By Mark MC.
“I’ll just be two ticks!” A not uncommon response to someone parking where they shouldn’t, but what if that is a disabled parking bay?
The Court has recently ruled on wheelchairs over prams on buses; but is this the right way to go?
Has it gone far enough?
Even now the media and people appear to have different views on what the ruling stated so what is going on?
What has happened to the old-fashioned courtesy, of giving up a seat for someone in more need than yourself….is chivalry dead?
Most of us will get old, some will become disabled, some of us are already there; so should we expect ‘special treatment’, preferential treatment?
This important issue covers far more than just buses or parking bays; there appears to be a basic disregard for people that require more, even if that doesn’t actually cost anything just, simply taking up space that could be used by someone else: the selfish gene?
Unfair appraisal? While it is true that many people would happily give up their seat, how many of those people would take a disabled parking space? The concept behind the aging Goofy cartoon behind the wheel springs to mind; where the perfect gentleman Goofy changes like Jekyll and Hyde.
Whatever your viewpoint there is sufficient concern to raise the question, what is going on? Why do so many feel that it is OK to keep a marked disabled seat or park in a disabled parking space without authority?
These actions can have severe effects on those that need them.
There are too may conditions to list here but lets just look at one, a more generic situation of chronic pain. Chronic pain affects hundreds of thousands of people; that is a pain that is constant over time, it might effect standing, walking, even sitting.
Many sufferers still try to maintain what is as near ‘normal’ lifestyle as they can but in order to do so they need just a little extra help, and that might be in the form of a specialised seat or parking space near to a shop, chemist or doctors. Is that really too much to ask?
A seat and/or a parking space, reserved for someone that needs it, in order for them to be part of the community without being an extra burden?
In the case of the bus court case it should never have gone that far, the bus driver already had the ability to sort it out; the current situation does little to help, the driver can simply wait for others on the bus to get angry about being held up; causing further animosity to either the disabled, elderly or pram pusher.
In the case of the selfish driver taking a disabled bay, even if just for a short time may have caused someone that needs that space to drive on; perhaps even to return home unable to get their shopping or prescription, because their pain to just too much for them to wait or to keep driving around looking for what is often far too few disabled parking spaces close to where they need to be.
Tackle these people at your peril; as even a ‘nice’ approach can be taken as an affront on their liberty, or at least that can be the impression assumed by the verbal abuse or even violent response.
Some countries don’t suffer from the same issues.
Some countries carry real fines, big fines if people disobey, plus they have law enforcers willing to issue fines. In a few countries the locals would never even dream of taking a disabled space. How have they done it?
It would be nice if legislation was not required, but in our current modern selfish age, the situation is unlikely to improve without a big stick….lets hope those people wont need it to get around!
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