend (compounding the tsunami of violence – direct, cultural and structural – that washes over the world daily) are the consequence of the uncritical allegiance to the violence paradigm, a system of domination and threat that projects itself as reality. “This is how the world is,” it teaches us in countless ways from the moment we are born. But it is not reality. It is a highly sophisticated script that weaves together our worst tendencies —our fear, our anger, our greed, our small self—and creates a culture of violence and oppression in which we are conscripted and for which we are expected to live and die.

Fortunately, there is an alternative. We know this from a long lineage of sages who have tipped us off to the nonviolent option, but also from commonsense. If violence were the default, the human species would have destroyed itself long ago, with the retaliatory and escalatory logic of violence spinning out of control and into extinction. It is the secret history of nonviolence that has – hour by hour, day by day, year by year, century by century – kept this from happening. As Gandhi said, “Nonviolence is as old as the hills,” but he also stressed that this history has largely been ignored and undocumented. Over the last century – largely sparked by Gandhi’s modern adaptation and application of the ancient Hindu term ahimsa [“nonviolence”] in leading movements for freedom in South Africa and India – people throughout the world have explicitly excavated and applied this “third way” beyond violence and passivity.

(Article continued in the right column)

Question for this article:

Can peace be guaranteed through nonviolent means?

(Article continued from the left column)

Nonviolence is an intrinsic tendency that all human beings have – and this latent power of love in action can be tapped to deal with conflict and violence more effectively than the other options at our disposal: retreat, accommodation, or counter-violence. But if this power is trivialized or suppressed, we won’t access it. We will go on tapping the power of violence – and reinforcing the self-fulfilling prophecy of violence. We will continue to be caught in the violence trap.

Sometimes, though, there are moments where the search for the alternative beyond violence and passivity becomes so urgent that nonviolence—as a paradigm of the fullness of life, as a universal ethic—can suddenly be glimpsed as an option. The stereotypes that have long dogged nonviolence (that it is ineffective, passive, weak, utopian, naïve, unpatriotic, marginal, simplistic, and impractical) can peel away long enough to see that a nonviolent culture in its most robust and comprehensive sense is the only practical solution.

This may be a moment for just such a new direction.

The mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton (number 27 and 28 in the US this year, according to one count) demonstrate the bankruptcy of the violence paradigm. But, ironically, they also illuminate that the nonviolent operating system is also present, as seen in the reaction to these horrendous events. The public has recoiled against the “normalization” of such slaughter. Between the lines of this outcry is the bedrock assumption that violence is anti-human and that a culture free of violence should be the default.

What’s largely missing, though, is the way to get there. That’s where active, creative and relentless nonviolence comes in.

Nonviolence is not an end goal – it is a process. It is a process of envisioning an alternative, re-framing our thinking to foster this alternative, and living our way into this alternative. It is a way of being – but also a way of building a culture where, in effect, it is easier to be nonviolent. It is both what we can call “soul work” and “society work.”

What would our “soul work” entail in light of massive gun violence, for example?

First, we must once and for all tell ourselves that we are done with violence. Enough is enough. If we have been trained in violence, then we must get “un-trained.” This begins with making a solemn pledge in the secrecy of our heart that we are letting go of all the ways we support violence. This fundamental re-orientation can lead us to learning, healing, taking stock and taking action. A long process of secret confession and transformation may await, but it can start today.

And what of our “society work”? We must join grassroots movements laboring to create laws, policies, structures, and cultures where the lives of human beings have priority over the absolutization of guns. The sanctity of existence takes precedent over unrestricted access to guns. As we saw this weekend, guns were used to enforce and perpetuate the violence system (and, in these cases, its preeminent value of white supremacy). Our long-term “society work” will not only lessen the threat that guns represent, it will transform the cultural assumptions on which they rest.

To do both our soul work and our society work, we encourage you to go public with a call for a society free from violence and everything that feeds it. One option is to join Campaign Nonviolence in taking action in cities and towns across the US September 14-22, where we will mobilize for a culture of active and liberating nonviolence. Currently over 2800 nonviolent actions are planned.

But you don’t have to wait. You can do something today.

We’re done with violence. Together we can plunge into the difficult but powerful work of mainstreaming nonviolence for a more just and peaceful world.

U.S. students walk out again to protest gun violence


An article by Keith Coffman in Reuters (reprinted by permission)

Demanding an end to gun violence and tougher restrictions on firearm sales, thousands of students again walked out of classes across the United States on Friday in hopes of putting pressure on politicians ahead of November’s midterm elections.

