#30 | Kenneth Button | Make No Change or Add the Seven Principles

Submission 30
Kenneth Button
River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation (Bethesda, MD) 4034

What is your suggestion or idea?

  1. Retain the current Seven Principles.

  2. If the UUA will not do so, then find a textual/structural mechanism to to include the entirety of the current Seven Principles text as they are as a distinct section within any new Article II structure.

The current Seven Principles should be retained. Just because one can revise the Principles does not mean that one needs to do so or should do so. The new language is not an improvement.The proposed revision is so far from the current Principles’ profound and poetic content and artful brevity that no modification/amendment of the new version would make it an improvement over the current text.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

Have you discussed this idea with your congregation or other UUs?


Dear Mona Lee (#23), Eric Burch (#29), Kenneth Button (#30), Ronald Schaeffer (#42), Diane Conrad (#132), Jerald Ross (#156), and Virginia Nixon (#183):

Your suggestions are all very similar. You all appear to want to add the 7 principles back into Article II. You are encouraged to work together, combine your suggestions into one proposed amendment, and decide who will be the delegate to sponsor it.

I agree that the principles should be retained. I cherish their artful brevity too.


The seven principles should be retained. I have seen NOTHING in the way of actual argument for getting rid of them. If “values” are felt to be needed, add them under a separate heading – although the “values” language proposed is vague, ambiguous, and uninspiring.

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I am @eburch (Eric Burch) and the author of submission #29. Charles DuMond recommended we consolidate our similar ideas to one thread. During the May 18th Zoom call, the breakout room I was in discussed my idea for adding the current seven Principles verbatim as Section C-2.1-and-a-half (then renumbering the sections). I will propose that as an amendment. There was discussion about adding an 8th Principle or reworking the current principles but that will not be the scope of my amendment. My amendment can serve as a base for additional changes; we can do this a step at a time until we get through the pre-GA discussion, mini-assemblies, then final plenary vote. If we want to collect some of the other discussions into the submission #29 thread that is OK, just keep in mind my submission is a simple first step.

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I have submitted an amendment to the proposal to add the existing seven Principles back into Article II. This is to facilitate the transition to adopting the Values and Covenant by a large number of UUs who have indicated they would not support the new Article II without the current Principles. If the new Article II is adopted, once the UU movement integrates the new Article II into our hearts the old Principles can be further transformed, or removed. Discussion about my amendment can be found at https://discuss.uua.org/t/29-eric-burch-add-the-seven-principles

If you are a delegate who supports such an amendment, please consider adding your name to the document to promote the amendment. Your name will indicate additional support to re-add the Principles and help convince the appropriate parties to add this amendment to be considered by the mini-assembly on Article II. The document is located at docs.google.com-document/d/1pxexh5noCpqh9N4YJTC3lZtRRre3j_W_FDZm0OxoWRo/edit

Thank you for your consideration.