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Diatribe: Paying To Ride A Handicapped Coattail.

05/16/2013

HandicappedDwarvesI’ve always loved amusement parks.  I particularly enjoyed roller coasters and, because the lines of people waiting for their turn on the big roller coasters are always the longest, every trip to a theme park required quite a bit of advanced preparation.  Before the internet, we had to rely on advertisements, word of mouth, and pamphlets containing maps that were distributed at rest areas and welcome centers along the highways to plan our day.  (My rule was always “stay to the right and we won’t miss anything”.)

Waiting in the long lines was part of the adventure.  We expected to wait and we prepared to wait.  There was no such thing as “cutting in line” and everyone waited patiently for their turn.

The lines these days at Disney World are apparently longer than ever.  According to the New York Post, some wealthy mothers have, allegedly, figured out a way to get around the long waits.  According to the article, they hire disabled people to pose as family members in order to jump to the front of the lines.  One woman in particular said she hired someone to escort her family through the park in a scooter labeled with a handicapped sign that allowed the group to enter through a special entrance at the front of each attraction.

Handicapped Floridians are being pimped out for as much as one thousand dollars per day and the people hiring the “guides” often think they’re doing them a favor.  I’ve heard rumors that some of the handicapped people aren’t even handicapped at all … they’ve simply borrowed a wheelchair so they don’t have to wait in lines.

My blood boils when I see a perfectly capable person walk away from a vehicle that they’ve just parked in a space designated for handicapped drivers (I’d like to sit these lazy fools in a wheelchair, or hand them crutches, for just one day and see if they ever take a spot from a truly handicapped person again), so it’s no surprise that I find this practice despicable.

Apparently, Disney is investigating.  But what can they really do?  Hopefully, people with legitimate handicaps won’t be seen in a poor light as a result of this foolishness.  Of course, the New York Post doesn’t have the best reputation either.

UPDATE 09/23/13: Guests with disabilities no longer ushered to the front of lines at Disney Parks.

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8 Comments
  1. Oh what the 1% won’t do to feed their sense of entitlement.

    Let’s keep it simple: no matter how you spin it, it’s a lie, from the people who hire the disabled “guide” to the disabled guide who takes the job.
    Both parties are at fault and it’s the children who suffer because they’re being taught that it’s okay to lie if it benefits you in some way.

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  2. 100% seems like a trend. This is bothersome on so many levels and is metaphor for the haves and have nots. People just want to be treated fairly in life. Is that too much to ask?

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  3. I was once at LAX and some guy in the “express” scan area turned to the guy behind him and said “Thank God we do not have to wait in line with the cattle.” Some people really do believe they are better than everyone else because they have money.

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  4. This bothers me too as it clearly is not using the policy for the purpose for which it was designed and commoditises disability. Secondly, a child who is never taught how to wait usually grows up to be a self-entitled, petulant adult.

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  5. About 20 years ago I was severely limited in my mobility by arthritis. It required me to use 2 canes to walk around. I was lucky to have a sedentary job, so once I got to work (except for bathroom breaks) I was okay. I had a handicapped placard for my vehicle. From time to time I would have a few good days strung together where I could walk without aids. If I needed to use my canes or I was in a lot of pain, I would use a handicapped parking spot, if not I would use regular parking. I remember one day being in a lot of pain & needing some minor thing from the store. There was no close parking, so I used the handicapped spot. When I got out of my vehicle & started walking to the store a few young men started jeering at me I was only handicapped by my excess weight, why was I taking up a handicapped stall? After a steroid treatment lasting about 6 weeks, I was able to walk again with no trouble & turned in my handicap placard. I was lucky enough to get almost 20 years of good mobility. Now it’s back & I have reduced mobility again. I use a cane to walk & if I go into Walmart I take an electronic cart. I have had people jeer behind me again about my weight not being a legitimate handicap because I don’t really look crippled. It’s very disturbing to be judged this way.

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    • Thanks for sharing your story. It is truly terrible how quickly some of us are to judge (myself included). There are many kinds of disabilities that manifest themselves in many different ways.

      It’s terrible that rich Manhattan mothers will abuse a system designed for those who truly need assistance.

      Like

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