Peace Journalism students
speak on Peace.
Students reciting "The Stream and The Call"
The Stream and The Call
By Crystal Penix
We take it for granted
And enjoy without a second thought
Never wondering what we would do without it.
We drift by, day by day
Like a twig in a stream
Unaware of what’s beyond our banks
Satisfied with our ignorance
Our stream bubbles along
Trickling through the peaceful countryside
As petals drift down from the sky
And the sun shines on us through the leaves
Meanwhile, others are trapped in the rapids
Tossed about by the water
Barely able to stay afloat
Franticly searching for the calm stream
Their rapids races towards a cliff
Carrying them past warring armies
Broken tree branches thunder past them
And they wilt beneath a scorching sun
They cried out for help,
And when their cry reached our stream
We ignored it
And continued to float along our stream
We enjoyed our peaceful stream too much
We didn’t want to leave it
So, we didn’t.
We left them to drown.
But they survived.
They learned how to endure
They learned to find peace even in chaos
And they did it all on their own.
Now they stand tall and strong
They escaped the rapids on their own
And are making their own stream
Determined to find a lasting peace
And now their voices reach our stream again
We hear not pleas for help
But a call
A call to stand up and share our peace, share theirs
A call to look beyond our banks
And see what lays beyond, see the rapids
A call to share the message of peace
To stand with the strong.
We have a chance to make a difference,
To lift our voices for change,
Speak for those who are unheard,
And stand together as human beings.
A chance to speak for peace
Will we take it, or let it slip away?
No, we will speak for peace
And shout for change.
What is peace?
What does Peace mean to you?
Peace and Photography
By Almendra Melendez
How does photography help others feel motivated, better, happier? What types of emotions do photographs bring? Can peace be photographed?
Over the last couple of years, we have seen how photography has helped bring memories to our hearts. Not only have they made us feel close to our relatives or friends, but also encouraged us to help others and be better people. Photographs can be very powerful, yet difficult to capture with emotions and feelings and the many stories that a simple image might have. There have been times in which I have seen photographs that have saddened my soul. Just as I’ve seen photographs that have brought joy to my heart. Photography shapes our views; it is a way to express ourselves.
Peace, begins within yourself. It starts inside of you. It then comes out of you. As the time progresses, you start showing what peace is like, through your actions. Photos can be used as a medium to express peace and love towards others. Images like “Jan Rose Kasmir Offering a Flower to Soldiers” or the image of this journalist who crosses a bridge to rescue a baby during the Civil War, impact the whole world. Photos, are not just photos. People like John Noltner, find ways of expressing peace by photographing people and their stories.
Every single image, has a message, a story to tell, and a person to impact. Peace can be found in many ways, and photography is just one of them.
Mansky, Jackie. “A Photographer's 40,000-Mile Journey to Find What Peace Means to Americans.” Smithsonian.com, Smithsonian Institution, 30 Sept. 2016, www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/photographers-new-book-shares-peace-his-mind-180960554/.
“77 Most Powerful Photos Ever Taken In Human History.” KickVick, 23 Sept. 2014, www.kickvick.com/77-powerful-photos/.
Connection between trees and peace
By: Victor Solano
Planting trees is a magnificent way to promote peace, but it is not always clear, as to how planting a tree can propagate peace.
Trees are a symbol of life and its continuity. Planting them promotes life everywhere they are planted. The promotion of life spreads and begins to make people aware that to maintain life there must be peace on earth. There are trees that can live to be hundreds of years if the environment they find themselves in is left in peace and is undisturbed. The same can happen in our planet. Children could grow up to be eighty years old or even older, if their environments were to be peaceful instead of war-like. Families could thrive, like trees do if they were given the chance instead of being cut down along with their hopes and desires.
Aside from symbolizing life, trees also are a symbol of family and the connection between individuals. Family does not necessarily consist of blood-related individuals but can be a group of anybody that is particularly close to each other. Connections among people are necessary and inevitable, and we need to learn how to make the best out of them. Peace and harmony surrounds those that share these beautiful connections, and these connections can be furthered to include everyone that we meet. Spreading positivity and spreading peace needs to be done, just as a tree spreads its branches and intertwines its roots.
The anatomy and growth of a tree also promotes/symbolizes peace. A tree starts out small, just like peace does. Peace must start within ourselves, and a tree comes from within a seed. The sprout is the beginning of peace, then it starts to grow. As it grows it turns into a beautiful organism that is capable of bearing fruit or shade, just like the peace we promote will bear a better future for the next generation. A tree’s branches and roots symbolize the connections of peace that are created. The trunk symbolizes the foundation for peace, which is love. Finally, the leaves and fruits or flowers are the outcome of peace.
