“It don’t make much sense, that common sense; don’t make no sense no more.” Those words are the chorus to the song Common Sense by one of my all time favorite singer, song writers John Prine. I was introduced to his music by a high school friend back in the 70s. His music spoke to me; it has resonated through my soul many times over the years. Recently, those words flooded my mind, especially when I thought about how crazy the times we live in have become.
Everywhere you turn someone is on the attack, arguing that their point of view is the only one. The other guy is responsible, and their political party has all the answers. Just turn on the television news. It is one 24 hour a day argument, a very passionate one, I might add. Social media finger pointing and fear mongering are today’s methods of debate. I find that most of them lack substance and have lost any semblance of civility. With so much shouting and discourse among the masses, it is no wonder I find myself asking; “Where does the truth really lie?” In asking that question, I was reminded of a quote from Sir Winston Churchill; “Truth is incontrovertible. Panic may resent it. Ignorance may deride it. Malice may distort it. But there it is.” It came from his War Memoirs and was no doubt tempered by trials of World War II, but it sure offers some common sense for today’s society. That really is what has been on my mind lately, the need for a little common sense. I have stepped back and tried to look at what is going on both locally and abroad. I have decided to take my heart out of my head and my head out of my heart in search of a clearer perspective.
In my younger years I had not gotten a grasp on wisdom. I really did not have the experience under my belt to know the difference between knowledge and wisdom. My Grandfather Gilbert had a saying; “The man’s got a lot of book learning, but lacks the sense to get out of the rain.” It was his way of saying knowledge without common sense (wisdom) is useless. It took me years to understand he was a very wise man. What he lacked in formal education he gained in experience. It was one of the greatest lessons I ever learned.
I think we could all use a little wisdom (common sense) right now on how to continue to move this community and our nation forward. I am concerned that simply having the facts is not enough, because in the end it is where and how you use them that really matters.