Endorse the Humanist Document
Today more than ever, there is a need for a New Humanism.
The world needs a New Universalist Humanism which:
1. Establishes the human being as a value and key interest;
2. States the equality of all human beings;
3. Recognizes personal and cultural diversity;
4. Promotes the development of knowledge beyond conventional ‘truths’;
5. Defends freedom of thought;
6. Rejects violence.
Endorse the Humanist Document to give voice to the
New Universalist Humanism!
Humanists address the fundamental problem: to know if one wants to live, and to decide on the conditions in which to do so.
Humanists are women and men of this century, of this time. They recognize the achievements of humanism throughout history, and find inspiration in the contributions of many cultures, not only those that today occupy center stage. They are also men and women who recognize that this century and this millennium are drawing to a close, and their project is a new world.
Humanists feel that their history is very long and that their future will be even longer. As optimists who believe in freedom and social progress, they fix their gaze on the future, while striving to overcome the general crisis of today.
Humanists are internationalists, aspiring to a universal human nation. While understanding the world they live in as a single whole, humanists act in their immediate surroundings.
Humanists seek not a uniform world but a world of multiplicity: diverse in ethnicity, languages and customs; diverse in local and regional autonomy; diverse in ideas and aspirations; diverse in beliefs, whether atheist or religious; diverse in occupations and in creativity.
Humanists do not want masters, they have no fondness for authority figures or bosses. Nor do they see themselves as representatives or bosses of anyone else.
Humanists want neither a centralized State nor a Parastate in its place.
Humanists want neither a police state nor armed gangs as the alternative.
But a wall has arisen between humanist aspirations and the realities of today’s world. The time has come to tear down that wall. To do this, all humanists of the world must unite.
The arguments of the Humanist Document
I. Global Capital
This is the great universal truth: Money is everything. Money is government, money is law, money is power. Money is basically sustenance, but more than this it is art, it is philosophy, it is religion. Nothing is done without money, nothing is possible without money. There are no personal relationships without money, there is no intimacy without money. Even peaceful solitude depends on money.
But our relationship with this “universal truth” is contradictory. Most people do not like this state of affairs. And so we find ourselves subject to the tyranny of money—a tyranny that is not abstract, for it has a name, representatives, agents, and well-established procedures.
II. Real Democracy Versus Formal Democracy
The edifice of democracy has fallen into ruin as its foundations—the separation of powers, representative government, and respect for minorities—have been eroded.
The theoretical separation of powers has become nonsense. Even a cursory examination of the practices surrounding the origin and composition of the different powers reveals the intimate relationships that link them to each other. And things could hardly be otherwise, for they all form part of one same system. In nation after nation we see one branch gaining supremacy over the others, functions being usurped, corruption and irregularities surfacing—all corresponding to the changing global economic and political situation of each country.
III. The Humanist Position
Humanist action does not draw its inspiration from imaginative theories about God, nature, society, or history. Rather, it begins with life’s necessities, which consist most elementally of avoiding pain and moving toward pleasure. Yet human life entails the additional need to foresee future necessities, based on past experience and the intention to improve the present situation.
IV. From Naive Humanism to Conscious Humanism
It is at the base of society, in the places where people work and where they live, that humanism must convert what are now only simple isolated protests into a conscious force oriented toward transforming the economic structures.
V. The Anti-Humanist Camp
As the people continue to be suffocated by the forces of big capital, incoherent proposals arise that gain strength by exploiting people’s discontent, focusing it on various scapegoats. At the root of all such neo-fascism is a profound negation of human values.
VI. Humanist Action Fronts
With the intention of becoming a broad-based social movement, the vital force of humanism is organizing action fronts in the workplace, neighborhoods, unions, and among social action, political, environmental, and cultural organizations. Such collective action makes it possible for varied progressive forces, groups, and individuals to have greater presence and influence, without losing their own identities or special characteristics.
The objective of this movement is to promote a union of forces increasingly able to influence broad strata of the population, orienting the current social transformation.