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Monday, June 10, 2013

So advocating for the disabled makes me self-righteous? No, it means I have integrity which many people lack


THE COMMENT IN QUESTION

bbl has left a new comment on your post "Oh look, this coach has room for my golf clubs ......": 

I don't know the circumstances in this particular case, but when I took the GO train the accessibility coach was never full of people who actually needed to be there (i.e. people with assistive devices, special needs, disability, etc.). If this guy isn't keeping someone who needs an accessible seat from getting one, get over it. If he was, I'm sure he'd move if asked.

This post comes off extremely self-righteous and annoying. People need to chill. 

Posted by bbl to You. Me. Ride This Crazy Train - Adventures and Observations on The GO at June 9, 2013 at 12:15 AM


MY REPLY

C.J. Smith has left a new comment on your post "Oh look, this coach has room for my golf clubs ......": 

At BBL

So when the parking lot at your local shopping plaza is empty, do you park in the handicapped spots? Or do you leave them empty?

The accessibility coach MUST remain accessible. Doesn't matter if you don't see anyone in a wheelchair. If the coach is full of people and their crap, the person in the wheelchair who just so happens to appear at the next stop becomes a second class citizen and has to miss his or her train.

That's fair to you?

But at least Mr. Able Bodied Golf Cart Guy gets where he's going. Right? 

Posted by C.J. Smith to You. Me. Ride This Crazy Train - Adventures and Observations on The GO at June 9, 2013 at 1:07 PM

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

People like BBL are the ones who park in the handicapped spots at GO stations waiting to pick up wives and husbands. They park there because they're usually open and they figure no one uses them. Your comment to people like her will fall of deaf ears. People like BBL have don't understand why accessibility laws exist and roll their eyes when the accessibility elevator is too full with people on the platform which means she has to use the stairs.

That's the kind of asshole she/he is.

ExGOnowTTC said...

What if the BBQ and golf clubs were Special Needs?

Anonymous said...

Actually, I tend to agree with BBL. At least his clubs were out of the way. If a wheelchair came on, I'm sure he'd move them.

You can't compare it to parking in a handicap spot. When you do that, the car is unattended and if a handicap permitted car comes along, he's screwed.

In this case, I don't really think it's that big a deal. Of course, if a wheelchair came along and needed the space where the golf clubs were and he refused to move...different story.

Anonymous said...

I agree with ANON@10:50AM...

Its like the Priority Seating in the TTC... if someone needs the seat, then you/Mr. Golf Clubs move on... if they dont, then its all out war :)

Jack C. said...

As a high school teacher, I hear a lot of this nonsense from students who blatantly break the rules and get caught. The two most frequent responses students offer are: "What's the big deal?" and "You need to chill" and "Calm down, it's just..."

The thinking is, the rules are all well and good until they encroach on my immediate wants/needs, in which case, I come first and the rules (and other people) be damned.

I wonder if posters on your blog realize how silly they sound when they know they're in the wrong and suggest the problem is people caring too much.

Yeah, I'm sure the world would be a much better place if we all just "chilled" and stopped caring so much about basic social codes and conventions:

"Jeez, CRA! So what if I can't be bothered paying my taxes? Why don't you just chill?"

"OMG, Officer! Don't you have anything better to do than pull me over for going 40 over the limit and making three unsafe lane changes? What's the big deal?"

"What do you mean let people with assistive devices use the elevators? I want to get down into Union Station NOW!"

Cindy Boyd said...

But Jack C. you are assuming that someone NEEDED the elevator/seating at that point in time. But in this instance what if no one NEEDED it? As long as you make way immediately for someone who requires the service, then there is no reason not to use it yourself in the meantime.

I agree with Anon at 10:50 as well. All out war if you don't move for someone who requires it -- but in the meantime, make use of the seating yourself if there is no required/priority need.

Skin Man said...

And what about the douche's that actively ignore their fellow passengers? Is my crap in your way? Too bad I'm sleeping!

Remember the dude that left his bike at the doors and then went up stairs?!

Anonymous said...

Skin Man...agreed. Those types are total d-bags.

calvinhc said...

