INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE ELIMINATION OF VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: NOVEMBER 25, 2014

 

INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE ELIMINATION OF VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

Quick Facts

The United Nations’ (UN) International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women raises public awareness of violence against women in all countries around the world and at all levels of society. It is observed each year on November 25.

Local names

Name Language
International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women English
Día Internacional de la Eliminación de la Violencia contra la Mujer Spanish
יום המאבק הבינלאומי למניעת אלימות נגד נשים Hebrew
اليوم العالمي للقضاء على العنف ضد المرأة Arabic
여성에 대한 폭력의 근절을위한 국제의 날 Korean
Internationaler Tag gegen Gewalt an Frauen German

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women 2015

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The United Nations’ (UN) International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is an occasion for governments, international organizations and non-governmental organizations to raise public awareness of violence against women. It has been observed on November 25 each year since 2000.

Violence against women is an issue that UN and many others take seriously.

©iStockphoto.com/funky-data

What do people do?

Various activities are arranged around the world to draw attention to the need for continuing action to eliminate violence against women, projects to enable women and their children to escape violence and campaigns to educate people about the consequences of violence against women. Locally, women’s groups may organize rallies, communal meals, fundraising activities and present research on violence against women in their own communities.

An ongoing campaign that people are encouraged to participate in, especially around this time of the year when awareness levels for the day are high, is the “Say NO to Violence Against Women campaign”. Through the campaign, anyone can add their name to a growing movement of people who speak out to put a halt to human rights violations against women.

Public life

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

On November 25, 1960, three sisters, Patria Mercedes Mirabal, María Argentina Minerva Mirabal and Antonia María Teresa Mirabal, were assassinated in the Dominican Republic on the orders of the Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo. The Mirabel sisters fought hard to end Trujillo’s dictatorship. Activists on women’s rights have observed a day against violence on the anniversary of the deaths of these three women since 1981.

On December 17, 1999, November 25 was designated as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women by the UN General Assembly. Each year observances around the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women concentrate on a particular theme, such as “Demanding Implementation, Challenging Obstacles” (2008).

Symbols

Events around the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women are coordinated by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). The logo of this organization consists of “UNIFEM”. The letters “U” and “N” are in blue and the letters “I”, “F”, “E” and “M” are in a darker shade of this color. An image of a dove surrounded by olive branches is to the right of the word. The image of the dove incorporates the international symbol for “woman” or “women”. This is based on the symbol for the planet Venus and consists of a ring on top of a “plus” sign.

International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women Observances

 

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Sat Nov 25 2000 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sun Nov 25 2001 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Mon Nov 25 2002 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Tue Nov 25 2003 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Thu Nov 25 2004 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Fri Nov 25 2005 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sat Nov 25 2006 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sun Nov 25 2007 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Tue Nov 25 2008 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Wed Nov 25 2009 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Thu Nov 25 2010 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Fri Nov 25 2011 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sun Nov 25 2012 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Mon Nov 25 2013 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Tue Nov 25 2014 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Wed Nov 25 2015 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Fri Nov 25 2016 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sat Nov 25 2017 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Sun Nov 25 2018 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Mon Nov 25 2019 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance
Wed Nov 25 2020 International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women United Nations observance

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IN REMEMBRANCE: 11-23-2014

MARION BARRY, FORMER MAYOR OF WASHINGTON

 

Marion Barry in His Own Words

The former Washington mayor reflects on his life and his new memoir.

Video by A.J. Chavar on Publish Date July 1, 2014. Photo by Gabriella Demczuk/The New York Times.

His death was confirmed by his family.

Mr. Barry died at United Medical Center in Southeast Washington just hours after he was released from Howard University Hospital on Saturday. He admitted himself on Thursday, saying that he did not feel well, although no specific medical problems were mentioned. On Sunday night, the medical examiner’s office ruled that he died of heart disease.

Mr. Barry had had various health problems in recent years. He had a kidney transplant in 2009 and was also treated for high blood pressure, diabetes and anemia. He underwent surgery for prostate cancer in 1995.

