Today's Bizarro is brought to you by Three Blind Mice, Inc. "Making the world a wealthier place for a few of our closest friends."
Most decent people are angered when they see an able-bodied person parking in a handicap space. (Is "able-bodied" the PC term for the non-disabled nowadays? I can't keep up.) I am one of those who experiences revulsion when I see such a thing. But when I stop to think about it, I almost never see a legitimately disabled person using a handicap parking space. I don't mean never, I mean almost never.
The overwhelming majority of people I see squeezing out of their cars in handicap spots are obese, or have no visible disability at all. Not being able to stop eating is now a legal disability. I drink too much, can I get a permit for my car? Seems like it would behoove society to let drunk drivers park up front so they don't have to circle the lot too many times. Now, before you start accusing me of being bigoted toward fat folks, let me say I am not saying that they are bad people. But they have chosen to disable themselves and I question our society's decision to reward that with an opportunity to burn even fewer calories.
Medical costs go up for all of us when a large part of society chooses to abuse itself. That's why there are helmet laws. If someone wants to ride without a helmet and gets killed, that's natural selection. But if they are disabled for life and society has to pay for it, that's a decision by one person that costs the rest of us a fortune in the long run.
Don't get me wrong, I'm all for making things easier for those who don't have it as easy as most. For folks whose physical capabilities have been compromised without their consent or control, I say let them park up front. Let them park in the mall. Let them drive from store to store and shop through their window, most American shopping malls have plenty of room for this. But for the rest of our lazy, undisciplined nation, let them walk a few yards, maybe burn off a calorie or two.
In Asia, I've seen tiny people over ninety years old carrying a stack of firewood up a hill in their bare feet and not breaking a sweat. An alarming number of Americans can barely pick up the phone to order a triple-cheese-meat-lover's pizza without needing a six-pack of cold Pepsis to bring their temperature back down. What's wrong with this picture?