Help Us Celebrate Armistice Day 2020!
Over one hundred years ago the world celebrated peace as a universal principle. The first World War had just ended and nations mourning their dead collectively called for an end to all wars. Armistice Day was born and was designated as “a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated."
After World War II, the U.S. Congress decided to rebrand November 11 as Veterans Day. Honoring the warrior quickly morphed into honoring the military and glorifying war. Armistice Day was flipped from a day for peace into a day for displays of militarism.
Veterans For Peace has taken the lead in lifting up the original intention of November 11th – as a day for peace. As veterans we know that a day that celebrates peace, not war, is the best way to honor the sacrifices of veterans. We want generations after us to never know the destruction war has wrought on people and the earth.
Veterans For Peace has been celebrating Armistice Day almost since the organization's inception, with a few chapters doing yearly events. Since 2008, with the passing of an official Veterans For Peace resolution, it became a VFP national effort. Each year, chapters across the country "Reclaim Armistice Day" by pushing the celebration of peace into the national conversation on Veterans Day.
Veterans For Peace is calling on everyone to stand up for peace this Armistice Day. More than ever, the world faces a critical moment. Tensions are heightened around the world and the U.S. is engaged militarily in multiple countries, without an end in sight. Here at home we have seen the increasing militarization of our police forces and brutal crackdowns on dissent and people’s uprisings against state power. We must press our government to end reckless military interventions that endanger the entire world. We must build a culture of peace.
This year, Armistice Day celebrations will look a little different than in past years. Many of our chapters are hosting virtual actions instead of gathering in person. If you’re not sure how to arrange something like that, please email our membership coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have compiled a list of COVID-safe actions for you to take this year. We are asking VFP members to do what they can to keep the conversation going around peace and Armistice Day. Please let us know what you have planned by filling out this form.
- Fly the VFP flag from your yard: The VFP flag comes in two sizes and has grommets, which can be easily attached to any standard pole. Order your VFP flag from the VFP store by October 25th to ensure delivery in time for November 11th.
- Download & hang the Armistice Day Sign from your window (see image below): Hang the sign from your front window, or anywhere else you feel it would be most visible to others. Click the image below this list to download and print!
- Host a virtual peace vigil with your local peace groups: Call together your members and supporters by hosting a virtual action on Zoom. If you choose to meet in person this year, please wear masks and practice social distancing at your action. You can read the proclamation at your vigil and ring 11 bells for peace, as we do most years. Be sure to send us any photos of your action!
- Ring 11 bells for peace: Make it a community effort! Reach out to local churches, community centers, and schools to ring their bells at 11am. Here is a sample outreach letter from Chapter 27.
- Host a car caravan for peace: Pick a route and drive by your capital building or mayor's office: Call your members and supporters out together, decorate your cars and bring your VFP flags to organize a drive-by action celebrating Armistice Day as a day of peace.
- Attend the Stand Down Live - special Armistice Day edition!
- Send letters to the editor: Write from the heart and tell them why you’re a veteran for peace and why you celebrate Armistice Day.
- Order a bundle of Armistice Day materials: Send an email to email@example.com to get a bundle sent out to you. Order by Oct 25th to ensure delivery in time.
- Share the 2020 Armistice Day video (stay tuned!): We will have a special VFP video ready for distribution as Armistice Day approaches.
- Submit a proclamation to your city council: Reach out to your mayor, city council member, or county supervisor to create city and county proclamations in support of Armistice Day.
- Share the Liturgy of the Bells!: The Liturgy of the Bells is a great opportunity to reach out to local houses of worship to commemorate Armistice Day.
Click the image below to download & print our Armistice Day poster!
Chapter 13 - Tucson, AZ
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 10 AM MT – 11:30 AM MT
Location: Virtual Event
During the Chapter 13 virtual Armistice Day commemoration a large early 20th Century Bell will be wrung 11 times at the 11th hour of the 11th day of November, personal commemorations will be elicited, the VFP Armistice Day resolution and VFP Statement of Purpose will be read, in addition to other ideas yet to be found.
Please RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (718) 721-5527. ZOOM meeting number 954 102 5128 with password provided upon RSVP.
Chapter 51 - Syracuse, NY
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 10:30 AM ET
Location: Billings Park: at the corner of S. Salina Street and E. Adams Street in Syracuse, at the WW1 soldier statue
Chapter 51 of Veterans for Peace (VFP) and the Beyond War and Militarism Committee (BW&M), a joint committee of the Syracuse Peace Council and the CNY Solidarity Coalition, to invite you to join them in their effort to reclaim Armistice Day.
If you are interested in joining them, please contact Ron VanNorstrand at email@example.com.
Chapter 93 - Ann Arbor, MI
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 11 AM ET – Dusk
Location: Veterans Park, 2150 Jackson Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Veterans/Armistice Day memorial display of one marker for every Michigan soldier lost in the Iraq and Afghan wars (230 markers). The purpose of this display is to honor those who have fallen, to provide a place to grieve, and to educate the public about the costs of war, as well as the needs of those returning from conflicts. Peace ceremony at 11am.
Chapter 90 - Broome County, NY
Date/Time: Tuesday, November 10th, 10am EDT
Location: Virtual Event
David Swanson, author of War is a Lie and director of www.worldbeyoindwar.org will be online in a zoom directed mainly at high school students but anyone including college students are invited. It will be at 10 AM on November 10th. There is no school for many students on the 11th Armistice Day. No link will be given until high school teachers commit to being on the teach-in. The program will be recorded and available for anyone. The event is being paid for by Stu Naismith chapter 90 VFP and Peace Action of Broome County NY.
If you are a student interested in participating, please contact Jack Gilroy: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chapter 97 - Kansas City, MO
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 9AM CT – Noon CT
Location: National WWI Memorial in Kansas City, MO
The WWI Memorial's official Veterans Day event begins inside at 10am. Participants will stand outside of the Memorial entrance with VFP flags and then will ring a church bell 11 times at 11am.
Please dress appropriately for the cold weather.
Chapter 102 - Milwaukee, WI
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 7 PM CT – 8:15 PM CT
Location: Virtual Event
Milwaukee Veterans For Peace's 14th annual Armistice Day event is going virtual this year. View the poster.
- David Swanson - Executive Director of World BEYOND War, on "The Pro-War Candidate Has Defeated the Pro-War Candidate: Now What?"
- Fred Royal - President of Milwaukee NAACP, "The Cost of Peace."
- With music by Jason Moon and Jesse Freward
Chapter 104 - Evansville, IN
Date/Time: Wednesday, November 11th, 10 AM CT – 12 PM CT
Location: Oak Hill Cemetery, Evansville, IN
Chapter 104 will host a dedication ceremony of a progeny of the 100+ year old International Peace Tree that the chapter propagated. This tree will be located in the Veterans section of Evansville’s largest/oldest cemetery.
For more information, please contact Gary May: email@example.com