I Have a Gripe

April 24, 2010

Parking Spaces and Protected Classes

Filed under: General Annoyances — alvb1227 @ 9:48 pm
Tags: ,

So today isn’t about huge issues facing the nation, New Jersey or even Morris County. This is a stupid little pet peeve that has bugged me for years. There was a discussion going on about it on Facebook today, so I felt the need to explain my opinion further.

More and more stores have “special” parking spaces. Not the legally mandatory handicap parking spaces that ever lot should contain. I am talking about parking spaces designated for the elderly, moms with children, pregnant women and so on. I know it is something small, but this drives me nuts.

For years I have worked with women who use their children as excuses for coming in late, leaving early, or my personal favorite, bringing their children in to work that are too sick to go to school. If they are too sick to go to school, then why are they well enough to bring the little petri dish to work and expose everyone to your kid’s germs? When I had a sick grandmother or a husband who just had surgery, I didn’t wheel them into the office to avoid taking off the day. No, I sucked it up and took the day off.  At a previous employer, there were several women who brought in their children and oftentimes they had zero control over them. This includes running relay races around the office, destroying the ladies room and generally having loud fits. Unfortunately, there was little that could be done because the women in HR were some of the worst offenders. I had repeatedly asked for a formal policy, but each time I did, some mom would come and give me a sob story as to why they needed to bring in their child. After awhile it got old and I would tell them while I felt for their specific issue, I shouldn’t have to tolerate their child’s poor behavior.

This is a huge distraction to others in the office. Moms are less productive when their children are in and then those of us without children are expected to pick up the pieces. Then when raises or promotions come around, those same women will complain when they are passed over or don’t receive as much as others who put in more time and energy. If you are going to have children and work, be prepared for all worst case scenarios.

Just because I don’t have children doesn’t mean my time and my life is less worthy. I made a choice to not have children. If you made the choice to have children, then you accept everything that comes with it. That includes controlling your children when in a store, staying home with them when they are sick and yes, dear friends, walking the same distance as everyone else to get to and from a store from a parking space. I actually tend to not go to the stores that have these “special” spaces for just that reason. If they do have them and I need to shop at that store, I park in those spaces, period. I’m not going to get a ticket. They aren’t legally required, so in my opinion, they are fair game.

Everyone wants to be a protected class today. Well, guess what, not everyone is. Maybe this is a little stupid thing and I am sure you can tell by me tone it bugs the crap out of me. You may wonder why is this such a big deal? To me, it speaks to a bigger issue with parents today. “Not my child; not my little angel. He’s special.” Well, they aren’t.

For decades women have wanted equality in all areas of life. Why should you be allowed to bring your children to work? Why should you have special parking spaces? Again, I’m probably making a bigger deal over this, but to me, it all rolls together. Have kids? Prepare for every inconceivable situation and have a plan. Most of all, don’t constantly tell people “you don’t have kids; you don’t understand.” You’re right, I don’t have kids, but I don’t have to understand. It is your life and everyone else shouldn’t have to figure it out for you and deal with your issue. It doesn’t take a village. It takes an organized household.

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