TruthDig & Brave New Foundation – 2014-05-11 00:55:37
Brave New Foundation
The Anti-War Origins of Mother’s Day
Sunday is Mother’s Day, which has often-forgotten antiwar roots.
In 1870, Julia Ward Howe published her “Mother’s Day Proclamation,” calling on women around the world to rise up and oppose war in all its forms.
It would be decades before Americans officially began celebrating Mother’s Day, and much of the original spirit of the proclamation has since been lost.
The Brave New Foundation, Code Pink and No More Victims are leading a movement to restore that spirit to the day.
In 1870, Howe — a prominent American abolitionist, social activist, and poet, most famous as the author of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” — issued her “Mother’s Day Proclamation” as a pacifist reaction to the carnage of the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War.
It needs to be remembered.
Mother’s Day Proclamation
by Julia Ward Howe(1870)â€¨
Arise, then, women of this day!
Arise, all women who have hearts,â€¨
Whether our baptism be of water or of tears!
“We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies,â€¨
Our husbands will not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause.â€¨
Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearnâ€¨
All that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.â€¨
We, the women of one country, will be too tender of those of another countryâ€¨
To allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs.”
From the bosom of the devastated Earth a voice goes up with our own.â€¨
It says: “Disarm! Disarm!
The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.”â€¨
Blood does not wipe out dishonor, nor violence indicate possession.â€¨
As men have often forsaken the plough and the anvil at the summons of war,â€¨
Let women now leave all that may be left of home for a great and earnest day of counsel.
Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.â€¨
Let them solemnly take counsel with each other as to the meansâ€¨
Whereby the great human family can live in peace,â€¨
Each bearing after his own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar,â€¨
But of God.
In the name of womanhood and humanity, I earnestly askâ€¨
That a general congress of women without limit of nationalityâ€¨
May be appointed and held at someplace deemed most convenientâ€¨
And at the earliest period consistent with its objects,â€¨
To promote the alliance of the different nationalities,â€¨
The amicable settlement of international questions,â€¨
The great and general interests of peace.
â€ªFathers Day for Peaceâ€¬
Brave New Foundation