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Has Common Sense Flown Out the Window?


Common Sense

Common sense seems to be a thing of the past. What was once common knowledge or thought process has seemed to have left people. Especially with the COVID-19 pandemic inflicting so many new guidelines for people to follow.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines commons sense as a “sound and prudent judgment based on a simple perception of the situation or facts.” Oxford languages describe the noun as “good sense and sound judgment in practical matters.”

Commons sense like “treat others as you’d like to be treated.” That one should not be difficult to follow. Yet many people seem to forget deep down we are all alike — we all bleed when we are cut. So it should be obvious that actions and words can affect a person.

Or what about “every action has an equal or greater reaction.” Most believe that common sense is pretty self-explanatory, right? However, in recent years this seems to not be the case.

Common SensePeople seem to forget that when they do something, anything, to another person it creates a ripple effect. For example, doing something nice for someone could in turn make them want to do it for another. Years ago this common sense was done naturally. A person would help their neighbor without expecting anything in return.

The sad part is that children have a bit more common sense than most adults. For them they treat everyone equally; they do not see gender, race, or color. They see a new friend to play with. Somehow growing older makes people lose this common sense.

Or how about the common sense police officers are supposed to obtain. Like in the George Floyd case; former officer Derek Chauvin showed no commons sense when he knelt on Floyd’s back and neck for over nine minutes.

After Floyd’s death, many protests broke out all across the United States. A lot of these protests resulted in violence and destruction. This caused their voices and message to be lost along the way. Standing up for what one believes in is a good thing. Using violence is not the way to do it.

A message is better told peacefully than forcefully. Sort of like the old saying goes “You catch more flies with honey.”

It should also be common sense for any adult to keep children out of harm’s way. However, this has seemed to be lost in recent cases. Like in Chicago when two males killed a 7-year-old in a McDonald’s drive-thru.

Another man has been charged with shooting a young child during a road rage incident. An officer recently shot and killed a knife-wielding teenager. Granted in this case the teen had a weapon. However, one would think common sense would dictate to disable the child, not kill.

Officers have also been involved in spraying a 9-year-old child with pepper spray. Why? Because the child was having a meltdown and not cooperating. Imagine that, a child was acting like a child. Common sense would normally tell a person this is normal childhood behavior. Most believe using pepper spray on a child is excessive.

If a person analyzes a scenario and then makes a clear, logical decision based on what they see — they are using common sense. Like if a person cooks something inside of an oven they know that the pan is going to be extremely hot. Therefore common sense tells them to use a towel or potholder to remove the item.

Common sense was once found in abundance now it seems to have flown out the window.

Written by Sheena Robertson


Science ABC: What Is Common Sense… Really?; by John Staughton

BBC: George Floyd: Timeline of black deaths and protests

Inline Image Courtesy of Benjamin Gray’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Cold, Indrid’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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