Timed to coincide with the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre, students left classes at midmorning, many waving placards with slogans including “I should be worried about grades, not guns,” and “Enough is enough.”

Students gather for a rally in Washington Square Park, as part of a nationwide walk-out of classes to mark the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School mass shooting, in New York City, U.S., April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Organizers said students from more than 2,600 schools and institutions were scheduled to take part, but that was fewer than participated in a similar walkout last month. In some places, demonstrators even met with resistance from school administrators.

“Today is about being proactive and being empowered and really funneling all that energy and anger we have as young people into some productive change,” one of the student organizers, Lane Murdock of Connecticut, told Reuters.

Olivia Pfeil, a 16-year-old sophomore from a high school in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, held a sign bearing the names of mass shooting victims. “We’re expecting change or come next election cycle we will support politicians who are listening to the voices of the youth,” she said.

It was the second student walkout since the Feb. 14 massacre of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and the emergence of a national student movement to end gun violence and toughen restrictions on firearms sales.

Many of the demonstrators wore orange, a color that has come to represent the movement against gun violence. A 13-second silence was observed in honor of the 13 killed at Columbine.

At the Texas statehouse in Austin, about 1,000 students, many waving signs and chanting anti-NRA slogans, demanded stricter gun control measures.

“Because we can’t vote, this is the only way we can make our voices heard,” said Graeclyn Garza, a second-year student at McCallum High School in Austin, who waved a sign reading “Enough.”

Outside the White House, protesters sat in silence while they listened to the names of gun violence victims read aloud.

“It happened like 20 years ago,” said Ayanna Rhodes, 14, a student at Washington International School, referring to Columbine, “And we are still getting mass shootings in schools.”

Two gunman went on a shooting rampage at Columbine High School in Colorado in 1999, leaving 12 students and a teacher dead before killing themselves in a massacre that stunned the nation. But since then, school shootings have become commonplace.

(Continued in right column)

Question related to this article:

Do you think handguns should be banned?, Why or why not?

(Continued from left column)

Even as students prepared for their protest on Friday morning, news broke that a 17-year-old student had been wounded in a shooting at a high school near Ocala, Florida. A suspect was arrested soon afterward, police said.

The latest gun violence unfolded about 225 miles (360 km)northwest of the Parkland high school, where two months ago a former student killed 17 people in the deadliest high school shooting in U.S. history.

Despite widespread revulsion over the school shootings, the issue of gun control remains sensitive in Colorado and across the country, where the Second Amendment of the Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms.


Dudley Brown, president of the Colorado-based National Association for Gun Rights, said the gun-control movement seeks to have the government take away constitutional rights.
“The main objective of these students is to ban firearms completely, and confiscate the firearms of law-abiding Americans,” Brown said. “We will oppose them at every step.”

In some conservative school districts, administrators told students they could face disciplinary steps if they walked out.

In suburban Dallas, a dozen students dressed in orange chanted “End gun violence!” as they huddled in a parking lot across the street from North Garland High School.

Freshman Victoria Fierro, 14, said school administrators blocked the doors when about 50 students tried to leave, so a small group exited through a side door.

“They told us we would get in trouble if we walk out, and we told them it was a peaceful protest, we’re not causing any damage,” Fierro said. “This is over a serious topic that people are pushing aside.”

The principal declined to answer questions from Reuters.

It was not immediately clear whether Friday’s turnout matched those of earlier protests. More than a month ago, tens of thousands of students from some 3,000 schools participated in the #ENOUGH National School Walkout to demand tighter gun control regulations.

On March 24, “March For Our Lives” rallies in cities across the United States were some of the biggest U.S. youth demonstrations in decades, with hundreds of thousands of young Americans and their supporters taking to the streets.

On the evening before the walk-outs, Colorado gun control activists rallied near Columbine High School.

Carlos Rodriguez, a 17-year-old junior from Marjory Stoneman, traveled to Columbine for the anniversary and said he found a sense of solidarity in the outpouring of support.

“That’s the only thing that’s keeping us Douglas students alive right now: the distraction of fighting for our rights and advocating for our lives,” Rodriguez told Reuters.

There was no walkout on Friday at Columbine, which has not held classes on April 20 since the massacre. Students were encouraged to take part in community service instead.

Additional reporting by Lacey Johnson and Ian Simpson in Washington, Zach Fagenson in Miami, Lisa Maria Garza in Garland, Texas, Jon Herskovitz in Austin, Texas, and Edgar Mendez in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Dan Grebler

The Americas are preparing for the second World March for Peace and Nonviolence


An article from Pressenza (translation by CPNN)

North America

United States

A tribute to ML King was given in Helen Park. The core team will go through New York and San Francisco. A visit to the United Nations is planned for a possible reception by the Secretary General. The presentation of the documentary “The Beginning of the End of Nuclear Weapons”. Through the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, a line of work for collaboration and convergence was opened under the program 2030 of the United Nations. Contacts with the United Nations Secretary-General on the theme of the refoundation of the United Nations and possible macro-consultations on the subject at the March.