Mr. Barry’s death comes just months after the publication of his autobiography, “Mayor for Life: The Incredible Story of Marion Barry Jr.”

Elected mayor four times — in 1978, 1982, 1986 and 1994 — Mr. Barry left the mayor’s office for good early in 1999 and then worked as an investment banker. But politics was never far from his mind. In 2004 he was elected to the District of Columbia Council from a hard-pressed section in Southeast Washington, a district he represented until his death.

Mr. Barry was a charismatic yet confounding politician. Admirers saw him as a Robin Hood who gave hope to poor black residents. His detractors saw a shameless rogue who almost ruined the city by stuffing its payroll with cronies and hacks and letting services decay. Indisputably, he was a political Lazarus with a gift for convincing his followers that their hopes and disappointments were his, too.

On Jan. 18, 1990, Mayor Barry was arrested in a Washington hotel room while smoking crack cocaine and fondling a woman who was not his wife. The arrest, videotaped in an undercover operation, caused a sensation, but it was hardly a surprise: The public had known of his womanizing for years, and there had been rumors of drug use. Nor was he a stranger to the bottle.

Convicted of a misdemeanor cocaine possession, Mr. Barry was sentenced to six months in prison. His fall from grace was especially poignant for those old enough to remember the bright promise and idealism of his youth.

He was born on March 6, 1936, in Itta Bena, Miss. His father, also named Marion, died when he was 4, and his mother, Mattie, moved to Memphis, where she remarried. Her new husband, David Cummings, was a butcher and she worked as a domestic to support eight children.

Young Marion picked cotton, waited on tables and delivered newspapers. He became an Eagle Scout and earned a degree in chemistry from LeMoyne College in Memphis in 1958.

His middle initial, S., originally stood for nothing, but in the late 1950s he adopted the middle name Shepilov, after Dmitri T. Shepilov, a purged member of the Soviet Communist Party. As a sophomore, Mr. Barry joined the LeMoyne chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. He became chapter president his senior year.

While studying for his master’s degree at Fisk University in Nashville, he organized a campus N.A.A.C.P. chapter. Early in 1960, he helped organize the first lunch counter sit-ins in Nashville. That April, he and other student leaders met with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to establish the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Mr. Barry became its first national chairman.

After a year as a teaching assistant at the University of Kansas, he began studying for a doctorate in chemistry at the University of Tennessee. He abandoned his studies a few credits short and began working full time for S.N.C.C.

In June 1965 he moved to Washington, where reporters occasionally referred to him as a “dashiki-clad militant.” A powerful speaker and street campaigner, he began pressing for home rule for the District of Columbia. He had found fertile political soil, since residents had only recently won the right to vote in presidential elections and had virtually no say in governing themselves.

In 1967, Mr. Barry started a jobs program for poor blacks, winning federal grants worth several million dollars. He won his first election in February 1970, to a citizens’ board created to smooth relations between police officers and black residents. He was later president of the school board and a member of the City Council.

On March 9, 1977, he was shot during a takeover of a Washington office building by members of the Hanafi Muslim sect. The bullet narrowly missed his heart, but Mr. Barry was back at work by the end of the month.

The next year he ran for mayor and defeated the incumbent, Walter E. Washington, who had become the District of Columbia’s first elected mayor four years earlier, and the City Council president, Sterling Tucker, in the Democratic primary, making his election in November a certainty in that overwhelmingly Democratic city.

“Let this day signal our drive toward greatness,” he told a cheering crowd on Jan. 2, 1979, as he was sworn in for the first time by Justice Thurgood Marshall of the Supreme Court.

At first, Washington seemed to undergo a renaissance with Mr. Barry as mayor. Downtown boomed as vacant lots and abandoned buildings gave way to smart new offices, hotels and restaurants. But as the political honeymoon faded, Mr. Barry’s critics complained that conditions in the poorest black neighborhoods were deteriorating even as the mayor used the city government as an employment agency for his followers.

