Upcoming and Recent Events

Larry Robin on Scott Nearing: Making of a Radical 9-29-14

The Freethought Society is pleased to host as its next speaker Larry Robin, the former president of the oldest independent bookstore in Philadelphia until it closed in December 2012. Robin’s presentation, Scott Nearing: The Making of a Radical, will take place on Monday, September 29, 2014 at the Ludington Library (5 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania). The event starts at 7:00 PM. It is a free and open to the public event.

LarryRobinWhile very few people have heard of Scott Nearing, Robin considers his legacy an important topic for all freethinkers and the public at large.

“I met Scott Nearing in 1961 when I was 18 and he was 78. I knew him for 22 years until he died on August 24, 1983, at the age of 100 years plus 18 days,” says Robin.

Robin went on to say, “Nearing is right after Thomas Paine in my list of heroes. With doctorates in Economics and Sociology, Nearing was fired from the University of Pennsylvania after writing the first book on child labor in the United States. That was in 1914. Nearing was arrested for sedition when he wrote a pamphlet against the draft for the First World War in 1917.

Nearing, according to Robin, “…was a radical economist, educator, writer, political activist, sociologist, socialist, pacifist, homesteader, organic gardener, vegetarian, and seeker of the truth.”

scottNearingThe author of hundreds of books and articles on economics and politics, Nearing and his wife Helen wrote Living the Good Life, about self-sufficient homesteading. It became the handbook for America’s “Back to the Land” and “Simple Living” movements.

Robin is the co-founder of Moonstone Incorporated and the director of the Moonstone Arts Center. He has served on the boards of the Pennsylvania Center for the Book, the Read Aloud Coalition of Philadelphia and The American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression. Robin has served on the literature panel of the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts and is a member of the advisory boards of The Mayor’s Commission on Literacy, and the Philadelphia Ink program of the Pennsylvania Humanities Council’s Year of the Pennsylvania Writer and Art Sanctuary. For 18 years, Robin created and directed The Celebration of Black Writing. He also directed The Paul Robeson Festival for eight years. For 18 years, Robin has been credited for Poetry Ink and various other Moonstone programs. He currently produces poetry programs and, since 2009, The Hidden History Project. The Living History Project is a citywide festival celebrating the life and work of social activists, such as John Brown, Frances Harper, Martin Delany, Ida B. Wells, and Charlotte Forten.

For more information, contact:
Margaret Downey
Freethought Society President
Phone: 610.793.2737
Email: Margaret@FtSociety.org

Connect with the Freethought Society on Facebook, Meetup and Yahoo Discussions

RR2012 (111 of 179) (1)Our Meetup and the FS discussion forums are for our supporters to discuss any and all issues that interest them. They include event announcements which keep our members and friends updated and informed about FS events and news as well as discussions.

The conversation/discussion topics differ between the Yahoo and Facebook groups. Sign up for both and don’t miss a thing!

Don’t skip our MEETUP group, which has announcements from the Freethought Society AND announcements from other Philadelphia region (PA, DE, NJ) affiliated groups!

To sign up for discussions and announcements:  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FS-Discussion/

The Freethought Society on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Freethought-Society/147128532024347

The FtS meetup: http://www.meetup.com/Freethought-Society-Meetup/

You can also always email us at info@ftsociety.org

Help celebrate Margaret Downey's 63rd birthday!

Margaret-portrait-2011-1_ppIt’s hard to believe, but on August 16, 2013, Freethought Society (FS) founder and president Margaret Downey will be turning 63!

We, the officers of FS, can think of no better way to honor Margaret on her birthday than by helping to provide much-needed funds to keep FS going strong. We are asking you, our wonderful supporters, to contribute towards this birthday gift from our community. Any amount, large or small, will be very much appreciated. If each person reading this donated just $2, together we would reach our goal of collecting $6,300.

Improving the financial condition of FS will be a wonderful gift for a person who has done so much to promote freethought! Remember, your donation to FS is tax-deductible (EIN #23-2738574).

You can donate here:  https://www.ftsociety.org/donate/

Why are we so proud of Margaret? She has been an activist in promoting equal rights for all, and especially the separation of religion and government, for almost 30 years. She has been a plaintiff in two legal cases: Margaret Downey-Schottmiller v. The Chester County Council of the Boy Scouts of America and Freethought Society of Greater Philadelphia v. Chester County. Despite receiving hate mail, a campaign that tried to force her to leave town, and death threats for her outspokenness, Margaret has tirelessly worked to advance the ideals of freethought. She has established national committees such as The Anti-Discrimination Support Network, The Thomas Paine Memorial Committee, Helping Hands, The Tree of Knowledge, and so much more.

Margaret is also a good-will ambassador within the nontheist community, sharing ideas and projects, and serving on the boards (past and present) of the American Humanist Association, the Robert Green Ingersoll Birthplace Museum, and the Freedom From Religion Foundation. She has spoken at many conferences and has worked on projects with the Center for Inquiry, The James Randi Educational Foundation, and many other skeptic, atheist, humanist and freethought groups. She is the editor of and frequent contributor to the FS newsletter, The Freethought Society News, and she is a contributing author in the books Parenting Beyond Belief and 50 Voices of Disbelief.

Join with us to show Margaret how much we all appreciate her efforts. Your donation will enable FS to continue her presidential work as an advocate on our behalf, including media appearances, educational presentations and many other duties.

Please help us meet or exceed our goal!   Thank you very much for your support.

Freethought Society Officers:
Carol Everhart Roper, Vice-President
Glen Loev, Secretary
Dan Hoffman, Treasurer


Affecting Public Policy and Protecting Our Secular Democracy- Toni Van Pelt 5/21/13

Please join us at 7:00 PM on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 for  a presentation entitled “Affecting Public Policy and Protecting Our Secular Democracy: How it Works and How You Can Influence the Process” by Toni Van Pelt. She is the Public Policy Director for the Institute for Science and Human Values.

Scientific thinking is being challenged in the United States culture today as never before. Continue reading: Affecting Public Policy and Protecting Our Secular Democracy- Toni Van Pelt, May 21, 2013