Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Common Sense...

The American Heritage Dictionary defines common like this:
widespread; prevalent; occurring frequently; ordinary.

It also defines the word "sense" like this:
an intuitive or acquired perception or ability to estimate; a capacity to appreciate or understand.

Mix the words up a bit and you derive a definition of common sense that reads something like:
The widespread, ordinary, and acquired perception to understand.

Now, I am probably stretching things just a bit, but I think it is important for people to pick up on the idea of common sense. Believe it or not, this concept actually ruled the roost at one time. It governed society, the courts, and even Congress (I know that's hard to believe). Somewhere, over the passage of time, we pushed common sense into the background in favor of "rights", "self-entitlement", and whining.

For example, we have taught a number of generations of young people that they are entitled to everything. Children rarely get flunked anymore because it would be too hard on their young minds. Consequently, more and more children are going through school unable to carry on an intelligent conversation (without a dozen "you knows"), who cannot add worth a darn, and who took English but still can't spell it. If these kids are able to graduate, they are thrust out into the business world where life is harsh. Employers want people who can think for themselves and work hard. They can ill afford a lazy, slothful employee because competition is fierce. A young adult who never felt the sting of having to repeat a grade due to lack of effort, will not be capable of understanding why he was fired from his job for not working hard. "It's not fair!" he will yell.

Common sense would dictate that if he works hard, does his job, and is faithful to his employer, he will eventually be rewarded with a raise. But wait, the poor young man never learned these concepts in school ( or at home for that matter) so he finds himself unemployed and cannot figure out for the life of him why. Common sense would dictate that these important business ideas should be engrained into the hearts and minds of young people by their parents and teachers. Alas, clearly this is not the case anymore.

In upcoming articles, I will mention actually incidences found in newspapers and on the news to illustrate the lack of common sense in America today. One easy topic will be our national and state leaders who think throwing money at every problem fixes them. Yikes! Education is always a fun topic to address along with the lack of discipline in families and.... well, I could go on and on. If you hear of something interesting along this line, feel free to write me and I will be happy to post it on this blog.

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