His detractors said he held on to power by cynically telling blacks that the only alternative to him was restoration of a quasi-colonial white power. Indeed, he exploited memories of the decades in which congressional chairmen, typically white Southerners, gave short shrift to the Washington beyond the gleaming edifices of the federal government.

Several people close to Mr. Barry were implicated in scandals. A deputy mayor was sent to prison for embezzling city funds. One of Mr. Barry’s former wives (he was married four times) went to prison for embezzling money from the job-training and antipoverty organization he had founded. When she was released, he found her another city job.

His defenders pointed to Washington’s unique situation as a city with no state to look to for financial aid, no heavy industry to tax and many tax-exempt government buildings. Many people who work in Washington commute from Maryland and Virginia and pay no District of Columbia taxes.

Part of Mr. Barry’s tenure coincided with a nationwide crack cocaine epidemic, and Washington’s poorest neighborhoods suffered as much as any in the country. At its nadir, Washington had both the highest infant mortality rate and the highest homicide rate of any city in the United States. Drugs were peddled openly on many corners, and homeless people slept on heating grates within sight of the White House. The Fire Department could handle only a single two-alarm blaze at a time.

Young black men fared badly year after year. One study found that by 1991, 42 percent of the district’s black men ages 18 to 35 were in prison, on probation or on parole, released on bond or sought by the police.

More and more middle-class people, black and white, fled to the suburbs after despairing of getting a good public education for their children, getting their garbage picked up or getting their streets plowed after snowstorms.

But the mayor seemed not to worry about such complaints, just as he seemed not to care about appearing to be hypocritical. In October 1986, for instance, he announced that he would convene a “D.C. drug summit” of experts to discuss the cocaine epidemic at a time when the mayor himself was rumored to be a user.

“I may not be perfect,” he said a month later, after his election to a third term, “but I am perfect for Washington.”

In January 1987, Mr. Barry went to Los Angeles for the Super Bowl game between the New York Giants and the Denver Broncos at the Rose Bowl. His detractors noted that while he was watching football and partying afterward in sunny Southern California, his constituents were being buried under a knee-deep snowfall that clogged Washington streets.

The mayor’s Super Bowl vacation was interrupted by a visit to a hospital. Mr. Barry said he had suffered a flare-up of his hiatal hernia. An associate said he had overdosed. There would be other medical crises in which he claimed exhaustion or indigestion and people close to him blamed alcohol or drugs.

But the mayor seemed immune to embarrassment. In early 1988, with the District of Columbia’s government slumping under debt and its payroll bloated, he led a delegation of 17 city officials to the Virgin Islands. The stated purpose of the junket was to help the islands’ officials overhaul their personnel system.

In 1989 Mr. Barry was called before a federal grand jury investigating whether a woman had sold drugs to city officials, including the mayor. He acknowledged having had a relationship with her but denied buying drugs.

He was arrested just as he was about to announce that he was running for mayor again. In 1990, after a two-month trial, he was convicted of one misdemeanor count of drug possession and acquitted of another misdemeanor. The jury could not agree on another 12 counts, including three felony charges that he had lied to the grand jury.

The verdict was a near-victory for Mr. Barry. Had he been convicted of a felony, he could not have sought office again. But in November 1990, Mr. Barry suffered the only electoral defeat of his career. As an independent, he finished third in a race for an at-large City Council seat.

After serving his sentence in a minimum-security prison in Virginia, he was easily elected to the City Council again in 1992.

In the 1994 Democratic primary for mayor, he defeated Mayor Sharon Pratt Kelly, who had been unable in her single term to turn the city around, and several other candidates.

“Amazing grace, how sweet it sounds to save a wretch like me!” he exulted on the night of Sept. 13, 1994. In November, he cruised to victory over his Republican opponent.

But the problems that had dogged the city during his first three terms continued into his fourth. The government sagged under the weight of accumulated debt. The payroll remained heavy, even though the city’s population had been dwindling for years: While Mr. Barry was in office, the city lost 115,000 residents, leaving it with just over 520,000 in January 1999, the fewest since 1933. (By 2013, the district’s population had increased to about 646,000, according to the Census Bureau.)

