Once again, white poppies and white doves have been appearing and are being sold during the annual Remembrance Week. (Wonder where the money goes.) As president of the Whitehorse Legion I strongly object to the white poppies being used in direct competition with the Remembrance poppy and against the registered trademark laws attached to all poppies, regardless of colour or shape, legally registered by the Royal Canadian Legion throughout Canada.
I certainly hope Iegal actions will be taken in this matter.
In 1981, the United Nations declared the third Tuesday of September would be devoted to commemorating and to strengthening the ideals of peace. The first International Day of Peace a.k.a. “World Peace Day” was held on the 21st of September 1982 and henceforth on the third Tuesday of September till 2001 when the UN changed the date of such to the 21st day of September each year.
In much the same manner, that dates Remembrance Day as the 11th day of November each year.
These two dates, these two days of commemorating, are not interchangeable. They have been set aside for two distinct and unique occasions.
As to the use of the white dove, I welcome its use at the proper time of the year, namely on the 21st of September each year, and only on that date.
When the UN changed the date of World Peace Day, it also adopted the “white peace dove carrying an olive branch” as the symbol of peace. On the 21st of September 2006, the first Peace Parade was held in the UK. In 2007 the UN further called for “a minute of silence” to commemorate World Peace Day.
Of interest as well, in 1968, the Roman Catholic Church designated the first day of January of each year as World Day of Peace.
As a veteran, I support World Peace Day and every effort for world peace. This is exactly the reason why Canada has sent so many of its citizens to fight, all around the world. This is exactly the reason why so many of our comrades have given their lives: peace, freedom, liberty, democracy and our present way of life. You do not achieve world peace by illegally selling peace symbols at street corners.
World peace is the reason why we had troops fighting in Europe in the First and Second world wars. Facta, Non Verba.
World peace is the reason why we had troops fighting for the freedom of Korea in the ‘50s. Facta, Non Verba.
Peace is the reason why I served with NATO in Germany from 1962 to 1965, and again from 1968 to 1970. Peace is the reason why I served with the United Nations Forces in Cyprus in 1966, in 1967 and in 1977, in an attempt to keep the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots from killing each other.
Peace is the reason why I served again with the United Nations Forces, as a military observer, in Lebanon in 1985, in Syria in 1986 and along the borders of lsrael during that period.
Peace is the reason why we had troops in Croatia, Bosnia, Honduras, Haiti, Pakistan, Kashmir and many other locations around the world. Peace is the reason why we have troops fighting in Afghanistan at the moment. Facta, Non Verba.
I respectfully request those presently involved with the illegal sale of peace doves and the white poppies, to first stop using the poppy as their symbol and secondly to resolve holding World Peace Day on the 21st of September, each year, as designated, and not during Remembrance Week. (I still wonder where that money goes.)
Further, I offer my assistance to them, to organize a proper World Peace Day at the proper date. With the understanding they will register the white peace dove as their symbol, legally register as either a charitable organization or a not-for-profit organization, will respect appropriate laws regarding such organizations and finally hold World Peace Day on the 21st day of September each year, and no other dates.
I am sure many veterans and Legion members would also assist them at that time.
After all, peace is what we fought and died for, please do remember and respect that.
But for now, please get out of our way and let us remember those who died for our freedom, our liberty, our democracy and ultimately for world peace.
Lest we forget.
Comrade Red Grossinger, president,