Canada participated in the march for Earth Day with the message “Non-violence is ecological: without war, there are no dirty weapons”. A press release is being prepared to request spaces for the invitation to organize activities for the passage of the march. On Saturday, 27/4 we attended the Spring of the Alternatives event to find contacts.


The World March is invited to participate in the Nobel Peace Summit to be held in Merida on 17 and 23 September 2019. During the visit of the core team, there will be an event at the border with the United States and a tribute to the Treaty of Tlatelolco.

Central America


Alliances have been formed between individuals and organizations to strengthen the group of promoters. Among these, different sectors are represented: Civil society organizations, DiverArte, Organizations related to community communication, Student organizations, National University: students of the University of San Carlos de Guatemala, Municipalities: Municipality of Mixco


Formation of the school 60 which will lead to the construction of the symbol of peace. It will be realized by the children of the schools located in the border zones of Honduras and Guatemala, at the reception of the March. The association of medical students of the National University UNAH and two private universities organizes the accompaniment of the March during its tour in Central America. The municipalities of Omoa and San Pedro Sula, decide to participate in the March with a massive mobilization of the population. Conducting three simultaneous conferences at San Pedro Sula Universities on topics related to world peace.


Contacts are ongoing with some Cuban organizations.

El Salvador

Activities will be launched from Andrés Bello University. Probably in several cities of the country: San Salvador, San Miguel, Chalatenango, etc.

Costa Rica

We presented the campaign of the global plan of action for non-violence at educational centers 11 – 22, July. The teacher training plan begins the third week of July. Meetings with government authorities, the municipality of San José and organizations to propose activities on the theme of non-violence. Meetings every two weeks on Wednesdays at CAP from 5p.m. Celebration with artistic activities, human symbols of the International Day of Peace 21 / 9. Celebration of the day of non-violence 2/10 and departure of the March. Participation in the labor day march, distribution of flyers and transport of the March cover. Declaration of Cultural Interest of the March by the Government of Costa Rica. During the March, 27 and 28 in November are expected to participate in the International Forum on “The Role of the Armies in the 21st Century”. Activities with 1000 children on the esplanade of the Children’s Museum. Concert for peace in the park of democracy. Realization of human symbols at the passage of the March and some cultural reception events.


Last year, a forum was held at the Inter-American University. Between the end of September and the beginning of October 2019, we will organize a forum at a local university (location, date and time to be confirmed). As part of the second Global March for Peace and Non-Violence, we invite stakeholders to participate in the forum “Culture of Peace, Non-Violence, Respect for Children and Nature for a Better Panama” . They can, in this environment, share information they deem relevant on actions, contributions and projects in this regard.

South America


In Bogotá: Work with the 40 schools that supported us during the South American march. We will hold workshops on active nonviolence, murals, drawings, flag raising, stories and writings, symbols of peace in the area and parades. The symbol of peace will be held in the Plaza de Bolívar, inviting 5000 people. Realization of a great concert for peace and non-violence. In Barrancabermeja: There will be a conference in Unipaz and SENA. A walk through the city to gather 2000 people. Contacts will be established with the human rights entities we worked with during March. We will close with a great symbol of peace at Kolibri Park. In Medellin: Carnival of culture, conferences in a university on peace and non-violence. Contact government entities responsible for human rights and related organizations. In other cities of Colombia: (Cali-Popayan-Pasto-Cartagena-Tunia-Cucuta-Bucaramanga-Ipiales-Armenia-Neiva). Peace marches and symbols will take place. Contact with schools. Discussions on non-violence in universities and institutes.

(continued in right column)

(Click here for a French version of this article or here for a Spanish version.)

Question for this article:

How can we be sure to get news about peace demonstrations?

(continued from left column)


In Guayaquil, letters were sent to universities for forums. National schools that verbally communicated their interest were contacted. Contacts have also been established in other cities such as Manta, Ámbato and Quitó. In Guayaquil: Activities are planned at the University of Guayaquil and Casa Grande University. Inter youth sports club championship. Some colleges and the municipality of Guayaquil. On the cover: Activities are planned for the passage of the 2ª March in coordination with the Pan-American Round Table and the University of Manta.