In April 1995 an exasperated Congress created the District of Columbia Financial Control Board to oversee city spending. In August 1997, Congress stripped Mr. Barry of much of his remaining power, turning over nine major operating departments to the board.

Mr. Barry called the move a “rape of democracy.” Though he was now a figurehead, there was widespread speculation that he would try for still another term. But on May 21, 1998, he announced that he would not.

“For all of you who have supported me, I love you so much,” he said that day. “I love this city.” The control board shined a spotlight on Anthony A. Williams, a bow-tied number cruncher who had been credited with helping the city out of its mess as its chief financial officer. He was elected mayor in 1998 and served two terms marked by a more businesslike, if less colorful, approach to governing.

Although the trial on cocaine charges was Mr. Barry’s most serious encounter with the law, it was but one of many run-ins with the authorities. In July 2000 Mr. Barry was accused of shoving a female janitor in a restroom at Baltimore-Washington International Airport. He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and was sentenced to community service.

In March 2002 he announced that he would run for City Council, but he withdrew after the United States Park Police found traces of crack cocaine and marijuana in his car, which was illegally parked, later that month. No charges were filed, and Mr. Barry said he had been framed.

Despite his clashes with the law, he won a City Council seat in 2004. The next year he pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor charges for failing to file income tax returns for the year 2000. He was placed on probation for three years. Yet he continued to defy the Internal Revenue Service, neglecting for the next several years to file returns. He finally settled with the tax agency in 2009, saying that his failure to file had been the result of health problems.

He had no such excuse in 2010, when the City Council stripped him of a committee chairmanship and censured him for steering a consulting contract to a sometime girlfriend (who had once had him arrested for stalking her). Mr. Barry apologized for his “lack of sound judgment” on the contract.

Mr. Barry also showed lack of sound judgment as a motorist. In August 2014, after he was slightly injured in a crash while driving on the wrong side of the street, it was revealed that he had accumulated some $2,800 in fines for moving violations and parking infractions. He finally paid up.

Various theories have been advanced to explain how Mr. Barry survived scandals that made him a laughingstock for television comedians and would have destroyed lesser politicians. Writing in The New Yorker in 1994 about that year’s mayoral campaign, David Remnick observed that Mr. Barry’s flaws actually helped him, especially among impoverished black people who feared that white businessmen and other elitists were conspiring to take back the power that black Washingtonians had gained.

“No one has a more acute feeling for the divides of the city and their political possibilities than Marion Barry,” Mr. Remnick wrote after spending considerable time with the mayor on the campaign trail.

“What Barry grasps intuitively — and what comes as a shock to most whites — is the political potential of conspiracy thinking,” Mr. Remnick wrote. Indeed, years afterward, Mr. Barry blamed a racist conspiracy for his trial and imprisonment on cocaine charges. “They didn’t want me creating all of these opportunities for black folks,” he wrote in his autobiography, published by Simon & Schuster in June.

Co-written by Omar Tyree, “Mayor for Life” indulged in some revisionist history and selective amnesia. As Marc Fisher pointed out in reviewing the book for The Washington Post, Mr. Barry asserted at one point that news media reports of his womanizing “were all unfounded.” Yet a hundred pages later, Mr. Barry conceded that he “got involved with women who sometimes were not good for me.”

In an interview with The New York Times shortly after the book’s release, Mr. Barry denied that his personal troubles and run-ins with the law had hindered the progress he sought for the poorest Washington residents.

“I serve as an inspiration for those who are going through all kinds of things,” Mr. Barry said. “Whatever storm they’re going through, they can learn from me.”

Mr. Barry is survived by his wife, Cora Masters Barry, and his son, Marion Christopher Barry.

Like many successful politicians, Mr. Barry had a sizable ego. “God gave me this kind of gift,” he said to The Washington Post after his victory in the 2004 City Council election. “How good God is.”

What Mr. Barry bequeathed to Washington, and his motives, are likely to be debated for years.

“One reason he was so good at the political game, some of his friends thought, was because so little of it really meant anything to him,” David Halberstam wrote in “The Children” in 1998, about the early days of the civil rights movement. “He was largely free of causes, save his own. His agenda was always primarily about himself.”

