Originally I was going to encourage people to participate in a holiday called “Use Your Common Sense Day”, but then I thought, Why should common sense be used and recognized only for day? It should be used all the time.
Growing up in the Harris Household, common sense was highly encouraged by my parents. Me and my siblings have had our fair share of lectures by our parents, especially our father, about what we did wrong and what we should have done right. As adults, they can’t tell us what to do now, but if we ask them for their input, they will more than happily tell us what seems right and what seems asinine. Common sense by definition is “the ability to think and behave in a reasonable way and to make good judgment”( Merriam-Webster).
Every day it seems that a lack of common sense can be observed: getting behind the wheel intoxicated; waiting till the night before the due date to work on college papers; letting your gas tank get dangerously close to empty before filling it up. The question is, does the lack of common sense in the world outweigh the abundance of common sense in the world?
“Lack. Maybe? Or is it just that we see it more?” said business owner Christopher Gajewski. “When you take away art, physical education, music, and put a premium on the ‘sciences’, you dumb down the generation. A lack of common is a lack of critical thinking skills. A lack of common sense is a lack of humanities in our schools and in our lives.”
James de Moss, social media correspondent for a small business, said that it all depends on how you define common sense. He said that he feels common sense can best be described as the ability to question.
“For example: I find an article across my Facebook feed that says ‘such n such has decided that eating babies is a good idea and is a monster for it,'” said Moss.
“Let’s say I already disliked that public figure. I’m automatically inclined to agree with anything that supports my preconceived opinions about them because humans are inherently subjective and biased.”
“Lacking common sense means I would post that article and immediately believe it, perhaps even with a bit of skepticism. But I’d still repost it because it feeds my internal narrative.”
“Having common sense, however, would mean that I would question it, even if it agrees or fosters my internal bias. I come to a conclusion quickly that I either do not believe this outlandish idea or that it should be further investigated. I research. It is false. I do not post it.”
Moss said he feels that common sense, in a world where the definition is “thinks about something before doing it,” is a dying process and is not fostered in our youth as it once was.
“There is almost no common sense left in the world. In fact we are living in the world of idiocracy, ” said salesman Johnny Henderson. “People are always talking about what they would do in a zombie apocalypse, but all these non thinkers are the zombie invasion, tied to their smartphones playing Pokemon Go! Common sense has been flushed down the toilet of society! Anything pure, good, and of any real value is gone down the memory hole!”
While common sense isn’t something that can be taught, we can try to take the time to think all the way through before making a decision. Hopefully we make the wise decision. If we don’t make the right choice, then the best thing we can do is learn from it. Here are a few common sense examples:
- Do not drink and drive because you are just going to hurt someone, yourself, or both.
- If it is 50 degrees or lower outside, wear something warm. The likely outcome of not doing so will be you getting sick and passing your germs onto someone else.
- Don’t believe everything you hear on social media platforms, because not everything found on them is truthful. If you’re looking for legit news, look towards legitimate news sites; news channels; or a newspaper. (Some people still read them.)
- Before doing anything illegal, consider if what you’re contemplating is truly worth going to jail over. Criminal records follow you forever and don’t look good on job applications.
- “Being yourself means to speak, behave, and support with your own ideals, interests and intentions. When you put others’ behaviors or attitude into your actions, it’s obvious. Don’t play yourself,” said Carneisha Harris, benefits specialist for a Fortune 500 company.
Merriam-Webster. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 11 Nov. 2016.