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Obesity Shouldn't Get You a Parking Space

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Guest blogger Jane: You know what really chaps my hide? When overweight people get handicapped parking passes!

handicapped parking space

In my town, handicapped spots are in high demand. The ten or so parking spaces closest to the mall, grocery store, and restaurant entrances are almost always taken, but not by people in wheelchairs and walkers, but by those who could benefit from walking a couple extra feet.

I understand that the definition of disability spans a broad spectrum -- and that not all handicaps are visible, but the number of grossly overweight people who have handicapped parking passes seems to be multiplying as fast as their BMIs. If being morbidly obese (or having a health problem caused by one's obesity) qualifies someone for special treatment, then why not extend that privilege to another group whose personal choices have made it difficult for them to get from point A to point B without assistance -- namely, mothers of small children?

Any woman who has tried to get any combination of screaming and squirming infants/toddlers/preschoolers from the car to a store entrance 100 yards away without a shopping cart certainly feels disabled and, in my opinion, is just as handicapped as many of those who are awarded special stickers from the DMV.

If obesity is one's ticket to a coveted parking space at the grocery store, how about passing out handicapped placards to those of us who are lugging around an equal amount of weight ... in the form of our kids?!!!

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64 comments so far | Post a comment now
ashley January 15, 2009, 6:17 AM

No Kidding!! There is only one store in this suburb I live in that has a few spots that are reserved for families with children. It’s a locally owned grocery store called Crest. When I was pregnant there were some spots outside of the mall for women who are expecting. I don’t think it’s ok for obese people to get handicapped stickers. My husband is a big guy so I always park waaay out and he gets mad. I’m like so what we need the exercise.

Liz January 15, 2009, 8:06 AM

Okay, I hear that and I agree.

It goes along with all the smokers who get a Handicap parking permit because they have repiratory disease.

We are killing ourselves, very slowly and painfully, with our bad choices.

I bet obesity and smoking are the main reason so many people are having such horrendous health problems.

SB January 15, 2009, 8:22 AM

Your blog is really not worth responding too. Get a life. It’s unfortunate that you will most assuredly pass on your intolerance, bigotry and ignorance to your kids. Why don’t you find something more productive to do with your time rather than blogging such crap.

chris January 15, 2009, 8:45 AM

I agree with SB. I have two kids and have gone thru the getting a toddler and infant out of the car and into a store…BIG DEAL! So by your logic being a Mom should qualify us as “handicap” -well I prefer not to look at myself thay way. You really need to get a life and stop complaining so much. I can’t image how much fun you must be to be around.

lesle January 15, 2009, 9:05 AM

I so agree! It also drives me crazy when I see obese people driving around the little carts at the grocery store. For Gods sake, get up and walk maybe then you wouldn’t be so fat.

Susanne January 15, 2009, 9:20 AM


Lisa January 15, 2009, 9:50 AM

If they had stickers for stupid people, you would all qualify! Did you ever think that a handicap might cause people to gain weight. They may have not chosen to be overweight but all of you have chosen to have children. Deal with it.

Anonymous January 15, 2009, 10:02 AM

First of all not all people are sick due to their obesity, people get sick and are unable to be active,,so therefore they gain weight. Another reason for people who are sick to gain weight is the horrible medicine they are on. You really should think things thru before quickly making judgementon people because of their weight. I have lupus, fibromyalgia and on many different meds that has caused me to be overweight,, but I also run on limited energy but stil am expected to take care of the same responsiblities as others, like feed my family, clothe my children etc. I dont want to give up all my freedom, so save what energy i have park closer so when I get home I have the energy to cook my family dinner. Please think before you speak.

