No. of Recommendations: 14
I also thought this essay was very good until I neared the end of the piece. "Zero tolerance policies" also happen to be one of my pet peeves, since they encourage the exercise of zero IQ. Of course, most reasonable people recognize the stupidity of expelling a child whose mother packed a plastic butter knife with her school lunch, or expelling a child for possessing a two-inch long plastic key fob shaped like a pistol. However, lumping parental consent in with these other examples only serves to trivialize this highly emotional and complex issue and demonstrate contempt for the pro-choice positions held by a majority of Americans.

The next paragraph continues in this vein, albeit in a rather incoherent fashion. "Churches became business"? The best example I can think of is Pat Robertson's religio-commercial empire, but from the tone of the essay, I kinda wonder if he and his pals are really the object of the criticism. "Judges sticking their noses in professional sports?" Why is this even mentioned? After all, professional sports is a business and therefore subject to the same laws as most other commercial enterprises (except, of course, for baseball's anti-trust exemption). The one that really irks me though, is the mention of the Boy Scouts. I must assume the writer is berating the audacity of a federal judge even attempting to rule that BSA cannot practice institutional discrimination against gay and non-Christian children while continuing to accept taxpayer-funded subsidies.

It is my belief that the Supreme Court's siding with BSA on this was an abandonment of common sense in favor of "traditional values". These would of course be those same values that, until recently, held it was perfectly ok to discriminate against non-white and female citizens and deny them basic rights such as equal access to education, employment, and the vote.

Finally, other posters have addressed the McDonald's coffee scalding suit issue, and the facts of the case are briefly summarized here:

Regarding that entire paragraph about the "woman who was not smart enough to realize that coffee is hot," does anyone else recognize the absurd irony reflected in the latest McDonald's TV commercials? These are the ones that show the harried wage slave madly rushing through his morning routine (exaggerated by camera fast-motion), until he pulls into the McDonald's drive-thru for breakfast and everything instantly becomes serene (including camera slo-mo) as he blissfully sips his not-yet-cooled McCoffee, before he even pulls away from the window. Death of common sense in advertising perhaps, considering the 700+ lawsuits McDonald's has faced for injuries resulting from this practice.

Alas, what starts out as an entertaining and refreshing treatise on the uncommonness of common sense soon turns into a just another partisan political screed. Ultimately, it only appears to champion that special brand of common sense championed by so-called conservatives. This would be the kind that proposes if we just don't tell kids anything about sex, they'll never know it exists. But if they somehow find out about it anyway, all we have to do is tell them "don't have sex" and of course they won't. Therefore, there's absolutely no need to teach kids anything about birth control or STDs since they're all practicing abstinence…or at least they would be if it weren't for those evil, Communist, Macintosh-using, Godless liberals spilling the secret that there is such a thing as sex. (Same goes for drugs, too). Sigh.

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