Let’s start this off with some definitions;
Radical : adj. Departing markedly from the usual or customary
n. One who advocates fundamental or revolutionary changes in current practices, conditions or institutions.
Reason: n. The capacity for logical, rational, and analytical thought, intelligence.
Therefore, holding reason as an absolute, at this time in the world, makes one by definition, a radical.
I wear that proudly.
I, like many others, knew there was something rotten in the world, so I rebelled. At first it was against the hypocrisy in the church. Specifically the United Church of Canada allowing gay ordained ministers.
Now don’t go reading more into that than I said. I have no problems with any sexual conduct between two, or more, consenting adults, practiced in private or in front of willing voyeurs.
What I have a problem with is picking and choosing from the bible. Either it is the word of god or it is not. Either it is correct or it is not. Explicitly forbidding homosexuality in the bible does not make it wrong, except to Christians. And I just want them to practice what they preach.
The other side of that issues raises a question. Why would any homosexual want to be a Christian?
Next, I rebelled against Capitalism.
Coming of age in the early nineties, I fell in with the backlash against the pro-business eighties. I went for environmentalism and socialism. (‘The theory is sound. Humans are just too weak to implement it correctly.’ Uggh, that is enough to make me physically ill now.)
But still something was lacking. I was always asking why and never getting anything beyond dogma and appeals to authority. At this same time I looked into several religious options, to find what was lacking in my consciousness, but once again I found nothing more than dogma at their root. So I drifted philosophically.
I was raised with a strong work ethic, but no philosophical grounding as to why that was a good, moral trait. So, while I denounced Capitalism, I have held a paying job from the age of fourteen. All the while considering myself a subversive in the midst of a consumer based system. I knew I needed money to survive and I never had seen the need to suffer, so I wanted enough money to be comfortable. Yet, I could feel something was wrong with my beliefs and my actions.
Eventually I entered University as a commerce student, with the intent of knowing my enemy and making money while scorning the system. I wanted to bite the hand that feeds. I did well at it. Very well in all my business courses. Still something was wrong. I realized that, while I understand the need for production, I agreed with the altruist based philosophy of how we as a society should divide what was produced. I could feel the contradiction, but I couldn’t name it.
Then one day, while talking with some friends about university and career prospects, I explained the feeling I had. If I remember correctly it went like this;
“I just don’t understand. I want the money. I like the actual work involved and I am good at it. I just don’t want to do it.”
And my friend said, “You need to read some Ayn Rand.”
Some people never have a specific moments they can point to and say, “That is where my life changed.”
I borrowed “The Fountainhead” from a friend and read it voraciously, twice back to back. Then I went out to find more about Objectivist Philosophy and have never looked back.
This blog (and eventual physical organization) is the logical progression of the search I began so many years ago. The search lead me to Ayn Rand and Objectivism. Which in turn lead me to validate views on logic and reason I have held and suppressed. This in turn has lead me to critically view the world and want to change it to suit my values and beliefs.
Because that is what you do if you believe in something.
What I really want to do here is to show some young rebels that there is a cause to get behind. One that gives you real answers, requires that you to think critically and demands that you ask “Why?”.
And also to give hope.
Hope that we can keep our ideals and show the masses why we are right.
Hope that we won’t be radicals anymore.
August 13th 2006