Minxy Mimi January 15, 2009, 10:04 AM

Well, if it were just for being obese, then I agree with you. BUT, obesity isnt always caused by eating too much, or being lazy… you assume too much, IMO Sometimes obesity is a direct result of medications and treatments that control something else the person is dealing with medically. I remember seeing a cousin of mine very obese, and come to find out later the meds he was on, and his inability to exercise because of the illness he was battling caused this weight gain. He later passed away from this illness. I think way too may people love to bash fat people… I see the rude comments already here and I personally find it shameful. I am obese, I don’t need a special parking space or a cart in the store… but I do not just look at people and judge them without knowing their stories. Maybe people should stop being so rude and mean and start practicing kindness once in awhile. I personally find this rant not only unnecessary, but as PP said intolerant. JMHO

Sandie January 15, 2009, 10:04 AM

Unfortunately your ignorance is showing! People cannot get a handicapped sticker unless their Doctor signs the form from the DMV certifying the need to have one. Doctors won’t sign unless you actually need it! I’m fat an in a wheelchair and it chapps me that jerks like you continue to make life ugly out there by your bigoted comments! Get over yourself, and grow a heart.

Minxy Mimi January 15, 2009, 10:05 AM

Anon was me minxy_mimi I dont know why it didn’t show up, I stand by my statements and do not hide behind an anon.

rugbymom January 15, 2009, 10:08 AM

Wow is right, Suzanne. I have to say, it sure wouldn’t hurt to let Moms with small children park a little closer to the front. I have a lot of respect for facilities that have pregnancy parking. Some moms are probably a lot more graceful and skilled than I am, getting into the store and my kids settled in so I can shop is always a goat rodeo for me, but is obviously not a big deal for some other moms. However, I like to park further away so I can get more walking in since I don’t have much time to exercise, besides how would you regulate that? I do admire you for speaking your opinion on such a delicate subject. It obviously brought out some strong opinions!

ame i. January 15, 2009, 10:18 AM

I suspect the angry comments are coming from overweight people.
I hit 200 pounds (I’m 5’6”) when I was pregnant with my 2nd child. There were no special parking spots for pregnant women and women with babies/small children at that time.
It is frustrating to see someone take a handicapped spot at the mall. Somehow they are able to walk through the mall, but need that parking spot. Odd.

Alley January 15, 2009, 10:30 AM

RugbyMom and Jane

for hundreds of years mothers have walked with child in hand ,and did just fine. BECAREFUL what you ask for! By not walking those extra steps, You may not burn enough calories and end up fat and handiecapped! Parish the thought!

rugbymom January 15, 2009, 10:38 AM

Alley, If you had read my entire post you would know that I am walking extra steps. Take your own advice and BE CAREFUL!

Jon January 15, 2009, 10:42 AM

A retail store nearby has spots reserved for expecting moms and parents with small children. It even shows a sillouette of a mom pushing a baby stroller on the sign.

Every time I go to that store (and I don’t use the spot even though I have a 2-yr old), I’ll see an SUV pull into one of those spots. Then the parents and their teenage kids all jump out and go into the store.

I’ve even seen this happen when the parking lot was mostly empty.

Most people aren’t… but there’s plenty of lazy, selfish, rude people out there. Too many in fact.

Who doesn’t know somebody that got a temporary 6 month handicap pass because of say a surgery, and it’s been 5.5 months and they’re feeling great, and they laugh about getting to use the handicap pass. Or their family members use it as well.

It’s pathetic.

peggy January 15, 2009, 10:43 AM

Sometimes people are obese due to a medical problem. Sometimes the more slender population assume that people are obese because they eat too much. Although that is probably true in a lot of instances, its not the case every time. Sorry, I just had to play devils advocate on this one.

catherine January 15, 2009, 10:46 AM

Now the real question…Where would obese mothers with small children park….inside the store itself? 10 years ago when my children were small I never gave a second thought to parking,its just another part of life we deal with. What exactly is the real gripe here….someone else being overweight or you dealing with the kids!

rugbymom January 15, 2009, 10:54 AM

LOL Catherine. Love ur post!

Anonymous January 15, 2009, 10:57 AM

This country is just getting ridiculous about obese people! You are all judgmental assholes,in my opinion! Wow,glad you are so damn perfect!Must be nice up there on your high horses! I’ll bet you think that all obese people smell bad,that all they do is eat day in and day out@!!! What a bunch of ignorant jerks you are!

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