Friday, November 10, 2006

White Poppies

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I learned about the White Poppy campaign a few years ago from a young woman at the Cape Breton University. She was tabling. She sold me a poppy to raise money for a women's centre. If anybody knows the website for the CBU women's center, please leave a comment below.

Here's what Wikipedia says about White Poppies:

The White Poppy is used as a symbol of peace, worn as an alternative to the red poppy for Remembrance Day. It is worn to remember all victims of war.

In 1926, a few years after the introduction of the red poppy in the UK, the idea of pacifists making their own poppies was put forward by a member of the No More War Movement (and that the black centre of the British Legion's red poppies should be imprinted with "No More War"). Nothing seems to have come of this, until in 1933 the Women's Co-operative Guild introduced the White Poppy; their intention was to remember the war dead (as with the red poppy), but with the added meaning of a hope for the end of all wars.

The White Poppy was at first produced by the Co-operative Wholesale Society, because the British Legion refused to be associated with its manufacture. In 1934 the recently-formed Peace Pledge Union joined the CWS in production of the poppies, and eventually took over production and distribution altogether. The annual White Poppy appeal is still run by the PPU.


Anonymous said...

The Peace Pledge Union spent 1940 sharing platforms with fascists and anti-semites. It's leaders Morris, Ben Greene and the Marquis of Tavistock were out and out jew haters. Objectively pacifists always end up on the side of the bullies and murderers. Read some history.

Timothy said...

I must emphasize that the White Poppy as a pacifist campaign was generated by women. In Canada, progressive young women and Women's Centres continue the campaign as a fundraiser for women. Especially for women who are victims of war.

Although the White Poppy might have been appropriated by a few men, it must not be considered their property exclusively.