Letter to the Editor: What’s happened to common sense and ethics?

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As I watch or read the news, I am wondering what happened to common sense and ethics. It doesn’t take a brain (yet I have an educated one) to see they are lagging!

Let’s start with the pandemic. We lacked PPE because we outsourced our basic needs manufacturing elsewhere, making us vulnerable during a crisis. How could our leaders be so short-sighted as to not know better? Common sense was lacking right from the beginning!

We need pharmaceutical companies to research and find cures, but we also need them to act ethically so all patients who need it can benefit — not just the ones with big wallets. All too often they are sucked into a whirl of greed (see EpiPen and insulin!). Or simply watch “60 Minutes,” which revealed the illegal practice of “off-label selling,” which makes the pharmaceutical companies using such practices, their sales reps and unscrupulous doctors very rich, while leaving behind an array of people with drug dependencies, bankruptcies and death in some cases. We would expect our leaders to forbid this circle of “abuse” since we pay a high price on both ends of that circle. With money tied up in scams, it’s amiss for greater good. We must insist that our government takes an active role in holding perpetrators accountable while supporting business models that integrate “ethical conduct” to stem off greed. Plain common sense!

“Treat others the way you want to be treated” means you don’t call people names “willy nilly” when you disagree … and where is color mentioned or excluded in that rule? Regardless of who you deal with, you should treat others with the same respect you would want them to treat you, and that goes for all colors. Be even nicer to people who suffer from past and raw wounds, the sick and vulnerable who need more love because of hardship. And if you have a hard time finding empathy try a strategy called “role reversal.” For example, try living in a colored shoe since 1968.

My point is, for things to change we need fair leaders with infinite common sense and unwavering ethics to stand against abusive practices. Besides, each of us has a responsibility to lead by example. Gandhi once said: “Where there is love, there is life.” Unless we make this life worthy of his wisdom, how else are we going to live in a peaceful world?

— Nathalie Scott, Hopkinton

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