But Mr. Fisher, in his review of Mr. Barry’s book, wrote that “no other mayor has come close to his achievement in providing first jobs for poor young black residents.” Nevertheless, Mr. Fisher added, “black poverty remains deeply entrenched in the District, and his administration had little to show for its efforts to curb crime or improve schools.”

Sam Smith, editor of The Progressive Review, who knew Mr. Barry since 1966, had a subtler perspective in the twilight of his public career:

“It’s like going out into a field and seeing an old rusting-out hulk of a car and trying to imagine what it was like when it was brand-new. What people are seeing now is that corroded shell of what Barry was, and if you don’t remember that, it’s very hard to see.”

Correction: November 23, 2014
An earlier version of this obituary misstated the position Anthony A. Williams held before being elected to succeed Mr. Barry as mayor of Washington in 1998. He had been the city’s chief financial officer — not chairman of the District of Columbia Financial Control Board.

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WORLD TELEVISION DAY: NOVEMBER 21, 2014

 

WORLD TELEVISION DAY

Quick Facts

The United Nations’ (UN) World Television Day is globally celebrated on November 21 each year.

Local names

Name Language
World Television Day English
Día Mundial de la Televisión Spanish
עולם יום הטלוויזיה Hebrew
اليوم العالمي للتلفزيون Arabic
세계 텔레비전의 날 Korean
Welttag des Fernsehens German

World Television Day 2014

Friday, November 21, 2014

World Television Day 2015

Saturday, November 21, 2015

The United Nations’ (UN) World Television Day is annually observed in many places around the world on November 21. The day recognizes that television plays a major role in presenting different issue that affect people.

World Television Day helps people remember the beneficial purposes of television.

©iStockphoto.com/PhotoTalk

What do people do?

World Television Day is a day to renew governments’, organizations’ and individuals’ commitments to support the development of television media in providing unbiased information about important issues and events that affect society. News about World Television Day may be shared via print, online and broadcast media. Television and radio bloggers may write comments, editors may write in the editors’ columns, and writers, academics and journalists may write feature articles about the meaning behind this event.

Educational institutions may mark World Television Day on their calendars and educators may use this day as an opportunity to invite guest speakers to discuss media and communication issues relating to television. Discussion topics may include: how television promotes cultural diversity and a common understanding; the links between democracy and television; and the role of television in social, political and economic developments.

Public life

World Television Day is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

The UN acknowledges that television can be used to educate many people about the world, its issues and real stories that happen on the planet. Television is one of the most influential forms of media for communication and information dissemination. It is used to broadcast freedom of expressions and to increase cultural diversity.  The UN realized that television played a major role in presenting global issues affecting people and this needed to be addressed.

On December 17, 1996, UN General Assembly proclaimed November 21 as World Television Day to commemorate the date on which the first World Television Forum was held earlier that year. The UN invited all member states to observe the day by encouraging global exchanges of television programs focusing, among other things, on issues such as peace, security, economic and social development and cultural change enhancements.

Symbols

The UN logo is often associated with marketing and promotional material for this event. It features a projection of a world map (less Antarctica) centered on the North Pole, inscribed in a wreath consisting of crossed conventionalized branches of the olive tree. The olive branches symbolize peace and the world map depicts the area of concern to the UN in achieving its main purpose, peace and security. The projection of the map extends to 60 degrees south latitude, and includes five concentric circles.

World Television Day Observances

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Fri Nov 21 1997 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 21 1998 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 21 1999 World Television Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 21 2000 World Television Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 21 2001 World Television Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 21 2002 World Television Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 21 2003 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 21 2004 World Television Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 21 2005 World Television Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 21 2006 World Television Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 21 2007 World Television Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 21 2008 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 21 2009 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 21 2010 World Television Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 21 2011 World Television Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 21 2012 World Television Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 21 2013 World Television Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 21 2014 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 21 2015 World Television Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 21 2016 World Television Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 21 2017 World Television Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 21 2018 World Television Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 21 2019 World Television Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 21 2020 World Television Day United Nations observance

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SKYWATCH: RACE AGAINST TIME FOR COMET FINDINGS, WATCH ALGOL WINK, AND MORE

LATEST NEWS

Philae Wins Race to Return Comet Findings

With its battery power failing, Philae became the “little lander than could” and managed to return results from all 10 of its science instruments before slipping into hibernation.

