Mrs. Ava Average turned into the crowded parking lot of her local department store and finally found a parking space. After locking her car door, she headed rapidly toward the entrance, intent on finishing up quickly and beating the crowds back onto the congested streets. Like everyone else that day, she had things to do and places to be, with not nearly enough time to get it all done.
But as she neared the section for Handicapped Parking, she watched a sleek, black, powerful latemodel sports car enter the lane and whip into one of the nearby spaces reserved for the handicapped. Who would have a physical problem with walking, and yet be behind the wheel of such a beautiful and active-minded vehicle? Fascinated with the possibilities, she deliberately slowed down and watched to see who exited.
Out of the vehicle jumped a man. Not just any male. An extremely fitlooking, heavily muscled athletic man who looked to be in his late thirties. With absolutely no sign of a physical struggle in getting out, shrugging into his jacket or striding around the back of his sports car.
She stood stock-still in amazement. Glancing down, she saw no handicapped sticker on his license plate. She bent slightly so she could glance into his car to see if there might be a similar placard hanging from the mirror on the dash. Nada. By then the man had noticed her standing midlane, staring at him and his car. He gave her a quick polite nod of the head and started past her.
At that point, something inside of her snapped. Ignoring her normal tendency to ‘just-let-it-beit’s-simply-not-worth-it,’ she stepped forward and stopped him with a request to ask him a question. “Why he had parked in a Handicapped Only space, with no sticker in sight?” With a quick glance at the parking sign, he shrugged and then arrogantly told her, “Ah, it’s all right, I’m just gonna be a few minutes.”
A short conversation ensued, regarding the need of keeping those spaces for those actually handicapped. The man refused to change his viewpoint, so she wisely gave up. Instead, she reached into her bag for her phone, and calmly began photographing him standing near his license plate and the large Handicapped Only sign in front of his car.
“What are you doing?”
“Getting pictures so I can report this car to the store manager and to the police.”
“@#)$%^&$, FINE!!” Glaring resentfully, he then jumped back into his car and with tires squealing, raced away to presumably to find another parking spot.
No loud angry public spectacle, no rudeness, and no violence. Just one woman, quietly standing her ground based on her convictions. The Bible says to not be hateful, but to “stand, and then stand again,” when confronted with things that are obviously wrong.
Never ignore injustice, but don’t lose your cool and act a fool, in order to make your point.
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