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Sunday, May 14, 2006

Mother's Day - The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

Perhaps my revulsion to all things war comes to me naturally because I was born on Mother's Day. Of all of the days set aside for special observation Mother's Day is one of the most important. I am not talking about the fluffy, flowers and chocolates, overly sentimental, highly profitable modern version that is observed in this nation today. I am referring to Mother's Day in its original form back in 1870 when Unitarian Universalist, social-justice and peace activist, Juila Ward Howe, penned the following words:

"We will not have questions answered by irrelevant agencies,
Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage,
For caresses and applause,
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn
All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy, and patience.
We, the women of one country
Will be too tender of those of another country
To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs."

The lines above were excerpted from Howe's 1870 "Mother's Day Proclaimation". Howe along with activist Anna Jarvis, went on to propose an annual Mother's Day for Peace in 1872. The original Mother's Day calls for women to be responsible mothers by training their sons and daughters against participating in war. The original Mother's Day calls women to unite against those who call on others to sacrifice themselves on the altar of war, glorify war, wage war, profit from war, and practice the vile violence of war. Mother's Day for Peace was created as an anti-war protest.

Members of CODE PINK and their supporters journeyed on May 13th to Washington D.C. "to reclaim Mother's Day as a day to work for peace" by partipating in a 24-hr anti-war vigil in front of the White House. Bravo and Thank You, good mothers, fathers, and friends, for representing so many of us who stand against the murderous madness that is killing our children and the children of our sisters in Iraq. I love Code Pink's lawn art message in the above photo, "Mom Says NO WAR".

Good mothers never support war for they know the destructive process of war extends far beyond its conclusion. Good mothers know that the mental anguish, physical pain, death, and poverty continue for decades after such savage competitions. Good mothers question the propagandized excuses used to promote military conflict and refuse to "justify killing". Good mothers don't dress their children in mini military uniforms - camouflage is not cute. Good mothers teach diplomatic methods of conflict resolution and anger management to their children.

Good mothers don't allow violent movies or toys or allow their children to be cruel. Good mothers encourage their children to be creative problem solvers, to build, to fix, to grow things, to make things, and to nurture. Good mothers also promote peace by teaching their children to respect physical, cultural, and religious differences. Good mothers warn their children not to be followers by teaching them to question and to think for themselves. Good mothers teach their children that brandishing a weapon is a sign of weakness for they must look inside themselves to find strength. Good mothers teach their children to love life and to value the lives of others as they value their own.

Good mothers love their children and so do not sacrifice them for presidents, preachers, popes, kings, or any kind of god. The prophets, priests, generals, politicians, monarchs, and other heads of states never sacrifice themselves or their own...they only call upon others to give.

Mothers who beat the drums of war, fan its flames with flags, and chant its slogans with the gusto of unquestioning believers should not have had children for they love the game more than the child. Bad mothers are those who willingly manufacture children to feed to the imperial military killing machine.

That was Mother's Day, The Good, and The Bad. The Ugly you will find by clicking here. Scroll down until you land on a piece that I posted last year entitled, "Mama Don't Let your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys" in honor of America's worst mother (it was written BEFORE her nasty comments about the victims of Hurricane Katrina)

All mothers all over the world must do a better job of teaching and protecting their children and each others children. Let us value our children by refusing to pay for, sacrifice for, support, or participate in war. American mothers can begin by working to stop the sale of weapons on the global market. We are the world's biggest WAR LORD PUSHER of weapons that terrorize, maim, and destroy. Who in America is profitting from the shedding of blood? Not Mothers or Children.

Happy Mother's Day to Good Mothers Everywhere!

Teach Your Children Well...
...Kitchen Window Woman...


Blogger zenyenta said...

Great post. I'm ashamed to say I didn't know the origin of Mother's Day. Never even thought about it. It's a lot more meaningful to me after reading that.

And happy birthday!

6:21 PM  
Blogger MsDemmie said...

Thank you for the history lesson. In the UK - Mothering Sunday has been part of the churches calendar for centuries. It is always 2 Sundays before Easter.

I hope you enjoyed your birthday.

10:16 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Excellent history lesson. I had no idea. I never gave it much thought, but I just assumed Mother's Day was invented by Hallmark. Who knew. But it figures. So much of our real history is either censored and/or hidden behind meaningless ceremonies. Thanks for the information.

6:51 PM  
Anonymous JollyRoger said...

Our thoughts must be with the mothers who now cringe any time someone knocks on the door.

Those mothers deserve to know what Barbara Bush knew-that their children aren't gong to be chewed up in a foolish Texan's war of choice. Until every mother can know this for sure, we must not let up.

3:39 AM  

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