Back to listAug 24, 2006

Day of Dialogue on Combatting Violence in Los Angeles, California

Lisa Hollis
Dialogue between a Buddhist and a Sikh at the SGI-USA Los Angeles Friendship Center

The SGI-USA Los Angeles Friendship Center in Los Angeles, California, USA, was host to a Days of Dialogue symposium titled "Confronting Violent Crimes: Our Communities' Continuing Challenge" on August 24, 2006.

Over 150 people, including Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, Los Angeles Police Chief William Bratton, leaders of various religious communities, educators, community activists and children, took part. Participants were divided into small groups, enabling everyone to be able to voice an opinion on violence in the community.

Days of Dialogue is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that facilitates dialogues on themes of concern to Los Angeles citizens, from homelessness to interfaith relations and emergency health services. It was initiated in 1995 by Mark Ridley-Thomas, a local city council member concerned about deep divisions within the community.

At the August 24 event, the SGI-USA "Victory Over Violence" and "Building a Culture of Peace for the Children of the World" exhibitions were on display. Mr. Ridley-Thomas declared August 24 "Daisaku Ikeda Peace Builder Day" in honor of the SGI president and his efforts to promote dialogue for the sake of peace.

[Adapted from an article in the December 1, 2006 issue of the World Tribune, SGI-USA]