Why Is Jupiter’s Great Red Spot . . . Red?

Scientists think they’ve figured out what causes the mysterious ruddy coloring in the giant planet’s enormous oval storm.

Dark Galaxies Discovered in Coma Cluster

A bizarre set of galaxies in the Coma Cluster have lost most of their stars (or star-making material), making them especially rich in dark matter.

OBSERVING HIGHLIGHTS

This Week’s Sky at a Glance – November 21 – 29

High in the northeast, the W pattern of Cassiopeia stands on end as early as 6 p.m. now, and on Tuesday, Mars shines next to a thin crescent Moon in twilight.

When Algol Winks, Will You Wink Back?

The dark ways of Algol, the Demon Star, and what it can teach us about stellar evolution.

COMMUNITY

Kavli Foundation Q&A: The Hunt for Dark Matter

On Thursday, November 20th, three astrophysicists answered questions about preparations for three recently funded dark matter experiments, and the likelihood that one of them will strike gold.

 

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WORLD PHILOSOPHY DAY: NOVEMBER 20, 2014

 

WORLD PHILOSOPHY DAY

Quick Facts

World Philosophy Day is celebrated on the third Thursday of November each year.

Local names

Name Language
World Philosophy Day English
Día Mundial de la Filosofía Spanish
עולם יום הפילוסופיה Hebrew
اليوم العالمي للفلسفة Arabic
세계 철학의 날 Korean
Welttag der Philosophie German

World Philosophy Day 2014 Theme: “Social Transformation and Intercultural Dialogue”

Thursday, November 20, 2014

World Philosophy Day 2015

Thursday, November 19, 2015

World Philosophy Day annually observed on the third Thursday of November to honor philosophical reflections around the world. It is a day for people to share thoughts, openly explore and discuss new ideas and inspire public debate or discussion on society’s challenges.

Philosophers such as Socrates have contributed to modern thinking in society.

©iStockphoto.com/Brigida_Soriano

What do people do?

World Philosophy Day is a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) initiative that draws people around the world to engage in shared reflection on contemporary issues. Various events and activities include:

  • Philosophical dialogues, debates, lectures, and meetings involving renowned philosophers.
  • International conferences on philosophical topics such as the connection between philosophy, education and culture.
  • Exhibitions and philosophy book fairs.
  • Philosophy cafes.

Different organizations, community groups and government agencies in many countries, including (but not exclusive to) Chile, France, Morocco, the Philippines, and Turkey, have participated in actively promoting World Philosophy Day.

Public life

World Philosophy day is a global observance and is not a public holiday.

Background

Philosophy has opened the door for new concepts and innovative ideas, laying the foundations of critical thinking, independence and creativity across cultures for many centuries. UNESCO introduced World Philosophy Day in 2002 to honor philosophical reflections throughout the world by opening spaces and encouraging people to share their philosophical heritage, opening their minds to new ideas, and inspire public debate on society’s challenges.

UNESCO’s Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura gave a public message about World Philosophy Day in 2004 to highlight the day’s meaning and importance. He said that philosophy gave the conceptual grounding to the principles and values that shaped the possibility of world peace – democracy, human rights, justice and equality. Reflection on contemporary society’s unsolved problems and unanswered questions was always at the heart of philosophical analysis and thinking.

