Celebrating World Hello Day

Michael Angee, Sports Editor

A warm smile or a simple “hello” can change someone’s day for the better. World Hello Day recognizes and celebrates communication in a light-hearted manner.

World Hello Day, celebrated on Nov. 21, encourages people to consider the importance of personal communication. From a simple greeting to learning about those around you, personal connection is a doorway to resolving conflict conflicts in a verbal, mature way.

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“When you have just violent exchange, it doesn’t get much done. But discussing, connecting with others, talking to people, that is able to not only get both ideas out there, it’s able to get to a better consensus,” Miami Palmetto Senior High School senior and President of Model United Nations Jason Salguero said. “You work with others, you hear others’ viewpoints, have another perspective on your own viewpoints. It’s not just my ideas, it’s now my ideas and his ideas.” 

People are encouraged to celebrate World Hello Day to work towards harmony and peace. Creating an environment in which people are free to communicate breeds healthy relationships in communities and the greater societies in which people reside. 

“We’re social creatures by nature and talking to others, connecting to others, is just a more productive way of solving problems,” Salguero said. 

The holiday is secular and celebrated in almost 180 countries. Started in 1973 in reaction to the Yom Kippur War — an armed conflict between Israel and the coalition of Arab States, most notably Egypt and Syria — the holiday was created by Arizona State University graduate Brian McCormack and Harvard graduate Michael McCormack as a means to communicate to world leaders that personal connections are the best way to preserve peace. The two brothers bought postage and sent letters to as many world leaders as they could. Within 12 months they were able to garner support from 15 countries and in the next 42 years, they gained the support of one hundred and sixty-five others. 

Saying “hello” to at least 10 people a day is the main way to celebrate the holiday, and although it seems minuscule, it goes a long way. Encouraging any form of personal communication is the primary message behind the holiday.

“The world could change if people listened to one another as then decisions would consider everyone, not just the decision-makers or officials,” Palmetto junior and secretary of Model United Nations Ellen Li said.

As throughout the rest of the world, residents of Miami can celebrate the holiday by saying hello to ten people they may not usually. Many argue that hatred stems from ignorance; thus, making an effort to better understand others results in more knowledge and collaboration. 

“People are not just born with an ingrained prejudice against certain people, religions or culture. It is taught by peers or parents, and children under the influence aren’t exposed to other opinions that paint the targeted in a more just light,” Li said. “When ignorance is combated with ideas of equality, the hate and prejudice subside.” 

From world leaders to regular people, this holiday has the potential to solve conflicts before they even begin. 

“Personal connections promote cooperation and foster a sense of unity, helping us all in the end,” Li said.