I have to partly agree with BBL. There is nothing wrong with using accessible space, provided one is not off in their own world oblivious to what is going on around them. If one uses accessible space for one's luggage and one anticipates the need for the space to be used by someone it was intended for and makes it easy for that to happen, then there is nothing wrong with what was done.

Unfortunately, far too many people park themselves and drift off into space and are not aware of the need until someone is trying to get onboard and ends up not being able to do so.

The same goes for handicapped parking spots. I would rather have someone pull into one of these to wait for someone than to partly block a row where vehicles need to get past. This leads to bigger logjams when cars pull up to the waiting vehicle thinking they will move and cannot manouver around it. As long as a licenced driver is in the vehicle, it is not PARKED and can be moved if needed.

Jack C. said...

Maybe I'm extreme in my views, but I think the accessibility coach (as with parking spaces and service elevators) should be treated as sacrosanct. To my mind (and I'm by no means the authority here), saying "Go ahead and use it as long as you yield it to someone who needs it more" opens up a floodgate of abuse.

If you open up the accessibility coach to able-bodied riders (and their luggage), those who feel entitled to it won't be limited to the courteous, who are, most regrettably, in the minority.

It's happened more than once that I've sat in the upper level of the accessibility coach and heard an exasperated CSA down below shouting, "Excuse me! There are guests with special needs aboard this coach and they require seats! The seats on this level are reserved for those with requiring assistance. Could I ask some of you to please find another coach?"

This occasionally goes on for several minutes, indicating that several riders are ignoring the CSA, pretending to sleep, hiding behind newspapers, in the "personal bubble" of electronics," or playing that childish game of chicken where they all glance around hoping someone else will give up their seat.

I'd rather see the lower level of the accessibility coach treated as a "reserved" space rather than a "yield if necessary" space. It's not the courteous I'm worried about, it's the thundering hoard of Stupid that makes up so much of the population.

Anonymous said...

I have found the exact opposite Jack. I often ride the Accessibility Coach as I enjoy the increased leg room when sitting and I enjoy chatting with the CSA's.

Whenever someone that requires a seat comes on board, at least 4-5 people (including myself if I am seated) are up and vacating their seats.

If the accessibilty coach was only used for the disabled, it would mean another 25 people standing somewhere else on the train while seats are empty.

Anonymous said...

Although I'm sure there are many that treat this car as their own VIP secion, GO's own Accessibility Guide (page 11) states that in the accessibility coach:

"Flip-up seats are available in this area for all customers to sit on, but signs indicating
priority seating advise customers to give up these seats upon request."

Though I loath those people who use this coach because it allows them to stretch out, this car is open to everyone until those in need...need.

Jack C. said...

Well, as I say, just my views. It is funny how people's behaviour quickly changes during rush hour, though. Not just in accessibility coach, either.

I always chuckle seeing people do the "platform shuffle" during rush hour. This is when people try to do adopt an optimal standing position while the train is pulling into the station. As it slows, riders aren't 100% sure where the doors will line up, so they start doing the "shuffle" as the train slows, trying to guess where the doors will be, and shuffling sideways as a unit, locked in a grudge match with those standing beside and behind them. I've also seen two strangers inch side by side toward a door that isn't open yet, clearly locked in competition to get there first. Their body language communicates, "Well, I don't know if I'll get there first, but I'll be damned if this guy s going to beat me!"

Then there are the ones who gum up the works boarding. As riders begin flooding the cars, they step into the car and look agonized and immobilized as to whether to rush for a seat on the lower level or try their luck above. Some stand there debating with themselves and trying desperately to calculate the number of seats on the lower level for ages while others are lined up waiting to get on.

The other concept that escapes people during rush hour is basic courtesy in folding two lines into one. When two lines from different directions need to be reconciled into one (e.g. when a lot of people are detraining and some are coming from the upper level and others from the middle level) the obvious thing to do is to alternate every other person from each direction.

The other end of the spectrum is the overly courteous/timid type who doesn't realize that by standing back and letting everyone else pass, they are making the decision not only for themselves, but for everyone standing behind them as well.

I find people are more courteous when it costs them nothing to be courteous. It's no big deal giving up one's seat when the train is half empty. But during rush hour, some otherwise reasonable people turn into the cast of Lord of the Flies.