There’s always been a distinction between being book smart versus street smart. I’ll admit I fall in the latter category, but we never wondered or were concerned with the obvious: common sense. It’s expected, right? I mean, we all have it and should use it everyday. But have you been watching TV lately? Or You Tube? Or anything on social media? Does that scare you? It should! What is common, normal, “the standard” we expect has changed. Lately, especially in my line of work; I’ve come to seriously question our new “norm.”
General knowledge, stuff we learned in grade school seems superfluous. Why remember it, I mean how useful is memorizing all the presidents or states in alphabetical order any use to an adult? But then I think, wait what happened to trivia? General knowledge? History? JEOPARDY? Will that show even exist with the millenials?
I digress….so I watch those random interviews conducted by talk show hosts on streets (Jay Leno was my favorite). It’s ridiculous! I am sad at how random adult U.S. citizens don’t know who Joe Biden is or can not name even one historical leader. I’m scared that these are the voters who can easily be skewed to an extreme and then the rest of us are forced to live the repercussion. Do we really need instructions to tell us not to place and hold the burning cup of hot coffee between our legs? Do we really need to be reminded not to leave our children or pets in cars in hot weather? Do we really need to be told not to walk in front of moving traffic or to not come down an already clearly signed ‘one-way street?’
Then I come to work. I understand that I deal with a wide range of people from a variety of backgrounds, cultures, and personal issues but surprisingly my problem is not with people, it’s with colleagues, judges, legal people! I feel horrible when I lose my patience but come on people…do I really need to tell you I work for the State and will not do your job even though you are completely incompetent? Ok so I mostly end up helping them, but my frustration leads me to curse, drink wine or worse, hate my job!
Then I move onto those citizens who “seem” to want harsher punishments and stricter laws, but when it comes down to serving the sentence themselves, there appears “what ifs” and sympathy. Now, I’m not saying that it isn’t necessary or merited in every case, but how many times have I seen “oh I just couldn’t do it” be a sorry excuse for serving justice? We use common sense as a basis for being “reasonable” but it’s frequently lost. Just recently, we had a young murderer walk away with a 9 year sentence after he beat the victim with a hammer over 30 times, robbed him, and lit him on fire before leaving in the victim’s car?!
Before this becomes another rant (too late), I’m going to leave yall with my current fear. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to watch the slightly old movie: Idiocracy. When I first saw it, my impression was OMG that’s so stupid, however, now more than ever, my nightmare exists as a script! This is where we are headed and I’m not the only one who should be scared shitless. I promise I will start volunteering at schools, praying harder, and doing everything I can to help raise awareness, but please, please someone, anyone; restore my faith that all is not lost! Common sense is sadly not so common.