Some years ago, before SOCWORK was possible, I had the privilege of starting a community multi-service centre in one of Toronto’s most multi-cultural communities, Flemingdon Park. Our collaborator and community partner was a local office of the Canadian Red Cross. In recognition of the diversity, information on various drives included reference to the ‘International Red Cross, Red Crescent Societies’.
Crosses, crusades and ‘our way of life’ have many meanings. One of the core skills of social work is gaining understanding what others mean when they use the same words that we do and how our use of these words affects them.
ASM [Posted to SOCWORK]
—–Original Message—– From: firstname.lastname@example.org Behalf Of Ogden Rogers, Ph.D. Sent: Wednesday, October 10, 2001 10:50 AM Subject: socwork: Re: Miss Jane Addams and the Iconography of SW’s as Pacifists …
Although it’s stated intentions are humanitarian, and neutral in times of armed conflict, a number of historical essayists have pointed out how the Red Cross movement has often been coopted by national governments (or popular will) as a way to be manifest expressions of patriotism… a patriotism that can be supportive of militarism (a word I use with a negative conotation for my present purposes only). The national Red Cross societies have always played a supportive role with their respective militaries….
Ogden Rogers University of Wisconsin-River Falls