Asking Eric: I think less of my California friend because of his parking scam

Dear Eric: I have an extremely close friend who lives in “parking challenged” Los Angeles and uses a handicap parking placard for pure convenience.

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He was initially issued this permit more than 10 years ago, when he had hip replacement surgery. The permit is automatically reissued to him without the necessity of proving its continued need.

He hasn’t done anything to dispel this, but I find this distasteful and makes me think less of him.

I am a physician, and in my state (Illinois), issuing handicap permits is highly regulated. Should I confront him on this?

– Sticker Shock

Dear Sticker: You should speak up for the sake of your friendship. This is going to keep festering. You may be wondering if there are other areas where you and your friend see morality differently and what that might mean.

This doesn’t have to sever your friendship, but keeping your thoughts inside will only magnify them.

Now, your friend may actually have a reason for continuing to need the permit, which you may not know about. He’s not required to disclose his medical status to you and you shouldn’t press, but be open to the possibility that it’s not just for pure convenience. None of us should ever judge someone for using a handicap permit just because they don’t “look” disabled.

However, if it is for convenience, he may see this as a victimless offense, which isn’t technically true. If he’s in the last handicap-designated space, where does a person with mobility issues park?

You don’t have to get into a political debate with your friend. Some might argue that all this is California’s fault for not properly regulating their parking placards. OK, fine. That’s neither here nor there in your friendship.

We owe it to our friends, and to society, to “call them in” when we see them doing something that might be harmful to themselves or others.

More about California disabled placards: State law requires a signed renewal every six years for DMV-issued permanent placards.

Dear Eric: I did a bad thing – I ghosted a friend.

The friendship made me uncomfortable. I thought he had romantic feelings for me, or maybe he just wanted more from …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment


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