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Upcoming and Recent Events

Thomas Paine Birthday Celebration

 January 29, 2024

Every January 29th the official birthdate of Thomas Paine is recognized and celebrated. The theme for the 2024 event is The Anti-Slavery Efforts of Thomas Paine. The event starts at 4:00 PM PST/7:00 PM EST. Pre-registration for Paine’s birthdate celebration is required. Below is the event registration link:

https://us06web.zoom.us/j/82980534952

Sponsors of the 2024 event are the Secular Coalition for America, Black Nonbelievers, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Center for Inquiry, the Thomas Paine Memorial Association (TPMA), and the Freethought Society.

With this celebration of Thomas Paine coming at the end of January, we are preparing for Black History Month by focusing on his abolitionist work.

Actor Ian Ruskin will present a letter that Paine, posing as a slave, wrote to Thomas Jefferson. Paine wrote using this persona in order to emphasize the urgency in ending the practice of slavery.

The letter reveals Paine’s insight into the immorality of slavery and his frustration about Jefferson doing nothing to stop it. Jefferson was President at the time. Paine thought that Jefferson should do something — anything — to stop the slave trade and took the President to task for continuing to be the owner of human beings.

The 1808 letter (written 7 months before his death) will shock and amaze the January 29th audience. Paine’s words reveal a frustrated and angry abolitionist who had lost patience with those who participated in the debauchery. Paine stood for equality like no other Founding Father and more people should know his legacy.

Event planners Margaret Downey (TPMA president) and Christopher Cameron (TPMA board member) have enlisted the voices of Black leaders, social influencers, educators, politicians, celebrities, and others who are impressed with Paine’s foresight and warnings of civil unrest to end slavery. 

There are a total of four parts to the Slave Letter. Following is a list of some of the scheduled commentators who will appear after each letter segment. More commentators will be added as they are confirmed. 

Ty Barnett
https://www.imdb.com/name/nm1981117/

Congressman Jamaal Bowman (D-NY 16th District)
https://bowman.house.gov/about

Congresswoman Shontel M. Brown (D-OH-11th District)
https://shontelbrown.house.gov/

Victor Harris

Dom Jones
https://www.domjones.org/

Wil Jeudy, MD
https://health.usnews.com/doctors/winer-jeudy-430679

Richard Newman
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_S._Newman

Dr. Anthony Pinn
https://www.anthonypinn.com

Congressman Jamie Raskin (D-MD-8th District)
https://raskin.house.gov/about

Teddy Reeves
https://profiles.si.edu/display/nReevesT1102017

Mandisa Thomas
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mandisa_Thomas

Congresswoman Victoria Spartz (R-IN 5th District)
https://spartz.house.gov/

Musical performances by Cynthia McDonald will open and close the event. McDonald is a social worker, author, public speaker, podcaster, musical artist and freethinker. She is a member of the Godless Gospel. A variety of her music performances can be found at the following link:

A post-event social hour will allow audience participation. Sculptor Zenos Frudakis will join us from his Glenside, Pennsylvania studio to show us his clay statue of Thomas Paine. Thomas Paine expert Gary Berton, President for the Thomas Paine National Historical Association, will be in attendance to answer questions. 

Mayday for Humanity

On Thursday, May 6, 2021, please join the Freethought Society, Recovering From Religion, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, the Secular Student Alliance and the Secular Coalition for America as we celebrate The National Day of Reason by hosting a Zoom entertainment extravaganza entitled “Mayday for Humanity.” The event will begin at 4:00 PM PST/7:00 PM EST.

Comedians Leighann Lord and Ian Harris will co-host this 3-hour event. They will usher in an array of comedians, poets, and musical performers. All funds donated during the event will benefit homeless shelters and food banks selected by the co-sponsors. Beneficiary organizations operate in a nondiscriminatory and secular manner.

This entertaining and enlightening program will interweave messages from co-sponsors, celebrity supporters, and people who are conducting grassroots community service projects during the 2021 Secular Week of Action (April 30-May 9).

An online auction will also take place with items donated by renowned-sculptor Zenos Frudakis, award-winning science writer Ann Druyan, illusionist Curt Anderson, the Humanists Society of Santa Barbara and many others.

Register for the Zoom event at:
bit.ly/Join4Humanity

Pre-event donations can be made at:
bit.ly/MAYDAY4HUMANITY

You can also donate via test! Just text the code:
MAYDAY4HUMANITY to 44-321

Below is the list of performers and guest appearances:

  • Ty Barnett
  • Sandra Booker
  • Baba Brinkman
  • John Davidson
  • Ann Druyan
  • John Fugelsang
  • Victor Harris
  • Jon Huertas
  • Keith Lowell Jensen
  • John de Lancie
  • Hemant Mehta
  • Shelley Segal
  • Gary Stockdale
  • Penn & Teller
  • Jill Sobule
  • Julia Sweeney
  • Voices of Reason

March - April 2018 eZine

March – April 2018 eZine Newsletter

Click here to see the March/April 2018 Freethought Society (FS) ezine newsletter.

In this newsletter:

  • Celebrating the Freethought Society’s 25th Year by Margaret Downey
  • Celebrating Black History Month at Cheyney University by Freethought Society Board and Editorial Team
  • Photos of the Cheyney University Tabling Project
  • A Science-Themed Trip of a Lifetime by Mike Judge 
  • 2018 Secular Coalition for America Lobby Day Flyer
  • Freethought Society President Scheduled to Portray Eva  Amelia Parker Ingersoll and Center for Inquiry Flyer
  • Freethought Society’s 2018 Two-Month Activities Calendar
  • Donation and Information Page

We hope that you will remain or become an active supporter of the great work FS is doing. Please donate to the general fund or select a project you want to help sponsor. All donations to FS are tax-deductible!

