July 1, 2015: PAXi Daily Peace Indicator equals: 701
Since July of 2012, Peace Couple has checked daily statistics about the level of discussion about peace and nonviolence in the United States. You can find out more about the PAXi Index at our original post: Peace Index Daily Stats
Since this is a homegrown project, we have occasionally missed numbers, and we have been remiss on calculating and posting numbers for long stretches of time. Though, we wanted to catch up a bit by offering some recent figures.
Our Peace Index postings are a little behind again. We just moved from North Babylon to Riverhead, and finding it hard to set up our new (old) house. Though, the stats are taken, and PAXi numbers will be posted soon for all the missing days.
Wanted to share that today, “nonviolence”, skyrocketed today on our Google News search. In looking at why, found this interesting story. Ela Gandhi comments on the potential (and limitations) of social media in supporting nonviolence:
Yet, here I go committing heresy: Howard Zinn is wrong. In the first few paragraphs of this essay he gives away the whole pacifist store. Now I am all for the concept of free, but not when it means surrendering my pacifism from the get-go. Zinn starts by giving up on pacifism:
The idea of the project was to create interesting content, to create a daily ritual of peace culture, to bring people to the blog, and to nurture some self-discipline in myself as a writer.
I believe I succeeded a little bit on the first three counts. Though, since there are many days with no peace song announced, I guess I failed on the self-discipline score. And, I failed even though I had some nurturing help from the Duke, who sometimes provided inspiration, and sometimes just wrote the post for me. My missed days have taught me that I cannot count on myself to be both creative and ambitious each day. So, my next daily project will involve less of a need for inspiration. Though, I hope it will still be fruitful to the peace community.
The sixteenth chapter of The Power of Nonviolence: Writings by Advocates of Peace contains Dr. Martin Luther King’s 1967 speech Declaration of Independence from the War in Vietnam. The speech, which is also known as Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence ,was given in the Manhattan’s Riverside Church exactly one year before King was assassinated. It is sad to realize that Dr. King’s 45 year old attempt to seek freedom from war applies equally to the Vietnam War as it does to the wars that the United States is now waging in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen.
Through the lens of history, it is hard to understand how controversial the speech was in 1967. It is common wisdom today that the Vietnam War was a mistake, despite the US government’s recently started 10-year plan to rehabilitate American’s view of that war. In 1967, all the major media backed the Vietnam War. Dr. King was regularly attacked in national newspapers such as the New York Times for speaking out against the Vietnam War. Peace activists are still attacked in today’s media for opposing today’s wars for the same reasons that Dr. King cites.
Dr. King responds to his critics who say that he should only speak about the domestic issue of civil rights, and keep silent on the VietNam War. The critics make the lesser evil argument that Dr. King is hurting the cause of civil rights by speaking out against the war. Dr. Kings explains in the introduction of his speech that those critics misunderstand both who he is , and misunderstand”the world in which they live.” Dr. King gives seven reasons why he must speak out: Continue reading MLK: Declaration of Independence from the War→
“Fighting Is Not The Solution“, performed by Brett Dennen (and friends), is the Peace Song of the Day for April 16th. This song can be found on an album of children’s peace songs, put together by The Mosaic Project. Grown-ups will probably also enjoy this song — and some of the other songs on the album, too. You can get Children’s Songs for Peace and a Better World through CD Baby: here.
The song has a great chorus, with simple words of wisdom: “Fighting is not the solution…Try conflict resolution.”