Celebrating peace in tumultuous times

Children clutching paper doves marched through Horton Park in St. Paul on September 22, led by a ten-foot dove puppet soaring through the autumn sunshine. Friends School of Minnesota celebrated Peace Day on the day after the United Nations-sanctioned International Day of Peace, in collaboration with representatives from the Iraqi American Reconciliation Project.The Friends School, directed by Lili Herbert, is dedicated to Quaker values including non-violence and peace. The school last week invited the Iraqi American Reconciliation Project (IARP) representatives to come to the elementary school every day for two weeks to teach the students about Iraqi heritage and traditional music.The Peace Day celebration included children packed into a gymnasium singing traditional Iraqi songs such as Assalamu Alaikum, a procession led by a giant dove puppet and a moment of silence. According to the Friends School of MN blog,“The International Day of Peace event will be the kickoff for Friends School’s involvement in the Water for Peace project, sponsored by the Iraqi American Reconciliation Project (IARP). Continue Reading

THREE ISSUES | Money in politics, starving children, war

Reggie Cruz has recently moved back to Minneapolis from California, to take care of his ailing mother. In his late 20s, he has lived and worked in both Minnesota and, for the past seven years, in California. TCDP: What are the three issues you care about most in the upcoming election?Reggie: The first issue is fundraising money. Politicians say they use their fundraising money, but who knows where the money is actually going? All we can go by is what they say.TCDP: What is your second issue?Reggie: I think the U.S. should mind its own business and start worrying about their own issues. We have starving kids over here. Continue Reading

THREE ISSUES | Thought from a non-voter

Quinn works as a barista at Espresso Royale, a swim instructor at the YWCA, and studies biology and youth studies at the University of Minnesota. She is from Winnipeg Manitoba currently living in downtown Minneapolis. She can’t vote because she’s Canadian, but she still has opinions about what’s important here.Quinn: I could not vote for a president who doesn’t support gay rights openly. I could not support a president who does not champion reproductive rights for women.Fiona: Can you be more specific about what you mean by reproductive rights for women?Quinn: Making abortion illegal, funding cuts to Planned Parenthood, making Plan B illegal, not allowing biology based sex-ed – It’s a whole narrow mind-set. I don’t like that.Fiona: Can you be more specific about your first issue, “gay rights?”Quinn: You should be able to marry whom you choose, that’s common sense. Continue Reading