World Philosophy Day Observances

 

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Thu Nov 21 2002 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2003 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 18 2004 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 17 2005 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 16 2006 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 15 2007 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2008 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 19 2009 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 18 2010 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 17 2011 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 15 2012 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 21 2013 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2014 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 19 2015 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 17 2016 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 16 2017 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 15 2018 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 21 2019 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 19 2020 World Philosophy Day United Nations observance

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UNIVERSAL CHILDREN’S DAY: NOVEMBER 20, 2014

 

UNIVERSAL CHILDREN’S DAY

Quick Facts

The United Nations’ (UN) Universal Children’s Day is an occasion to promote the welfare of children and an understanding between children all over the world. It is held on November 20 each year

Local names

Name Language
Universal Children’s Day English
Día Universal del Niño Spanish
יום הילד האוניברסלי Hebrew
عيد الطفولة Arabic
어린이날 Korean
Weltkindertag German

Universal Children’s Day 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Universal Children’s Day 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

The United Nations’ (UN) Universal Children’s Day, which was established in 1954, is celebrated on November 20 each year to promote international togetherness and awareness among children worldwide. UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund, promotes and coordinates this special day, which also works towards improving children’s welfare.

Universal Children’s Day promotes the welfare of and understanding between children.

©iStockphoto.com/shironosov

What do people do?

Many schools and other educational institutions make a special effort to inform children of their rights according to the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Teachers stimulate their pupils to think about the differences between themselves and others and explain the idea of “rights”. In countries where the rights of children are generally well-respected, teachers may draw attention to situations in countries where this is not the case.

In some areas UNICEF holds events to draw particular attention to children’s rights. These may be to stimulate interest in the media around the world or to start nationwide campaigns, for instance on the importance of immunizations or breastfeeding.

Many countries, including Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, hold Universal Children’s Day events on November 20 to mark the anniversaries of the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. However, other countries hold events on different dates, such as the fourth Wednesday in October (Australia) and November 14 (India). Universal Children’s Day is not observed in the United States, although a similar observance, National Child’s Day, is held on the first Sunday in June.

Public life

Universal Children’s Day is a global observance and not a public holiday.

Background

On December 14, 1954, the UN General Assembly recommended that all countries should introduce an annual event from 1956 known as Universal Children’s Day to encourage fraternity and understanding between children all over the world and promoting the welfare of children. It was recommended that individual countries should choose an appropriate date for this occasion.

At the time, the UN General Assembly recommended that all countries should establish a Children’s Day on an “appropriate” date. Many of the countries respected this recommendation and the Universal Children’s Day has since been annually observed on November 20. There are however, some countries, such as Australia and India, which still chose various different dates during the year to celebrate this day.

On November 20, 1959, the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and on November 20, 1989, it adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Since 1990, Universal Children’s Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the declaration and the convention on children’s rights.

Symbols

Universal Children’s Day is part of the work carried out by UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund. UNICEF’s logo consists of an image of a mother and child, a globe, olive branches and the word “UNICEF”. All parts of the logo are in UN’s blue color, although it may be presented in white on a blue background.

Universal Children’s Day Observances

 

Weekday Date Year Name Holiday type Where it is observed
Tue Nov 20 1990 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 20 1991 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 20 1992 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 20 1993 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 20 1994 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 20 1995 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 20 1996 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 1997 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 20 1998 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 20 1999 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 20 2000 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 20 2001 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 20 2002 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2003 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 20 2004 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 20 2005 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 20 2006 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 20 2007 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2008 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 20 2009 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sat Nov 20 2010 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 20 2011 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 20 2012 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 20 2013 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Thu Nov 20 2014 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 20 2015 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Sun Nov 20 2016 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Mon Nov 20 2017 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Tue Nov 20 2018 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Wed Nov 20 2019 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance
Fri Nov 20 2020 Universal Children’s Day United Nations observance

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HATEWATCH: SMALL-TOWN MONTANA RESIDENTS ORGANIZE TO OPPOSE PRESENCE OF WHITE NATIONALISTS

Small-Town Montana Residents Organize to Oppose Presence of White Nationalists

By David Neiwert on November 19, 2014 – 3:47 pm

A collection of citizens in the small resort town of Whitefish, Mont., banded together earlier this week to demand that their local town council take action to deal with the effects of the presence of a nationally prominent white-nationalist organization in their midst.

Calling themselves Love Lives Here, the group packed the Whitefish City Council chambers on Monday night to demand the council pass an anti-hate ordinance that would bar such groups from assembling in the city.

