2019-07-01 - 2019-07-31


  • Start: 2019-07-01
  • End: 2019-07-31
  • Event Category Humanist Action Kit

International Day of Friendship

Humanism is about people helping people. What better way to connect with people than to meet with them in caring communities.
The United Nations International Day of Friendship recognizes the relevance and importance of friendship as a noble and valuable sentiment in the lives of human beings around the world. It was proclaimed in 2011 by the UN General Assembly with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, cultures, and individuals can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities.

Useful Dates for July

July 4 Independence Day

Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States on July 4, 1776.  The Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies were no longer subject (and subordinate) to the monarch of Britian and were now united, free, and independent states.  The Congress had voted to declare independence two days earlier, on July 2, but it was not declared until July 4.  Wikipedia

July 4 Indivisble Day
Governor Jesse Ventura declared Independence Day to be Indivisble Day in the state of Minneasota.  The holiday is in recognition of the necessity for the seperation of church and state.  His proclamation is as follows:

Indivisible Day Proclamation

Whereas:  The unique features of this nation at its foundation was its establishment of a secular Constitution that spearated government from religion–something never done before; and

Whereas:  Our secular constitution has enabled people of all world views to coexist in harmony, undivided by sectarian strife; and

Whereas:  President James Madison made clear the importance of maintaining this harmony when he said, “The purpose of spearation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the endless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe in blood for centuries”; and

Whereas:  The diversity of our people requires mutual respect and equal protection for all our citizens, including minority groups, if we are to remain “One nation, indivisble”; and

Whereas:  It is the unfettered diversity of ideas and world views that have made our nation the strongest and most productive in the world; and

Whereas:  Eternal vigilance must be maintained to guard against those who seek to strife ideas, establish a narrow orthodoxy, and divide our nation along arbitrary lines of race, ethnicity, and religious belief or non-belief.

Now Therefore, I, Jesse Ventura, Governor of Minnesota, do hereby proclaim that Thursday July 4, 2002 shall be observed as: Indivisible Day In the State of Minnesota

July 11 World Population Day
World Population day is an annual event, observed on July 11 every year, which seeks to raise awareness of global population issues.  The event was established by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Porgramme in 1989.  It was inspired by the public interest in Five Billion Day on July 11, 1987, the approximate date on which the world’s population reached five billion people.  World Population Day aims to increase people’s awareness on various population issues such as the importance of family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health and human rights.  Wikipedia
July 12-14 SSA Conference
Secular Student Alliance annual conference is at the University of Southern California, July 12-14, 2019 in Los Angeles.  The conference theme is: Better Together, creating meaningful community.  The SSA National Conference is an opportunity, once a year, to gather with secular student leaders from around the country.  During the weekend-long conference, they will help you hone your leadership abilities, build your skills in organizing and growing your chapter, create space to build lasting friendships, and inspire you to accomplish great things.  For “Better Together”, they will be taking everyone on an in-depth journey into art of creating a community that builds strong social bonds, facilitates meaning-making, and transforms people’s lives.  2019 SSA National Conference
July 18 Nelson Mandela International Day
Nelson Mandela International Day (or Mandela Day) is an annual international day in honor of Nelson Mandela, celebrated each year on 18 July, Mandel’s birthday.  The day was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009, with the first UN Mandela Day held on 18 July 2010.  However, other groups began celebrating Mandela Day on 18 July 2009…Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world, the ability to make an impact.

The Mandela Day campaign message is:

“Nelson Mandela has fought for social justice for 67 years.  We’re asking you to start with 67 minutes.  We would be honored if such a day can serve to bring together people around the world to fight poverty and promote peace, reconciliation and cultural diversity,”  according to statement issued on Mandela’s behalf Wikipedia

July 22 Anniversary of the Scopes Trial
The Scopes Trial, formally known as The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes and commonly referred to as the Scopes Monkey Trial, was an American legal case in July 1925 in which a substitute high school teacher, John T. Scopes, was accused of violating Tennessee’s Butler Act, which had made it unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school.  The trial was deliberately staged in order to attract publicity ot the small town of Dayton, Tennessee, where it was held.  Scopes was unsure whether he had ever actually taught evolution, but he purposely incriminated himself so that the case could have a defendant.

