Saturday, January 10, 2015

FOLDING FOR PEACE: How many uses can you think of for a crane?

I've been invited by my friends at Campaign Nonviolence to participate in a project to create 70,000 paper cranes and send them to Hiroshima on the 70th anniversary of the bombing of that city by the U.S. - the first use of atomic weapons against people, on August 8, 1945.

Paper cranes - read more about the Campaign Nonviolence project

I'm looking forward to inviting my friends at St. Luke's Logan Square, Logan Square Ecumenical Alliance, Chicago Coalition to Shut Down Guantanamo, Working Group on the Middle East, and other groups I'm involved with to fold some cranes with me.

I've been fascinated by the communal activity represented by folding cranes ever since reading the story of Sadako. (Maybe you've read that story to.)

Eleanor Coerr, Sakako and the
Thousand Paper Cranes
It seems to me that that folding cranes -- and folding cranes together with other people -- is very similar to prayer. It's a simple, discrete activity that anyone can participate in. It can be very brief. It can be very private. But it can also open up all kinds of possibilities.

One of the possibilities that Campaign Nonviolence is interested in telling people here in the U.S. about is their gathering in New Mexico in August -- to work for nonviolence and against nuclear weapons.

One of the possibilities I'm interested in is telling as many people about the many ways in which people are mobilizing in 2015 to push for full nuclear disarmament.

How about you? How many uses can you think of for a crane?

Related posts

"To see the atom bomb museum," I said. And again I wondered, what can a child in Nagasaki think when they see a person from the US who has come here to see the atom bomb museum?

(See Encounter in Nagasaki )

There are many books proffered to children that provide justifications for the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The discourse on the use of atomic weapons is certainly a worthy topic of study for young people of a certain age. However, there is a distinction between critical reading of atom bombing history and passive receiving of atom bombing dogma. I am wondering about how this can be effectively broken down.

(See Approaching Hiroshima: A Challenge for Children's Literature and Peace Education )

Soon, Kazashi was able to visit the U.S. again, and we had the opportunity to renew our friendship. He told me about his work: "When I obtained a position at a university, it turned out to be in Hiroshima," I remember Kazashi telling me. "So it was very natural that I became connected with the peace movement. I became a peace worker."

(See Obama in Japan: How About a Pivot Toward Peacemaking? )

There are so many people to thank . . .
Through the visual arts ... photography ... film ... teaching ... activism ... publishing ....

So many people are making a difference in eliminating nuclear weapons . . . . 

(See GRATITUDE: People Are Making the Difference in Eliminating Nuclear Weapons )