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Repost: The death of common sense

Repost from the olden days (April 13, 2012). When no one knew me.

For years my husband and I have been tossing around one of our more brilliant ideas: Common Sense Court. I don’t know when it came into our thoughts first, but I remember one of the first things we thought should be sent to this court…………and, that was the woman who sued McDonald’s because the hot cup of coffee she ordered in the drive through and promptly placed between her legs so she could get on with her commute, had splashed and burned her. Let me say that again, she ordered hot coffee, put it between her legs where it splashed and burned her and SHE sued McDonald’s. Excuse me. They should have sued her for being stupid! But, I digress.

My first question was whether she thought her coffee should have been served lukewarm. She’d have sued for that, as well, “I asked for HOT coffee!” Pain and anguish and all that.

My husband’s first comment was, “They should send #%$* like this to a common sense court!” A common sense court is where a jury of twelve of your reasonable peers decides if this is indeed something that even needs to see a courtroom, much less one with million dollar lawyers or a public-paid judge. What’s to judge here? She behaved stupidly. Guilty. Move along.

There have been many stories like this over the years and I have to ask. Have we lost our ability to think rationally? Have we lost our common sense? Reminds me of my grandma saying, “hasn’t got the common sense God gave her.”

Common sense is not so common. ~ Voltaire

Well, we aren’t the only ones on this track of having lost our common sense; see the following.

An Obituary printed in the London Times

Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:
– Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
– Why the early bird gets the worm;
– Life isn’t always fair;
– and Maybe it was my fault.


Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more than you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are in charge).

His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.

Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children.

It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.

Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims.

Common Sense took a beating when you couldn’t defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.

Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his son, Reason.

He is survived by his 4 step brothers:
– I Know My Rights
– I Want It Now
– Someone Else Is To Blame
– I’m A Victim

Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone. If you still remember him, pass this on. If not, join the majority and do nothing.


I'm a writer making my way through life and offering observations as I go. Old enough to know better but that doesn't stop me.

22 thoughts on “Repost: The death of common sense

  1. Can’t help it–last April 13th I didn’t even know what a blog was except that lots of people did it and apparently it wasn’t illegal. I like your idea of the Common Sense Court, but if you follow tradition, you must first find “Twelve good men and true . . .” which leads to issues of sex discrimination and the realization that a good man is truly hard to find.

  2. I can I sit on the bench? Apart from the cool black robe, I am desperate to convict people for being overly litigious and ridiculous.

    1. Oooh, I’m aching to do it, too. I’m so sick of stupid people sucking up court time and money with idiotic issues. They ought to be fined for showing up for even filing the crap.

  3. Seriously I have to wonder where peoples heads are at, it seems stupidy can earn you a payout which is what most want mostly I’m in pain and suffer when see stuff like

    And by odd coincidence I’ve just written something similar..perhaps common sense is catching:)

  4. Hear hear. I couldn’t agree more. I was absolutely floored to hear about the 6-year-old boy suspended and charged with sexual harassment for singing, “I’m Sexy and I Know It,” a song that’s everywhere, I might add. Even in an M&M commercial. If ever a passing soul needed resurrection, it is Common Sense…

  5. So well said. Some of the stuff we see going on in the world today has those of us still hanging on to common sense shaking our heads.

    1. Maybe we should just give in and start a class action lawsuit to include everyone who is fed up with the lack of common sense in the world. Or, common decency.

  6. FYI, I’ve been looking for the actual source of this essay for some time. Most recently I discovered one very similar from 1998 by Lori Borgman ( Most comments I find indicate that the one we’ve been attributing to The London Times is actually a version similar to Ms. Borgman’s with more “Americanized” examples cited. Also, commenters across the internet have said they remember reading it originally in the 1970s. So the origin remains a mystery. Good piece, though.

  7. The emptiness of physics which is simply reverse engineering Mother Nature’s long history of creating a livable environment . . . which science is now endeavouring to distort and corrupt . . . this website paints a common sense frame of reference . . .

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