Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mother's Day

Throughout history there have been holiday's to remember our mothers... but in the US, the first official celebrations took place in 1873 when women in 18 cities observed the Mothers Day for Peace after Julia Ward Howe promoted the day in reaction to the carnage of the Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War. Looking at the death, she felt that mother's bore the greatest pain of war and therefore needed to organize against it. Boston celebrated this Mothers Day for at least 10 years and it was observed as an anti-war holiday for about 30 years in various places.

As we think today of 2500+ mothers in the US and countless others around the world who will not receive a phone call, card, flowers, or a hug because their children have died in wars, let us join with Julia Ward Howe and stand against this most serious affront against motherhood, the killing of their children. Let us, in the name of all of our mothers, banish war forever.

1 comment:

Barbara MacLean said...

Boston still celebrates Mother's Day as a day of peace - at least a few hundred or so do, anyway. The Louis D. Brown Peace Institute is a small grass-roots organiztion named after a young man who was gunned down on his way to a birthday party. He was a very bright kid, in the wrong place at the wrong time. His mother - Tina Chery - started the organization to teach peace in the schools and neighborhoods.

Every year on Mother's Day they have a walk for peace, as a fundraiser for the organization, but more importantly, as an effort toward solidarity with/for all those who have lost loved ones to gun violence. This year's march was pretty much a wash - quite literally as Boston received over 7 inches of rain that weekend. Only a few hundred people showed up, instead of the couple of thousand that it has grown to be over the years. But this year's was also poignant as one of the marching moms, herself a peace activist in the neighborhood, lost her second son in 10 years to gun violence just a week before. The mayor showed up and they got good press, but they still struggle to raise funds to provide good curricula for schools.

Boston continues to struggle with gun violence - the number of homicides has increased dramatically in the last couple of years. And no matter how many mothers get into print or on TV, it seems to have little impact.
Worrisome. Sad. But I pray not hopeless.