The Global Initiative for Peace recently held its inaugural luncheon, celebrating A Season for Peace, at The Taglyan Arts & Cultural Complex, located near the famous Walk-of-Fame in Hollywood, California.
The Global Initiative for Peace, a non-profit organization dedicated to conflict resolution through education and non-violence, mirrors the ideologies of the late Martin Luther King, Jr. whose principals galvanized the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960‚Äôs. With the Centers for Disease Control classifying violence as an epidemic The Global Initiative for Peace is creating alternative ways through education, The Arts, religious leadership and interaction to combat this deadly disease.
‚ÄúNever before has a more timely clarion call gone forth to establish a ‚Äėa season of peace‚Äô than at this moment and what city could be more appropriate than our own city of angels, from its hearts of Hollywood, truly a microcosm of the world, to launch this newly created non-profit, The Global Initiative for Peace, dedicated to the demand for peace through cross cultural endeavors,‚ÄĚ states The Honorable Diane E. Watson, PhD, retired US Congresswoman from the 33rd district who will serve as Chair Emeritus of A Global Initiative for Peace.
The words, "I Have a Dream," spoken by the late Martin Luther King, Jr., echoed through the annals of history and were once again brought to life through a chorus of Los Angeles school children at the celebration of Dr. King‚Äôs life and legacy.
‚ÄúI Have a Dream‚ÄĚ spoken forty-seven years ago on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC by an unknown Negro Preacher, amassed a movement and gave a coalition strength to face the dark hours of the Civil Rights Movement.
Today, ‚ÄúI, too, Have a Dream,‚ÄĚ resonates from the sons of slaves and the daughters of slave owners, the children of a free people, who do not face segregation, the voices heard across our great land, the land that the signatory‚Äôs of the Civil Rights Movement gave their lives in hope of seeing this day. This day when the children of all races and religions gather to celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., and to reflect on his life and his words that moved a people, a generation, the touched hearts, that burned past skin color, past boundaries, that sealed the cause and the hope that the future would be one without barriers.
\Master of Ceremonies, News Anchor, Larry Carroll presided over the afternoon‚Äôs festivities. The event was attended by The Honorable Diane E. Watson, PhD, retired US Congresswoman from the 33rd district, Los Angeles City Council, 4th district, Tom Labonge, Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph, International harpist Mariea Antoinette, Cultural Arts Coordinator and International acclaimed Opera Soprano, Brenda Jackson and renowned classical pianist Marvin Christopher Brown-King.
As the event was dedicated to the future, the talent of the future, The Johnnie L. Cochran Middle School Fife and Drum Corps opened the program, The Arshad Dickranian School Chorale led the singing of the National Anthem and Armine Sanisyan, performed a traditional Armenian dance.
The program introduction continued with traditional Native America duo ‚ÄúOm Shanti‚ÄĚ Alana Pulskamp and Calvin Miller and the Asian Family Federation ‚ÄúDream Girls‚ÄĚ performed a traditional dance. The talented Watts, California based hip-hop group, Statik Express, completed the program with an explosive performance of the National Anthem.
The attendees experienced traditional Mediterranean cuisine from the Southern European regions of Greece and Armenia including stuffed grape leaves, stuffed fried eggplant served with cranberries, kabobs of veal and beef, tossed green salad topped with honey glazed walnut, Caesar Salad, hummus with a variety of traditional flat breads and pitas.
For dessert each table was dressed with a Specialty Cake, larger than a traditional Entremets although of the same combinations, decorated with Gla√ßage au chocolate and strawberries, powdered chocolate with fondant decorations, honey glazed with molded chocolate, each as different and delicious as the next.
A Season for Peace was a huge success, even as the three honorees Congresswoman Karen Bass, California Secretary of State Debra Bowen and California Attorney General Kamala Harris were unable to attend due to unforeseen challenges in health and duty.
For more information: www.aglobalinitiativeforpeace.weebly.com
For more information on Statik Express: www.myspace.com/statik5live
All images by Janet Walker courtesy of Pulse Point Productions, Inc., www.pulsepointproductionsinc.com