Albert Einstein said: “You cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war.” The actions are an antithesis of each other, yet many forces are mobilized in the name of peace.
According to Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC) Faculty Advisor Rebecca Glasscock, Americans do not understand the concept of positive peace because we rarely think about it, war has been engrained in our consciousness, and it’s hard to envision a world without it. Glasscock defined negative peace as constantly preparing for war and positive peace as a sense of equality for all within society.
“A lot of people don’t know what the alternative is [to war] and can’t imagine it,” Glasscock said.
She said many people cannot imagine what the outcome would be without war as an option. “If we don’t have war, then what do we have…we have a culture of war, how do you create a culture of peace?”
To answer this question, Glasscock is organizing the Second Annual Peace and Global Citizenship Fair. Taking place Saturday, May 19, on the grassy grounds of BCTC behind the Oswald Building, the festival offers more than you may initially expect. It is an entire day consisting of local food, music, venders, art, workshops and much more. But the main goal of the festival is to “come together to engage on issues of peace, sustainability and global understanding.”
And the festival proved to be a greater success than Glasscock had ever dreamed. Last year over 800 people attended the festival, exceeding the coordinators’ expectations by about 400.
“It ended up being a lot of fun…I think it was a lot more fun than people expected it would be,” Glasscock said. “Some people attended the first year just to be polite, but they all left saying that they couldn’t wait for the [next] festival.”
The activities are very conscience of environmental, physical and mental health. There will be several workshops teaching those who attend how to plant their own gardens to promote local food growth, as well as vendors selling native plants. Also, workshops on sustainable communities and energy conservation will be offered. There will be a table for old cell phone donations and bicycle donations – all donated bikes will be restored and sent to the free bike rental program at the University of Kentucky, Wildcat Wheels. If you aren’t ready to give your bike up just yet, minor bike restoration and tune-ups will be offered, encouraging alternative modes of transportation other than automobiles.
As for personal physical health, yoga will be taught by Anita Courtney, a certified Kripalu Yoga instructor. Her techniques teach students how to cultivate inner peace and to learn tools for incorporating relaxation into daily lifestyles. Courtney ensures that what she teaches is suitable for all levels of experience (or lack there of).
“She is really very talented,” said Glasscock.
The workshops are expected to begin around noon, lasting until 5 p.m. There will be a break in activities and the evening benefit concert for Howe Charities will begin at 5:30 p.m. Those in attendance will be encouraged to donate $5, but as Glasscock said, “no one will be turned away.”
Performing musicians will be Alma Gitana, Mitch Barrett, Drumming for Peace led by Jerry Moody, and several others.
“We really want to promote local music,” Glasscock said. “There is so much talent and diversity with these [musicians].”
But while the festival is a day of fun, the goal and purpose is clear: “To be on the path of sustainability.” According to Glasscock, if the United States would pay closer attention to its people and the goal of peace, equality would be more evident and the country would be more stable – positive peace. Glasscock hopes the festival will make people more aware of this and put people on the path toward sustainability.
“We don’t even think about war because it is so engrained in us…we just accept it,” she said. “The festival helps people learn more about how to live sustainably and understand other parts of the world.”
For more information on activities and times for the festival, log on to www.peace2day.org.