Peace and Legal Reform
James Kimmel, Jr. is a leader in peacemaking and legal system reform. Here’s how he is making an impact:
Legal Ceasefire Day
Lawyers in our society occupy a special role as peacemakers. But lawyers also often instigate conflicts — and sometimes even provide legal cover to those who would engage in torture and wage war.
Mahatma Gandhi observed that “the true function of a lawyer [is] to unite parties riven asunder.” Inspired by Gandhi, Attorney Kimmel started Legal Ceasefire Day as an opportunity for lawyers, judges, bar associations, legal organizations, courts, law students, law schools, and others around the world to observe a voluntary cessation of legal hostilities and devote their efforts to resolving conflicts, uniting adversaries, and restoring peace in commemoration of the United Nations International Day of Peace observed on September 21 of each year as a day of global ceasefire and cessation of hostilities among all peoples.
For more information about Legal Ceasefire Day and how you can participate, visit www.legalceasefireday.org.
Peace Day Philly
Peacemaking is personal, local and global — mindfulness and action in one area affects another area.
Acting upon this idea, Attorney Kimmel is a member of the Organizing Committee of Peace Day Philly. Supported by the Mayor of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Police Department, and other governmental, non-governmental and faith-based organizations, Peace Day Philly is a grassroots initiative that encourages active participation across the Philadelphia region in the United Nations International Day of Peace, a global day of ceasefire and non-violence observed worldwide on September 21.
For more information about Peace Day Philly and What You Can Do, visit www.peacedayphilly.org.
Legal System Reform
The legal system in the United States has become, in many ways, a secular religion devoted to the worship of justice in the form of revenge. (See Law and Spirituality to learn more.) The legal system is also often engaged in exacerbating rather than lessening the effects of justice addiction. (See Law and Psychology to learn more.)
Inspired by Martin Luther’s act of nailing his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of Wittenberg Church to redress the abuses of the early Church, Attorney Kimmel has set forth in his book Suing for Peace, a “Nine-Five Theses For Our Time — Nailed to the Courthouse Door.” In this book, he calls for a Legal Reformation to redress the abuses of the present legal system. (See Suing for Peace for more.)
Attorney Kimmel is also the founder of the Nonjustice Foundation, which provides an online version of The Nonjustice System free to all who have been wronged and seek to be relieved of the craving to seek justice in the form of revenge. For more information, visit www.nonjustice.org.