In terms of the environment, trees help in several ways that help bring peace environmentally. First, they produce the oxygen that is essential to human life. They also help reduce erosion and the heavy effects of flooding. Wildlife thrives better, as there are many types of wildlife that depend on trees for things, such as protection and food. Trees help create a balance in our planet that keeps environmental peace.
Coming together to leave our mark of peace upon the world can be done by planting trees. The dedication and care that is necessary to raise a tree until it bears its fruits is the kind of care and dedication that is needed to promote and spread peace worldwide. There are many that plant trees to promote peace, especially on September 21st of each year, when International Day of Peace is celebrated. FFA even offers grants for planting to those interested. So, let’s plant and hope that our efforts build us a better future!
“The City of Bowling Green, KY.” Benefits of Planting Trees - Tree Advisory Board - Bowling Green, KY - Official Municipal Web Site, www2.bgky.org/tree/benefits.php.
“About the Campaign.” Learning about Forests, www.leaf.global/about-plant-tree-peace/.
“Tree Symbolism and Meanings | Symbols & Interpretations.” Universe of Symbolism, www.universeofsymbolism.com/tree-symbolism.html.
Music and Peace
By Phelepe Lopez
Music has been around the world since mankind started, music has always been something we turn to when trying to find peace and tranquility. There are many forms of music and each genre of music is a way to connect to different people. But at the end of the day people listen to music to express themselves. One of the most heart filled genres of music is jazz. Jazz has been around since about the earlier 20th century and people would put their souls into it. Jazz brought people together when they were sad to send some energy into their lives, or if they were happy jazz made them bubble over with joy. It would bring different races together, so they could express their woes and ideas in an early suppressed American life. Therefore, as jazz continues to play on radios and on television throughout the world it will always remind us of how it brought this country together.
Jazz first started in 1917 with the Original Dixieland Jazz Band who recorded the “Lively Stable Blues”. And unlike most other bands at this time, the Dixieland Band played real jazz, not ragtime music. This newfound jazz music contained a constant walking bassline, a rhythm section of piano and drum set, and a select variation of wind instruments that focused on a main melody and strong improvisation. Jazz was founded and made famous in New Orleans which was heavily populated with African-Americans. But this music was for everyone no matter the color of your skin, the shade of your hair, the color of your eyes. Jazz music was for your heart, blood, and soul. These are things you cannot take from a human being. This is what linked the musician to the heart of the people, this was something they could share without being punished. This was the start of the Jazz era in America.
It was also the idea of playing music with a band without needing written music that made jazz so popular, their solo sections all come from their hearts. If you felt like playing bebop you would crush out as many notes as possible, if you felt sad you would play a slow blues feel. There was a wide range of emotions when it came to Jazz, all which were used to express yourself. A blues feel is a slow deep swing patter that you could hear someone on a street corner playing trying to make a couple extra bucks, or maybe in a fancy dinner with his little combo band. A funk feel tends to be faster with a wide variety of notes with a harsh articulation pattern. There was also vocal jazz, with amazing singers like Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and Frank Sinatra. All of them sang a different style but were at the top of the music leaderboards all because of their voice and being backed a jazz band.
My personal favorite jazz artist was Charlie “the Bird” Parker, well known for his bebop and amazing improvisation. Best known for his pieces Yardbird Suite, Parkers Mood, Orinthology, and Summertime. All were pieces expressing Charlies emotions on how his life was and how he experienced it. As an African-American man Charlie decided to play the alto sax at the age fifteen. He would later drop out of high school to fully pursue his music career of jazz. He got plenty of opportunities playing with jazz bands as he played at a local nigh club in New York. After his father’s death his career took off as he recorded his first album. His stardom was inevitable, and he even gained the nickname “bird” along the way. Since with his music he was as free as a bird.
But as you can see jazz music was a growing genre that presented many opportunities to become famous and truly express yourself. Even if you didn’t become famous across the nation you could still draw a crowd and connect with people who have that same inner funk and emotion as you. Jazz really gets the soul going, it makes people want to move and live life to the fullest. Its amazing how music can bring people this close together, When African-Americans were being poorly treated by white people and were being suppressed they turned to jazz to show their frustration or sorrow. In some songs its as if you can feel what the artist is going through even if there is no words in the song. The notes coming out of their instrument and the emotion in their sound will wrap around your heart and bring you closer to how they feel. When they play a love song you can tell they are trying to win a woman’s heart or keep it, like in the son “When a Man Loves a Woman”. You can tell what the message of the song is whether it’s the instrumental version only or the vocal version. Either way this music is so full of emotion it is the epitome of how music should be played. It should come from your heart and be able to bring people together no matter how hard times are. Use it to bring people together and unite with tranquility and anything can be achieved. Jazz has been around through the toughest times and always kept people and races together. It has no barriers and it has and always will keep humans banded together at the heart and soul.