If the ezine inspires you to become more actively involved with FS, please provide us with your contact information, including your phone number and mailing address.

Special events are being planned in your area so don’t miss an opportunity to participate further. All personal information is confidential and will not be shared with other organizations.

We want supporters to stay informed at all times. To keep updated about events, meetings and issues, please sign up to participate in the FS Discussion List.

Check for upcoming events at the FS Meet Up page.

Like FS on Facebook!

Follow FS on Twitter.

 

The Freethought Society News Editorial Staff

March - April 2017 Freethought Society ezine

Click here to see the March/April 2017 Freethought Society (FS) ezine.

 In the ezine you will find the following articles:

  • The Historic 2017 Women’s March by Margaret Downey, Patti Butcheck, Catherine Hillery, Larry Hothem and Lisa Pedersen

    Women March

    Women’s March

  • 2017 Women’s March Sign Collage
  • Anti-Superstition Friday-the-Thirteenth Kicks Off 2017 LogiCal-LA Conference
  • Anti-Superstition Friday-the-Thirteenth Bash Photos
  • 2017 LogiCal-LA Skeptics Conference Photos
  • The Freethought Society’s 2017 Two-Month Activities Calendar
  • Freethought Society Merchandise Page
  • Donation and Information Page

 We hope that you will remain or become an active supporter of the great work FS is doing. Please donate to the general fund or select a project you want to help sponsor. All donations to FS are tax-deductible!

If the ezine inspires you to become more actively involved with FS, please provide us with your contact information, including your phone number and mailing address.

Special events are being planned in your area so don’t miss an opportunity to participate further. All personal information is confidential and will not be shared with other organizations.

We want supporters to stay informed at all times. To keep updated about events, meetings and issues, please sign up to participate in the FS Discussion List.

The Freethought Society News Editorial Staff

Sole Searching

Want to help? Please visit our Helping Hands page to learn more about how the Freethought Society continues to give back to our community, and how you can make a difference!

Sole Searching

The Freethought Society (FS) is pleased to continue another project to benefit the homeless community. Donate your gently worn shoes at an FS event or at a monthly meeting. All donations will be acknowledged with a “thank you” and receipt that can be used for tax deduction purposes.

Large boxes filled with shoes will be delivered to a homeless shelter in Pennsylvania. Please note that shoes with high heels are not appropriate for donation.

The more sturdy the shoe, the better! Boots, work and sport shoes are best. Please do not donate over-used and/or dirty shoes.

Thanks in advance for looking through your closet and locating shoes that you no longer enjoy wearing. Consider yourself sole-searching. There is no such thing as an out-of-style shoe in the homeless community. All flat-style shoes can be of use and will be greatly appreciated.

Please “step up” to participate and imagine what it is like to “walk in the shoes” of a homeless person.

Sole Searching

Jump into the Jean Pool

The Freethought Society (FS) is proud to continue the “Jeans Only Clothing Drive.” Donate your gently worn jeans at an FS event or monthly meeting. Jeans are too heavy to ship, so an inperson donation is necessary. All donors will receive a receipt for tax purposes. When FS fills a large box with donated jeans, the box will be delivered to a homeless shelter in Pennsylvania. This type of “Jean Therapy” can benefit many people who are in need of sturdy clothing. FS seeks all sizes, including jeans for children, young adults and seniors. Please do not donate stained, ripped or torn jeans. Ask your family, friends and neighbors to donate to this effort.

Watch Meetup, the FS Discussion GroupFacebook and the quarterly newsletter for announcements about the next opportunity to donate. Local businesses can be asked to participate in this collection. Let’s find merchants who are willing to help. Please contact FS to request a poster that can be used to gather jeans from the public-at-large.

Jump Into the Jean Pool

Partnering to Help the Homeless

The Freethought Society’s (FS) Helping Hands Committee has partnered with a local homeless shelter to provide needed items. Safe Harbor is a homeless shelter located in Chester County, Pennsylvania.

Safe Harbor is located at 20 North Matlack Street in West Chester, Pennsylvania. The facility has been open for over twenty years. During frequent visits to the facility, no religious literature or symbols are displayed. Safe Harbor is known specifically as a secular non-discriminatory 501(c)3 non-profit organization. There is no religious testing for services, the facility does not promote, endorse or support any particular religious belief. All visitors are welcome.

There are many jobs to do at Safe Harbor. Volunteers are needed for laundry duty, health advocacy (scheduling doctor appointments, providing transportation to doctors and hospitals, etc.), cleaning, and maintenance of the facility. Please visit www.safeharborofgwc.org to learn more about volunteer opportunities.

Twice a year (in celebration of Spring and/or Winter), FS would like to provide some of the following items needed at Safe Harbor:

Cleaning Supplies

  • Windex, bleach, toilet bowl cleaner, Clorox wipes, all-purpose spray cleaner, dish detergent, Brillo pads, Magic Erasers, cleaning rags

Women’s Needs

  • Panties, sports bras, socks, slippers, feminine hygiene products, pajama pants

Personal Care Items

  • Deodorant, razors, shaving cream, Tylenol/Advil, cold medicine, cough drops/lozenges

Food Items

  • Individual snack packs, coffee, creamer, cups, sugar/sugar substitute packets, powdered juice mix, iced tea mix

Men’s Needs

  • Boxers, undershirts, socks, hooded sweatshirts, sweat pants, pajama pants

Miscellaneous

  • Bus tokens, paper towels and napkins, tote bags, duffle bags, backpacks, hats, scarves, gloves

Donations can be given at any FS meeting. The items will be delivered to Safe Harbor. A tax-deduction receipt will be provided to donors requesting one.

Helping the Homeless