The Humane Party Oath comprehends a range of professional and personal duties, including those of loyalty, diligence, and care for the well-being of others. The Humane Party Oath reflects the influence and inspiration of other oaths that are widely used and respected in our culture.
For example, the first two sections of the Humane Party Oath closely parallel the oath that each U.S. President must take, which is prescribed in the U.S. Constitution. These sections deal primarily with loyalty to the people and nation of the United States of America.
The third section of the Humane Party Oath addresses duties pertaining to professional behavior, such as the duty to remain scientifically informed and to remain accountable for one’s own decisions. This section is comparable to the professionalism-related sections of the Hippocratic Oath, which has long been taken by physicians in some form.
Other portions of the Humane Party Oath reflect the inspiration of oaths that attorneys must take, which vary from state to state, and of the oath taken by U.S. federal employees.
Certain portions of the Humane Party Oath reflect the Humane Party’s unique position of leadership in the field of ethics; these portions have essentially no precedent in the other oaths described above. For instance, the fifth section of the Humane Party Oath includes a personal, ethical commitment to lead a vegan, cruelty-free life. The sixth section applies this ethical commitment to the political arena.
However, while the Humane Party Oath breaks new ground vis-a-vis other oaths, the Oath is not without precedent in the general field of ethics. For instance, the Humane Party Oath can be regarded as articulating the maxim of primum non nocere—“First, do no harm”—in modern oath form.