March 23 in freethought history…

erichfrommMarch 23, 1900 – Philosopher and psychologist Erich Fromm (whose books include Escape from Freedom and The Art of Loving) is born in Frankfurt, Germany. He was named Humanist of the Year in 1966 by the American Humanist Association. He died in 1980, aged 79.

March 23, 1931 – Indian revolutionary Bhagat Singh is hacked to death in what is now Lahore, Pakistan, for the assassination of a British policeman. He was 23. Singh had become dedicated to Indian independence, and was attracted to Marxist and anarchist ideas. Disaffected by Muslim-Hindu violence, Singh eventually abandoned religion altogether. While awaiting his sentence, he wrote an essay titled “Why I Am an Atheist,” which was published in English a few months after his death. Despite suggestions to the contrary, Singh did not re-find religion as his execution approached.

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