Editor’s Note: The following opinion column was submitted by Jim Murphy of Veterans Fellowship Of Reconciliation
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We have a choice on Wednesday November 11th. We can recognize the day as Veterans Day or Armistice Day. If we wish to recognize Veterans Day… a day of sales in stores and restaurants, a day that shows off military displays that glorify war and gives lip service to men and women that served, many changed forever, then so be it.
Or we can reclaim the significance of Armistice Day… the original intention of that day – a worldwide call for peace that was spurred by universal revulsion at the huge slaughter of World War One.
In Canada and the United Kingdom, this day is known as Remembrance Day. After World War II, the U.S. Congress decided to re-brand November 11 as Veterans Day. Who could speak against that? But honoring the warrior quickly morphed into honoring the military and glorifying war.
Armistice Day was flipped from a day for peace into a day for displays of militarism.
See what the other veterans are doing. Go to the Veterans For Peace website, watch for Armistice Day gatherings across the U.S.A. and join these veterans.
November 11, it is as urgent as ever to ring the bells for peace. Many Veterans For Peace chapters ring bells, and ask local churches to do the same, at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, as was done at the end of World War One.
“The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:
Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and
Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and
Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.”
Do not say “Happy Veterans Day” to many vets… or “thank you for serving”. We simply did our jobs based on the path that had been established for each of us. We want that path to be grown over with vines and flowers… “No More War”
Peace, Jim Murphy: Veterans Fellowship Of Reconciliation
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