International Peace Day Celebration at Montgomery College (VIDEO)
The Peace and Justice Studies Community of Montgomery College, Rockville Campus, hosted an event on Sept. 25 celebrating the International Day of Peace- a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace among all nations and all people.
Randall Amster, author, activist, lawyer, and director of the Peace and Justice Program at Georgetown University, spoke to an audience of students, educators, and members of the community about the meaning of peace.
“The idea behind the peace day is to have one day where we self-consciously focus on the cause of peace. … The purpose of this event is to be part of that larger global conversation,” Amster said.
The resolution was established on September 21, 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. This year’s theme is “Right of Peoples to Peace,” which marks the 30th anniversary of the declaration.
During the event, students had the chance to ask questions and take notes while Amster explained the significance of nonviolence. He remarked that things should be marked as basic needs to someone’s existence such as food, water, housing and clothing, education, health and fair work.
“You are part of something larger than yourselves. What you do in your lives actually matter. … Peace isn’t something that you awake one day and say ‘Let’s get it going,'” Amster said.
Alex Conrad, Montgomery College student, said he was satisfied with Amster’s answers and ideas, and believes that communication is the key point of education.
“There’s definitely a lot you can take away from this event… The idea that peace doesn’t necessarily start with the government; it can start with the people itself as you saw with Ghandi and Martin Luther King, Jr.,” Conrad said.
Amster hoped students would take from today’s conversation the idea that peace matters and “It’s not meant to just be words on a page or ideals … that achieving peace isn’t something that we should put out there in the long range goal but we should be more actively engaged and demanding it,” he said.
The Montgomery College Peace and Justice Studies Program is offering classes for the Spring 2015 semester such as “Introduction to Peace and Justice” and “International Conflict Resolution.”