Freethought Almanac

Lighting a candle in toxic air.
June 25, 2014
June 25: Ricky Gervais (1961)

It was on this date, June 25, 1961, that English comedian, writer and actor Ricky Gervais was born Ricky Dene Gervais in Whitley, Berkshire, England. He attended University College, London, to study biology but changed to philosophy and earned an upper second-class honours degree in the subject. Gervais achieved mainstream fame with his television series […]

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June 19, 2014
June 19: Torcaso v. Watkins (1961): No Religious Test for Public Office

It was on this date, June 19, 1961, that the U.S. Supreme Court reminded the State of Maryland, and the rest of the nation, that the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution applies equally to the states in its Torcaso v. Watkins decision (367 U.S. 488 (1961); 81 S.Ct. 1680, 6 L.Ed.2d 982). Maryland is […]

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June 19, 2014
June 19: Salman Rushdie (1947)

It was on this date, June 19, 1947, that novelist Salman Rushdie was born Ahmed Salman Rushdie in Bombay, India. Rushdie was born into a Muslim family of Kashmiri descent and the family name was chosen by Salman’s father as a tribute to Islamic scholar Averroes or Ibn Rushd. He was educated in Mumbai and […]

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June 14, 2014
June 14: Che Guevara (1928)

It was on this date, June 14, 1928, that Argentine-born Marxist revolutionist, physician and military leader Che Guevara was born Ernesto Guevara (Lynch) in Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina. He grew up in a family which already had leftist leanings, but which also valued education: Guevara’s reading list not only included Karl Marx but William Faulkner, […]

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June 14, 2014
June 14: Pledges and Loyalty Oaths

I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

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June 10, 2014
June 10: Treaty with Tripoli (1797): Is America a Christian Nation?

"The government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion"

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June 7, 2014
June 7: Muhammad

"It was not the religion of Islam that was disseminated by the sword, but political sovereignty."

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June 6, 2014
June 6: Paul Giamatti (1967)

It was on this date, June 6, 1967 that American actor Paul Giamatti was born Paul Edward Valentine Giamatti in New Haven, Connecticut. The youngest of three children, Giamatti was the son of a Yale University professor who became president of the university and an English teacher mother. Giamatti attended Yale, was elected to the […]

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June 4, 2014
June 4: Susan Jacoby (1945)

It was on this date, June 4, 1945, that American writer and independent scholar Susan Jacoby was born. A journalist for the Washington Post and other publications for over 25 years, and author of the Post’s weekly column, “The Spirited Atheist,” Jacoby has authored the 1984 Pulitzer Prize finalist Wild Justice: The Evolution of Revenge, […]

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June 1, 2014
June 1: Morgan Freeman (1937)

It was on this date, June 1, 1937, that American actor, film director, and narrator Morgan Freeman was born. Freeman has earned Academy Award nominations for his performances in Driving Miss Daisy (1989), The Shawshank Redemption (1994) and Invictus (2009), as well as winning a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for the 2004 fight film Million […]

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Ronald Bruce Meyer

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