The day after we invaded Afghanistan in October 2011, I put on the peace pin I had worn back in 1968. You know the old pins with the long pin stick that could impale you if you bend over.
Unfortunately I lost it the very next day when I tried on a sweater and it was pulled out and gone by the time I returned. But I found another pin and have worn it every day since. In fact, I also bought a bunch of little peace pins and handed them out to my students.
On this day, grieving the loss of lives from the bombing in Brussels, I feel the need to talk about peace. I want to rid myself of the helpless, powerless feelings and talking about peace, of love and flowers and good things, may help me achieve it.
The peace sign was originally designed in 1958 by British artist Gerald Holtom for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. According to teachpeace.com, the symbol is a combination of the semaphore signals for the letters "N" and "D," standing for "nuclear disarmament". In semaphore,
the letter "N" is formed by a person holding two flags in an inverted
"V," and the letter "D" is formed by holding one flag pointed straight
up and the other pointed straight down.
The symbol was not copyrighted and was used for disarmament protests within the United States in the early 60s. By the end of the decade, the symbol had been adopted as a generic peace sign.
Are we still in the Middle East, Iraq and Afghanistan, fighting for whatever we are fighting for? Yes; thus, I continue to wear my peace pin every day. My grandgirl gives me things with peace signs. I give my grandgirl things with peace signs.
Mother Theresa once said that a smile is the beginning of peace. John Lennon said we should give peace a chance. And Pete Seeger, well Seeger said that he swears it's not too late. Word.