Appointments every Sunday with personal development work and organization of the March. A diptych has been developed, institutions contacted. We were interviewed on the radio. And,the March was advertised in the Sao Paulo Forum through the women’s sector. We continue to contact people and institutions that support the March There will be forums with videos to advertise it.


In Sao Paulo – SP: Meetings for the dissemination of the March and the formation of a group of volunteers to participate in the organization and dissemination of the March in Sao Paulo. Production of explanatory material on how to organize the symbols of peace and other global activities in schools and universities. In Cubatão – SP: Meeting with the director of education to create human symbols in schools in the region. In July, 22 met the directors of 75 to make human symbols in various schools in the towns of the Santos coast. Presentation of the March on July 23, this time to the directors and coordinators of the first years (1º to 5º degree). There was a very good positive energy, we encourage schools to achieve the symbol of peace at the launch of the World March, during the week of non-violence from 2 to October 4. Participation in the March for culture of peace to be held in August In Caucaia – SP: Presentation of the March to representatives of different religious groups of the city.  Participation in the March for the Culture of Peace, to be held in August by the Ministry of Sport and Culture of Cotia in collaboration with an interfaith commission. In Paraisópolis – MG: In August 29, we will have a meeting with all the schools of Paraisópolis to inform of the world March and propose activities. During the visit of the base team, an activity is planned with the children in the message room of the silo south of Minas Gerais. Em Salvador – BA: Trip to Bahia to broadcast the March, contact with Bom Fim Brothers in Salvador, Bahia, with the proposal to create a community of nonviolent resistance in the city. In Recife – PE: The meeting with the Ministry of Education of Jaboatão dos Guararapes took place in July 17. The 12th of August will be held as part of the training of the project on non-violence in schools with schools 30 of the metropolitan area of ​​Recife. In Curitiba – PR: We are planning a visit to the Lula Libre camp. We are trying to organize a base team visit to Lula to deliver the book of the South American March for Peace and Nonviolence.


Prevention and anti-violence workshops with prospective teachers and mothers in schools in Comas District, Lima. Prevention and fight against violence among school teachers in the district of Cañete. We have promoters in every city. We are coordinating to promote the activities at each point. We have a central location in Lima, provided by the University Ricardo Palma.


In La Paz: Activities focused on the printing and delivery of invitation letters to secondary and primary schools in the Sopocachi region of La Paz. Since July, workshops for teachers and students from the same region have started. In Cochabamba: Activities carried out at the University Mayor of San Simón during the peace march in South America to 2018. In Santa Cruz: The Silo Study Center began with the dissemination of World March activities . Beginning of dissemination activities in July.


We are starting organizational meetings with new people to fit into the activities. We are planning a tour of all regions of Chile to promote the formation of grassroots groups. They will rely on the production of materials of all kinds to cover the actions. The idea is to integrate people to continue the March in future editions. Also in Chile, we will strengthen support for the NPT (Nuclear Weapons Treaty). Progress has already been made with parliamentarians, we will now expand our action to municipalities. Contact in Chile with the Mexican environment Alicia Bárcenas (ECLAC) who has access to the UN and the governments of the region. The organizer of WOMAD offered to collaborate with the March in Chile for the realization of a mega symbol of peace. At the Latin American Humanist Forum of 11, 12 and 13 in May, the March for America was discussed at the Teatro del Puente. We will have a discussion of the network of teams for the March at the Americas level in July 27.


There are promoters in the 8 provinces : Salta, Jujuy, Tucumán, Cordoba, Mendoza, Rio Negro (El Bolsón), Bueno Aires (Tigre and Mar del Plata) and recently in the CABA (autonomous city of Bs. will be two main events in the country: Recognition of the mothers and grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo as heroes of the nonviolent struggle. Tribute to Silo [Mario Luis Rodríguez Cobos] . In the process of organization In Buenos Aires: Dissemination activities in Parque Lezama, Buenos Aires Province and CABA. The rest is under development. In Cordoba: The team of promoters of the city was formed and organizational meetings were organized. The March has already been declared of educational interest by the province of Córdoba. The application for membership of other institutions to the municipality and the chamber of legislators was presented. The following have been programmed: Work in Schools, The Making of a Wall Campaign, The Screening of the Documentary “The End of Nuclear Weapons”, A musical musical festival among other actions. In Jujuy: A small action is planned for the delivery of the book of the South American March, to Miracle House. Draft to declare week 1 of October the week of non-violence of 2019. In Salta: The Community for the human development and members of the General Direction of the community organization of the municipality presented to the Human Rights Commission and the constitutional guarantees of the Council of deliberation the plan to declare the week 1 of October the week of the nonviolence of 2019 and the Place of the Peace and Non Violence is inaugurated. Make a calendar with activities (1 per month) of diffusion: Cinema debate on the beginning of the end of nuclear weapons, Marathon or bike ride, Human symbols, Closure with a cultural festival. In Mendoza: In July 19, there was a workshop meeting with social organizations adhering to the 2MM. At the 02 of October, there will be marches of Las Heras in Centro de Mendoza. Symbols of peace of the students of the school of Mendoza. In Punta de Vacas: Celebration of the 10th anniversary of the First March on 02/01/2020.