Scopes was found guilty and fined $100 (equivalent to $1,40 in 2018), but the verdict was overturned on a technicality.  The trail served its purpose of drawing intense national publicity, as national reporters flocked to Dayton to cover the big-name lawyers who had agreed to represent each side.  William Jennings Bryan, the three-time presidential candidate, argued for the prosecution, while Clarence Darrow, the famed defense attorney, spoke for Scopes.  The trial publicized the Fundamentalist-Modernist controversy, which set Modernists, who said evolution was not inconsistent with religion, against Fundamentalists, who said the word of God as revealed in the Bible took priority over all human knowledge.  The case was thus seen as both a theological contest and a trial on whether modern science should be taught in schools. Wikipedia

July 26 Talk in an Elevator Day
History of Talk In An Elevator Day.  The Elevator has a long history, the first that there is record of being devised in 236BC.  The majority of these were powered by hand, or by trained animals who could manage the burden.  The Elevator really came into its own during the Industrial era, when transportation of coal and lumber and other raw materials were necessary, and these designs were the predecessors of the elevator of today.  Every year Elevators get more and more sophisticated, with greater safety measures in place to prevent tragedy.  But through it all, one thing has remained the same, when strangers get on an elevator together, they rarely speak.

Sometime in recent years, the concept of an Elevator Speech was developed for those seeking to expand their contacts in the elevator.  It describes a concise ‘commercial’ about who you are or what you do, and can only last 25-30 seconds, that’s just under 90 words!  Not a whole lot of time to say anything that matters.  Whether you’re trying to create new business contacts or just make new friends, there are a few things to keep in mind.  Keep your comments short and meaningful, smile at your counterpart, and asking questions is always a great way to stimulate conversation… Celebrate Elevator Day by getting over the old taboo of talking in an Elevator.  You never know who you’re going to meet, and it also a great chance to practice your Humanist elevator pitch. For ideas on how to start, check out Introduction to HumanismDays of Year.com

July 30 International Day of Friendship
Our world faces many challenges, crises and forces of division — such as poverty, violence, and human rights abuses — among many others — that undermine peace, security, development and social harmony among the world’s peoples.

To confront those crises and challenges, their root causes must be addressed by promoting and defending a shared spirit of human solidarity that takes many forms — the simplest of which is friendship.

Through friendship — by accumulating bonds of camaraderie and developing strong ties of trust — we can contribute to the fundamental shifts that are urgently needed to achieve lasting stability, weave a safety net that will protect us all, and generate passion for a better world where all are united for the greater good.  United Nations


Trivia Night
Test your wits together by creating teams at your local pub trivia or hold your own trivia night. You’ll see the wide range of knowledge your group poses from basic school curriculum to random facts and pop culture references. These are great conversation starters and fun team activities.

What’s In The Paper?
Invite folks to bring in articles they want to discuss or assign articles you want to discuss. More ideas and deeper understanding will flow when you have people sharing thoughts. Find out about lesser known publications or topics the mass media isn’t covering, including local news. Learn more about your members’ interests and consider developing programming around them. We recommend you consider articles from The Humanist, both print and online editions.

Local Summer Outings
Does your town or city have special summer events like movie nights, free museum days, festivals, or street fairs? These are great opportunities for you and your group to connect with your local community and explore new neighborhoods together. Check out local listings to find what’s happening in your area and check it out together.

Social Media Toolkit

#friends #humanistfriends

“Of all the means by which wisdom ensures happiness throughout life, by far the most important is the possession of friendship.” – Epicurus, Principle Doctrines, C300 BCE

“I am sensible, that, according to the past experience of mankind, friendship is the chief joy of human life and moderation the only source of tranquillity and happiness.” – David Hume, Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding, 1748

“Be the reason someone smiles. Be the reason someone feels loved and believes in the goodness in people.” ― Roy T. Bennett