Rice for Peace
- Subject: [cg] Rice for Peace
- From: "Alan Mason" firstname.lastname@example.org
- Date: Sun, 2 Mar 2003 17:21:02 -0800
With our common interest in food & peace, this seemed appropriate to
forward. Also see: http://boulder.co.us.mennonite.net/ &
Subject: FW: The food of peace, it's a bag of rice
Read on for another way to take action....
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This amazing idea from the Boulder Mennonite Church
There is a grassroots campaign underway to protest war in Iraq in a
simple, but potentially powerful way.
Place 1/2 cup uncooked rice in a small plastic bag (a snack-size bag or
sandwich bag work fine). Squeeze out excess air and seal the bag. Wrap it
in a piece of paper on which you have written, "If your enemies are hungry,
feed them. Romans 12:20.
Please send this rice to the people of Iraq; do not attack them."
Place the paper and bag of rice in an envelope (either a letter-sized or
padded mailing envelope--both are the same cost to mail) and address them to
President George Bush White House,
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500
Attach $1.06 in postage. (Three 37-cent stamps equal $1.11.)
Drop this in the mail. It is important to act NOW so that President Bush
gets the letters ASAP.
In order for this protest to be effective, there must be hundreds of
thousands of such rice deliveries to the White House. We can do this if
you each forward this message to your friends and family.
There is a positive history of this protest! In the 1950s, Fellowship of
Reconciliation began a similar protest, which is credited with influencing
President Eisenhower against attacking China.
"In the mid-1950s, the pacifist Fellowship of Reconciliation, learning of
famine in the Chinese mainland, launched a 'Feed Thine Enemy' campaign.
Members and friends mailed thousands of little bags of rice to the White
House with a tag quoting the Bible, "If thine enemy hunger, feed him." As
far as anyone knew for more than ten years, the campaign was an abject
failure. The President did not acknowledge receipt of the bags publicly;
certainly, no rice was ever sent to China.
"What nonviolent activists only learned a decade later was that the
campaign played a significant, perhaps even determining role in preventing
nuclear war. Twice while the campaign was on, President Eisenhower met with
the Joint Chiefs of Staff to consider U.S. options in the conflict with
China over two islands, Quemoy and Matsu. The generals twice recommended
the use of nuclear weapons. President Eisenhower each time turned to his
aide and asked how many little bags of rice had come
in. When told they numbered in the tens of thousands, Eisenhower told the
generals that as long as so many Americans were expressing active interest
in having the U.S. feed the Chinese, he certainly wasn't going to consider
using nuclear weapons against them."
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