Waging Peace in 2003

With 2003 fast approaching and war on Iraq seeming more and more likely, here are 10 suggestions on how to make this year a more peaceful year.


  1. Learn more about nuclear policy. Read The New Nuclear Danger by Dr. Helen Caldicott and watch The Last Epidemic video by Eric Thierman about the medical consequences of nuclear weapons. Also, check out NuclearPolicy.org.


  2. Learn more about 9/11 and the war on terrorism. Read "9/11" by Noam Chomsky, "Terrorism and War" by Howard Zinn and/or "Bin laden, Islam, and America's New 'War on Terrorism'" by As'ad Abukhalil.


  3. Contact your Congressmember and Senators. Check out Congress.org and Senate.com for contact info.


  4. Join a group to help promote global peace. Check out the Resource Center for Nonviolence at 515 Broadway, Santa Cruz; 831.423.1626. You can also contact Art and Revolution at 426.2292 to get involved locally in puppet-making and street theater.


  5. Support the women's call for peace vigil at the White House. The vigil began Sunday, Nov. 17, and continues through March 8, International Women's Day. Check it out at United For Peace.


  6. Check out some links of hope on the planetary grid. Time to Shine is a good place to start.


  7. Buy locally, think globally--and consider giving up money. Check out Santa Cruz Barter (SCB), for an example of a not-for-profit local initiative based on exchanging "value" with one another.


  8. Make a difference at a local level. Your local city and county officials are always a good place to start.


  9. Breathe. As Judyth Hill writes, "Wage peace with your breath. Breathe in firemen and rubble, breathe out whole buildings and flocks of red wing blackbirds. Breathe in terrorists and breathe out sleeping children and freshly mown fields. Breathe in confusion and breathe out maple trees. Breathe in the fallen and breathe out lifelong friendships intact. Wage peace with your listening: hearing sirens, pray loud. Remember your tools: flower seeds, clothes pins, clean rivers. Make soup. Play music, learn the word for thank you in three languages. Learn to knit, and make a hat. Think of chaos as dancing raspberries, imagine grief as the outbreath of beauty or the gesture of fish. Swim for the other side. Wage peace. Never has the world seemed so fresh and precious- Have a cup of tea and rejoice. Act as if armistice has already arrived. Don't wait another minute."


  10. Don't wait another minute. Get naked!


Sarah Phelan is the News Editor at Metro Santa Cruz.

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