January 17th, 2003


Strong Like Peanut Butter

These are some of the things I believe strongly, almost inflexibly, to the degree that argument against them with me would be virtually pointless. This is not an exhaustive list; it’s just the things that came to mind. In no particular order:

I believe people are responsible for their own actions.
I believe we all have choices, even if sometimes they’re all hard choices, or bad ones.
I believe that, generally speaking, it is wrong to physically harm the person or property of a non-consenting other, and it should be illegal to do so. (Barring special circumstances – eg, it is necessary to harm a man in order to prevent him from harming another.)
I believe that, generally speaking, it is wrong to mentally or emotionally harm the person of a non-consenting other, but it should not be illegal to do so.
I believe that it is possible for society to care for the poor and the sick without the government mandating programs to do so.
I believe people should do the right thing because it is right, not because G-d, the government, or their mothers are watching.
I believe all men are not created equal, but the law should treat them as though they were.
I believe that we are all endowed with certain unalienable rights, among them the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
I believe I should respect a man’s view if he says, “Homosexuality is a sin against G-d and mankind, and those who consider themselves homosexual should spend their lives resisting their passions.” But I owe no respect to the view that homosexual acts should be illegal, or that homosexuals should be in any way prevented or coerced from doing whatever they want with their own lives.
I believe more people disagree on the means than the ends.
I believe most people think they are making the best choices, even if they’re not.
I believe many people know they are doing the wrong thing and just don’t care enough.
I believe it’s easier for me to figure out what the best choice for myself is, than to figure it out for anyone else.
I believe freedom is one of the most precious and beautiful things in the universe.

I believe I am wrong about a lot of things.

But not about these.