Some of my most highly recommended jazz songs
Charlie Parker- Summertime
Charlie Parker- Yardbird Suite
Charlie Parker- Red Cross
Dave Brubeck- Take Five
John Coltrane- In a Sentimental Mood
Paul Desmond- Emily
Frank Sinatra- Fly me to the Moon
Charlie Haden- Always Say Goodbye
Sonny Rollins- ‘Round Midnight
James Moody- Soultrane
Yoga, Peace, and Meditation
By Adylene Lopez
In a world full of problems and wars it is difficult to think that one day there could be peace. But peace is at our fingertips, it's just a matter of taking action. We cannot change the world if we don’t take the time to change ourselves for the better. Hate creates more hate, violence creates more violence, therefore we must learn to be peaceful to bring more peace.
The practice of Yoga and meditation can help us achieve inner peace, and why not start here in our school? Yoga and meditation have many physical benefits, but the most significant is the impact that Yoga and Meditation have in your interior.
According to Mayo Clinic the practice of Yoga and Meditation can help us
Gain a new perspective on stressful situations
Build skills to manage your stress
Focus on the present
Reduce negative emotions
Increase imagination and creativity
Increase patience and tolerance
The best part is that these benefits can be acquired through different types of Meditation. Fred Cicetti in Live Science.com, talks about the different types of meditation and the way to perform them.
Zazen: To perform this form of meditation you will sit still and concentrate on your breathing.
Kinhin: A form of meditation that can be performed by walking and directing your whole attention to your feet.
Transcendental Meditation: This form of meditation is performed through sound. You will repeat the word “mantra” and shift your focus to the sound of the word.
Guided Meditation: This form of meditation is performed by imagining images that are relaxing to you.
Tai Chi: Through Tai Chi you will perform graceful slow postures while practicing deep breathing.
Yoga: Through postures and deep breathing, yoga will help you achieve a state of calmness while increasing your flexibility.
The Techniques provided are only some of the several existent techniques of meditation. I encourage you to do your own personal research if you are interested ,or to check out the links below 😊
If we learn to maintain peace during the hardest and most stressful moments of our life, we will be peaceful in every situation. Remember, just like violence creates more violence, peace will create more peace.
Peace Through a Garden
by Darbi Harrington
Many may ask how planting a garden is a representation of peace, but there is more to it than just planting a seed. Agriculture is the basis of our lives, it connects us all. No mater someone’s background, they rely on Agriculture to survive. You may not understand this, but agriculture is the science or practice of farming, including cultivation of the soil for the growing of crops and the rearing of animals to provide food, wool, and other products. It is where we get our food, clothing, housing, everything connects back to agriculture. Through planting a garden, students will be able to connect with others on a level they wouldn’t normally through something that already connects us.
Panyadoli High School has started a “Peace Tree Project”, where all the students got to plant their own tree to take care of and watch them grow. These kids have seen and dealt with horrible situations, but they have found a way to find the peace out of planting trees. Our Deming FFA Chapter has a plan to plant a garden through the National Living to Serve grant. This grant is presented by the National FFA Organization to chapters to use in educating and helping the Chapters community. We want students to be able to be responsible for growing their own food and then taking that food and giving it to people that are in need in our community. Students do not realize the work that goes into the produce they buy at the store, through this garden they are being educated. Our community always has people who face struggles and need help, so our students can help them through a peaceful act. The garden will be cared for by students with a variety of backgrounds which will bring them together, build friendships, and connect them on a deeper level.
Instead of trying to find a new way of coming together in peace, lets us something that already connects us all, Agriculture. Through agriculture we can connect the students at Deming High School with those at Panyadoli High School. When we facetime the students at Panyadoli, our kids will have a better understanding of their “Peace Tree Project” and then they can share their experiences of growing a garden with each other. In the Fall of 2018, Deming High School will hope to start their first Peace Garden, with the hope of reaching all the students at school and people in the community as well as students at Panyadoli High School.
The Olympics and Sports: Bringing Peace into the World
By - Daniel Snyder
Sports have always been able to bring peace on their own as they bring people together, fans and athletes alike, to work towards a common goal. The same could be said about the Olympic Games but on a much grander. How do the Olympics bring peace? Just how impactful have the games been to many over the years? The Olympic Games were actually built around the notion of bringing peace. For example, according to the Olympics’ official website, the goal of the Olympic Movement was and has been, “to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport practiced without discrimination of any kind, in a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play.” The Olympics provide for a way to not only bring all these countries together in a peaceful manner, but to also unite the people within each country. This I best seen at the start and end of each of the games where the world can see all these countries coming together and cheering each other on in a peaceful ceremony. Countries can unite and stand together by their athletes, dropping any tension between themselves, and instead just enjoy this inspirational event.
