The two things that bogus faith values most… obedience and conformity…
… are responsible for every man-made cataclysm in history…
… for every war, crusade, witch hunt, inquisition, and ethnic cleansing large and small (there are no small ones, by the way).
… for Stalin’s purges, Hitler’s final solution, Mao’s cultural revolution, Pol Pot’s killing fields.
… for the Balkans war, the genocide in Rwanda, the troubles in Northern Ireland, the turmoil in Palestine, the horrors of North Korea.
… to name but a few.
That said, I declare obedience and conformity to be among the greatest evils… socially-accepted forms of collective ignorance, stupidity, and insanity that continue to extinguish hope, to destroy lives, to terrorize the innocent, and to stifle scientific and moral progress everywhere.
Of course, “collective” ignorance, stupidity, and insanity can only be opposed by the individuals among us who know better.
And so, I begin…
… by rejecting all appeals to “authority”, “tradition”, “divine command”, and “patriotism” to legitimize any body of knowledge or ethics.
… by pledging allegiance to no man, no flag, no God, no commandments.
I pledge allegiance… without guilt, fear, or reservation… only to the relentless pursuit of knowledge and to my innate sense of right and wrong… guided by two utterly simple principles: “Love yourself, love others.”