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For 39 years, the United Nations has celebrated the International Day of Peace on September 21 by observing a 24-hour cease-fire. This is a time when soldiers lay down their weapons, and humanity has a chance to reflect on the meaning of peace. 

This year, the world is facing an enemy we could not have imagined––COVID-19. In March of this year, the United Nations Secretary, General António Guterres, ordered all parties to lay down their weapons against each other to unite against this global pandemic. The United Nations encourages people to consider this day an opportunity to set aside our differences and “share thoughts on how to weather this storm, heal our planet, and change it for the better.”

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Every year, International Day of Peace is themed to help guide conversations; this year, in 2020, the theme is “Shaping Peace Together.” The goal of this theme is to redefine what our world should look like––free of discrimination and hatred, and full of compassion and kindness. 

I welcome everyone to take this day to heart, whether that’s with a simple act of kindness (such as buying the person behind you a cup of coffee), or reflecting on the world you want to live in and how you may take steps to make it reality. 

The world can always use a little more kindness, and with this pandemic, along with everything else shaping our future right now, kindness and compassion should never be left out of the conversation. 

Hi, I’m Zoe! I am a sophomore at DU studying English and I’m from Colorado Springs, CO. I love reading and writing, listening to music and attending concerts, and hanging out with my family!
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