05/09/2012 01:29 pm ET Updated Jul 09, 2012

This Year, Give Mom a Gift That Matters

Are you giving mom candy for Mother's Day? Seriously? Or are you going with a Hallmark card... again?

Mother's Day should mean something more than cards or candy. It used to mean more; in fact, the holiday was originally a day for peace. Believe it or not, Mother's Day celebrations go back almost 150 years, to the first years after the U.S. Civil War.

Appalled by the devastation she had witnessed, Julia Ward Howe, a celebrated abolitionist and suffragist, called on the nation's women "to promote the alliance of the different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, the great and general interests of peace."

A Mother's Day for Peace

Howe's call for peace still resonates. Click here to see a moving video of women who have heard and responded to her call.

The stakes are high; the threats global. Just one nuclear bomb could devastate a major city. Several dozen used in a regional nuclear war in South Asia would trigger a global famine that could kill a billion people.

We can stop this danger. We can work together to prevent nuclear terrorism and reduce the threat posed by massive nuclear arsenals. We are already moving in the right direction. Through the dedicated work of people around the globe, we have cut the number of nuclear weapons worldwide dramatically in the past 25 years. More countries have given up nuclear weapons and programs than have tried to acquire them.

But we have a long way to go. And we have people in the Congress and the country who want to build more nuclear bombs. To get to a safer world we need everyone's support, particularly women like Julia Ward Howe -- mothers who know what Mother's Day is really about.

Give a Gift for the Future

What do mothers really want? It's not mass-produced cards or flowers that will wilt in a week. What mothers really want is a safer, more peaceful world, a better future for their children.

Please take a minute and see this powerful video from mothers who say just that. You can learn more here about sending a card to your mother showing her that you care -- and that you care about the world her grandchildren will inherit.

This year, stay away from the candy. Give your mother a gift that will last -- a Mother's Day for Peace.