April 23 in freethought history…

williamlewismooreApril 23, 1963 – Civil rights activist William Lewis Moore is murdered near Attalla, Alabama, while on a solo protest march, in which he intended to walk from Chattanooga, Tennessee to Jackson, Mississippi, to deliver a letter to Mississippi Governor Ross Barnett. The letter said, in part, “the white man cannot be truly free himself until all men have their rights.” Although the gun’s ownership was traced, no charges were ever filed. Moore’s death inspired at least three protest songs. In 2008, on the 45th anniversary of Moore’s death, American Atheists President Ellen Johnson and atheist activist Ken Loukinen set out to complete Moore’s march. When they arrived at their destination some days later, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour declined to see them.

 April 23, 2015 – The coalition Openly Secular observes the first annual Openly Secular Day. The mission of Openly Secular is “to eliminate discrimination and increase acceptance by getting secular people – including atheists, freethinkers, agnostics, humanists and nonreligious people – to be open about their beliefs.” Openly Secular Day is intended as an opportunity for secularists to “out” themselves to friends and family.

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