I need to thank one of my subscribers, Jan B., for the topic of today’s post. She recently commented on one of my daily notes, thanking me for my “common sense approach” in my articles because it helped to remind her that she was not losing her mind. Jan, I have to thank you for your many comments over the last year, as it fuels me to continue to write these articles every day. I have often told people who ask how I can write so often is that I do not write, I think, and my fingers type to express my thoughts. I am a terrible sleeper, so I have far too many hours in a day for thinking, and my iPad is usually not far away. Being a bit older and from New Hampshire, I don’t think of my thoughts as common sense. It is just who I am. I came to New Hampshire nearly 40 years ago because the state stood for life as it should be to me, basic, Live Free or Die. Some of us still feel that way, and maybe that is why we find the current direction of our country so hard to follow.
New Hampshire has always been a reflection of what I think our forefathers envisioned for the whole Republic. It is a place where anyone can come to seize opportunities for a good life and a good living. There is no state income tax or state sales tax in New Hampshire. You are not punished for your success by being forced to pay the way for others, but you will also find the people of the Granite State more than willing to lend a hand to others who need some help. We do it because we want to and not because the government says we have to. That is a huge difference. New Hampshire has grown over the years by people like me coming here to take advantage of the more straightforward, common-sense way of life. I find it interesting that states like Texas, Florida, Tennessee, and South Dakota are some of the fastest-growing in the country, and all are in the top ten ranking of states with the lowest tax burden. The governments of these states don’t expect those who work and succeed to pay for those who do not share the same work ethic. They do not believe in giving you a hand out from the cradle to the grave but will gladly give a hand up to those who need some support.
But what is common sense? I am not sure I can define it as it is more of a natural state of mind to me. It is being able to look at a situation and feel comfortable with the idea or think that doesn’t feel quite right. It is about being creative and yet staying grounded and fundamental. It is about instilling that process in our children and hoping that others who influence them are aligned. It is about sending them off to school to be taught the 4 Rs. I believe that Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, and Religion are still essential even if they don’t all start with an R. I still hold to the belief that the ABC’s of the alphabet need to be learned but that LGBTQ and CRT are things that kids in elementary school don’t have to study. That may not define common sense, but that is how I see it.
Common sense may be difficult to define and, therefore, may be impossible to teach to someone else. It is a feeling that can only be passed on by example to our younger folk. I do not believe that it takes a village to raise our children, but we all live in a village. Maybe the best we can hope for is that we choose our village wisely. We must never forget that when something in our village doesn’t sit well with us, we have a right to speak our minds and maybe nudge things back onto the straight and narrow path. That doesn’t make us evil or criminal. It makes us a part of the village. Common sense may be a tricky concept to grasp but let us hope it still exists and will spread and save this country which is still the greatest in the world.