The object of their ire was Richard Spencer and his National Policy Institute, a hate group that is one of the leading exemplars of academic racism. Spencer moved his national headquarters to Whitefish from Washington, D.C., several years ago.

Richard Spencer

Spencer’s activities in Whitefish recently surfaced in the public eye due to an article in The Daily Beast describing an encounter between Spencer and former John McCain adviser Randy Scheunemann on the ski lift at Big Mountain, the resort that dominates Whitefish. According to the article, Spencer “berated” Scheunemann for “being a neocon and for believing in this whole democracy BS.”

Over 100 Whitefish residents on Monday night voiced concern that the presence of Spencer and his organization would lead to their town being identified with his brand of hatemongering.

“We are committed to co-creating a caring, open, accepting, and diverse community, free from discrimination, and dedicated to the equal treatment of all citizens,” Ina Albert, one of the Love Lives Here co-founders, said, according to a report from KPAX-TV. “The idea of hate and discrimination has no place in Whitefish, and I hope you can figure out a way to say, ‘we will not accept it in our town.’”

“This isn’t about one individual, it is about a way of thinking that is despicable,” said Brian Muldoon, a Whitefish attorney. “This community I believe is standing up strongly against the kinds of ideas that Richard Spencer and his ilk promotes … and it is time to deconstruct the ideas that are so insidious. It is time to take a very clear stance. An unambiguous one.”

The council was sympathetic and promised to take action. Councilor Richard Hildner, choked with emotion, told the audience that “hate, racism, bigotry are not community values in Whitefish.”

“I promise you I will do everything I possibly can to see that we protect the citizens of Whitefish. I want you to know you have my pledge,” Hildner added, to a round of applause.

Spencer was defiant. “I’ve been coming to Whitefish for more than 10 years now,” he told the Whitefish Pilot. “At no point have I published an opinion on local politics, held meetings with local or state politicians, or engaged in civic activism of any kind.”

“Whitefish is a place where I go to get away from it all. I have no desire to do anything that changes the community that I love, nor has my organization ever considered establishing a permanent facility or residence in Montana.”

However, according to Whitefish residents interviewed by Hatewatch, there is concern that Spencer in fact is planning to construct a large new center for his organization in the town, and part of their action on Monday was aimed at forestalling that possibility. According to the Pilot, he already is a partner in the development of a mixed-use building in the city’s Railway District, not far from Montana’s only Amtrak terminal.

Spencer denied adamantly in a friendly article in the nearby Kalispell newspaper, the Daily Inter Lake, that he was engaged in hatemongering.

“When people call you a hate group, it means they hate you,” he said. “They’re looking at a mirror reflection … They clearly think more about me than I think about them. I don’t harm anyone; I haven’t challenged or provoked them.”

He then went on to explain to the interviewer the virtues of eugenics and a white ethno-state.

Spencer has spoken frequently about creating a “white homeland” in North America, and like his Flathead Valley neighbor Chuck Baldwin, has at times suggested that racist white people retreat to wide-open spaces such as those in Montana, where relatively few minorities reside, to create it.

Last year Spencer spoke at a gathering of academic racists about his hopes for a “peaceful ethnic cleansing” that would clear parts of North America for Caucasians, meanwhile suggesting that the new state welcome white refugees from Europe. Spencer advocated a “sort of white Zionism” that would infuse whites with the dream of such a homeland just as Zionism helped spur the creation of Israel. “It is perfectly feasible for a white state to be established on the North American continent. Action is the easy part,” Spencer opined, adding, “I have a dream.”

The Flathead Valley has had several brushes with right-wing extremists over the years. Love Lives Here was founded in 2010 when a group of neo-Nazis showed Holocaust-denial films at a Kalispell theater.

Several years before that, local residents organized resistance to a campaign of violent harassment of local environmentalists that was being organized in part through a right-wing radio station. The campaign came on the heels of the arrest of a local extremist named David Burgert for his plot to assassinate local police and political leaders.

SOURCE

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