The Americas prepare for the world march

Despite economic, social and political difficulties, each in his own way should try to participate in the project. If this is the case, you can do this by facilitating contacts of individuals, personalities or NGOs in the above-mentioned countries or in other countries through this e-mail address. .

Friendship – a Pathway to Peace


By Irene Kai and David Wick, co-founders of the Ashland Culture of Peace Commission

A foreign language professor at the Southern Oregon College (currently SOU) took a group of students on a bus trip to Guanajuato Mexico to learn immersion Spanish and the Mexican culture every year in the 1960s. In 1969, Señora Chela established a sister school relationship with the Southern Oregon College and the University of Guanajuato. She also established the sister city relationship with the Mayors of Guanajuato and Ashland. The Amigo Club was born. During the fifty years Ashland has formed a wonderful and close relationship with Guanajuato. Students flow between the two universities, faculty and city officials visit both cities, there are marriages between students, and some of Señora Chela’s students from Guanajuato went on to become a Governor, Minister of Economics and officers of the Mexican Government.

World Peace Flame ceremony in Plaza de la Paz, the Peace Plaza
(click on image to enlarge)

In April of this year, a delegation of fifty people from Guanajuato with their Mayor, City Council members, faculty from the university and the president of the Peace Commission visited Ashland. During their stay, they visited the World Peace Flame Monument at the Thalden Pavilion. The Mayor from Guanajuato was so inspired by this iconic symbol of Peace in Ashland that he asked if Ashland Culture of Peace Commission (ACPC) would assist him to install a World Peace Flame in Guanajuato. This would be the first World Peace Flame in Latin America. He invited us to visit Guanajuato with the Ashland delegation the following month to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Sister City relationship.

(Continued in right column)

Questions for this article:

How can culture of peace be developed at the municipal level?

(Continued from left column)

When we arrived in Guanajuato, we were embraced as if we were family members. The instant warmth, open heartedness was immediate. During our stay, we learned so much about the beauty, history, art and the culture of the people and the city, especially the heartfelt closeness of the 50-year relationship everyone held dear. Wherever we went, we were serenaded by music and showered with genuine affection. The week-long celebration was packed with programs from 8am to 11pm daily. One of the programs that was requested by the Mayor of Guanajuato was having a peace ceremony conducted by ACPC at the Plaza de la Paz, the Peace Plaza in the center of the city, in order to set the intention to bring the World Peace Flame to Guanajuato in the very near future. Irene brought the candle she lit from the original World Peace Flame in Wales and gifted it to their city. The mayor lit the candle with a young school girl, a symbolic gesture of passing peace to the next generation. Most nation’s history is recorded by periods of war, at this gathering, we were writing history for our next generation, our commitment to peace. Ashland proclaimed itself a City of Peace on 5/16/2017. We also guided Guanajuato to join the International Cities of Peace after the ceremony.

Why is friendship important? As we know, long term friendship builds a strong bond, especially one for 50 years. We see each other face to face, share our joy and challenges of our children, grandchildren and life in general. Inspire and lift each other up when times are tough and go out having a grand time just enjoying each other as well. There is no difference between personal friendship and a sister cities relationship, it’s only in a different scale. As with most things of value, this is an investment with a Return On Investment on many levels. Strong bonds between cities may become a saving grace in the world.

The University of Guanajuato and SOU share knowledge and encourage students to immerse in different cultures. When they are exposed to something new, they tend to be open to learning in a safe environment instead of being fearful and lash out. They will become better global citizens with a bigger capacity of tolerance. When city officials share ideas on how to manage and govern, through open dialogue of friendship, the conversations become instructive and valued.

At this time, there is such a lack of civility in our daily interactions on all levels, personal attacks become the normal course of dialogue. The deep friendship between Guanajuato and Ashland deserves to be nurtured and cherished, like in any family, we are teaching our children how to build good relationships.

When Guanajuato installs the World Peace Flame, Ashland and Guanajuato will be the first Sister Cities in the world with sister World Peace Flames.