There are plenty of examples of past Olympics where we have seen just how much of a difference it makes in our world. For example, in 1972 Mary Peters found her home in Northern Ireland in deep conflict with riots, people being murdered or injured, and things like bombs going off every minute from the great divide. Peters even received death threats from people warning her to not go back home. Despite these challenges, Mary was able to win a gold medal and set a new world record. She decided to go back home and returned home to people smiling and a celebration from people of both sides. She became a beacon and someone to rally behind in this country that was so shaken.
Another story took place in 1994. Almost a million people were killed in the Rwanda genocide during this time. However, Eric Murangwa was an international soccer player that was able to not only learn lessons through the sport of soccer but it also helped save his life. During this genocide, Eric’s teammates helped hide him so that he would not be killed in the genocide. Eric credited their kindness to their, “sportsman spirits,” as people on the team were looking out for one another unlike the people that were killing countless every day. Eric lost 35 family members during this genocide but this did not stop him from his ultimate goal. Eric later founded the Football for Hope, Peace and Unity (FHPU) in 2010. He did this to promote the things that he had learned from his past experiences so that he could pass on the lessons that he learned to a new generation and help rebuild the nation. The children participating can learn about peace, unity, and become educated so that they can learn lessons and be impactful people in their future. With this program Eric has been able to give children the same chance that he was given back when he survived the genocide. This did not deal with the Olympics directly but it is still a great example of what sports can do.
The Olympics and sports do not only bring unity and hope but they also provide a place where people can inspire others and the world around them. One of the best stories is when people are able to overcome adversity on their journeys. An example of this is Hassiba Boulmerka, a 1500m runner for Algeria. During the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Algeria found itself in a civil war that ended up taking 250,000 lives. Boulmerka was seen as a traitor for running in shorts and a short sleeve and people said that she was going against her Muslim religion because of it. She received death threats and was forced to move away because of her country’s dire circumstances. Despite all the adversity that she faced from within her own country, she was able to put it all behind her and run at the games. She took the gold medal in her event which was the first ever Olympic gold for Algeria. She became an icon because of this and a perfect role model. This was perfect for equality because those who thought that she could not do this were proven wrong by her performance. She inspired how anyone could work through adversity to achieve their goals. For women especially, she showed how they should not let others tell them how they have to live their lives.
Sports and the Olympic Games have and will continue to not just be entertainment but much more. There have been countless inspiring stories about unity, peace, equality, and more that have inspired people through the conflicts that they may face in their lives. It also brings the countries of the world together and allows for people to unite for a common goal. Maybe more people can pay attention to the games and see how at the end of the day, there is so much that people of all over have alike and we should celebrate that instead of getting caught up in our differences. There will be more stories in the future and in a world that can be filled with so much conflict, it is heartening and inspirational that sport and the Olympics will always be there to set an example create more opportunities for more people.
Arnold, Chloe. “Hassiba Boulmerka: Defying Death Threats to Win Gold.” BBC News, BBC, 11 Feb. 2012, www.bbc.com/news/magazine-16962799.
McCourt, Ian. “50 Stunning Olympic Moments No32: Mary Peters Wins Gold in 1972.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 22 May 2012, www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2012/may/22/olympic-moments-mary-peters-1972.
“Olympics | Together We Can Change The World | IOC.” PyeongChang 2018 Olympics - Schedule, Results, Medals and News, www.olympic.org/peace/#/.
Finding Peace in Politics
by Alexander Gardea
Politics, while the topic has always been deemed as a controversial one, they are even more controversial today. The recent shifts in our modern-day government and the supports of said government have changed the view of politics in the most negative way possible. People will hate each other simply over their political party preference. While we have different parties for the reason of different views and opinions they have now become a symbol of right and wrong. The whole idea of right and wrong in politics has stemmed from the poor examples of leadership set by both sides. Due to the actions of a few “bad eggs” the rest of the party is seen negatively. A known offender ran for senate as a Republican with support from the President, while this may be some of the poor leaders within said party this does not mean every person who identifies as such supports the views of every member.
The issue is we have begun to see each other as a label rather than as a person, it is a clear form of prejudice that people assume all Republicans are racists who hate immigrants and that all Democrats are liberals who want to take guns away and allow immigrants to flood the country. We no longer truly listen, understand, and debate ideas we dismiss and get upset.
To be able to peacefully interact in our political climate we must listen, understand, if we cannot understand we must do our best to put ourselves in the shoes of our fellow man/woman.
In my personal experience I have yet to dismiss a person over their politics instead I try to understand why they think this way and how I can better see their point and take the positive things to mind and try to help them understand the issues in their negative views. We don’t have to agree with everyone, that is just unrealistic and will never happen. We can however listen to each other, understand each other, and respect each other. If we cannot understand each other, we can at least respect each other and “agree to disagree”. Accept the fact that we all have different ideologies. Only then will we find a way to peacefully debate in our political ventures.