Re: The Extropian Principles

Max More (
Sun, 4 Aug 1996 11:58:15 -0700 (MST)

At 11:42 AM 8/4/96 -0400, wrote:
>One of the things that sets my teeth on edge about "political correctness"=
>the apparent requirement in that creed that just about any public statement
>be full of race and gender "disclaimers". Frankly, I enjoy lampooning such
>nonsense. I think the Extropian Principles so strongly imply a regime of
>liberty, reciprocity and maximal peace that we shouldn't *have to* say
>anything about race, gender and violence. [snip]

>Nevertheless, Lyle may have a good point here. Because our explicit
>opponents and the superficial, simplistic press may well be inclined to tar
>us with the same brush that portrays racism and the violence of the=
>movement", some form of explicit statements regarding these matters may be=

I agree with Greg that we shouldn't have to say these things. Racism should
be so obviously ludicrous to someone who wants individuals to control their
biology and transform themselves that it's not an issue.

However, should an anti-racism statement be added to the Principles? I doubt
it. The Principles provide a condensed statement of the things extropians
are *for*, not a long list of the things we are *against* or find silly.
I've tried to stick to this positive focus increasingly closely in
successive versions. The overdue version 3.0 will continue that tendency.

Although the Principles may not be the place for an anti-racism statement or
a statement eschewing violence, we can certainly say these things in
discussions and interviews, and I have done so.

Another reason I resist putting such statements in the Principles is that I
want to keep them concise. Making these statements *accurately* would
require qualifications and discussion. For example, one might dislike
certain *typical* (but not essential) characteristics of a culture, and it
*might* be that this culture is almost completely coterminus with a racial
group (identified by some physical features). A *defeasible* suspicion of
people of this culture/race based on these characteristics might sometimes
be reasonable. In the same way, a statement against political violence would
need subtle qualifications about self-defense, special conditions, etc.

"Some of my best friends are human" :-)

Upward and Outward!


Max More, Ph.D. =20
President Extropy Institute (ExI)
Editor Extropy

"I have never lost that humility of soul which is the mark of the truly
great man." =97 A. Crowley