Monday, July 30, 2007

Give Peace a Chance

By Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu - Vice Speaker

On September 21, 2007, Hawaii will become the first state in the country to annually celebrate its own Peace Day. In honor of that day, which is celebrated throughout the world as the United Nations International Day of Peace, people of all ages from around the state are invited to submit an artistic expression of what "peace" means to them. The art work will be displayed at the State Capitol and award winners will be announced at a special ceremony.

I introduced the Peace Day bill on behalf of youth members of the Hawaii Buddhist Association. I was impressed that these young people cared enough about peace in the world to stick with it through the legislative process. We all need to start thinking more about how we, as individuals, can create peace. They say that life imitates art, and if that's the case, let's begin with our personal expressions of peace through art.

Here's how to submit expressions of peace:

Format: For this first year, art work format will be limited to 2-dimensional art such as paintings, drawing, prints or posters; and literary submissions 500 words or less, such as stories, essays and poetry.

Eligibility: Everyone! People of all ages are encouraged to participate.

Deadline: September 1, 2007

Information required: Please include your name, age, mailing address and telephone number. If desired, you may also include a brief bio and explanation of the piece submitted.

Mail to: Dr. Jeannie Lum, Matsunaga Institute for Peace, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Saunders Hall #723, 2424 Maile Way, Honolulu, Hawaii 96822.

Or drop off in person to: Office of Rep. Jon Riki Karamatsu, State Capitol, Room 427.

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