For the longest time, while parked at various stores, I have noticed the misuse of “disabled placards.” Most irritating is to witness someone take a disabled person’s parking space, put the placard on their mirror and trot into a store, unencumbered by any noticeable disability.

Evidently, these persons are using a relative’s placard. I suppose it is taxing to walk another 20 feet to enter a store, even though once in the store, they have no problem circumnavigating the entire store.

Invariably, a vehicle will come that has a passenger who suffers from a genuine disability that needs the space just to egress from the vehicle. But the amoral person who got to the space first evidently doesn’t care in the least about this person.

Contrary to the belief of many, “disabled placards” are to be issued to those persons who have legitimate maladies. Those being people who are possibly maimed, paralyzed, crippled and such. Not for the being morbidly obese, elderly, infirmed or just a con artist.

Then, there is the partner in this fraud. It is the physician who knowingly certifies that someone undeserving should receive a “disabled placard.” They attest to the disability of that person in their office, often merely as a favor. These physicians should be heavily fined for falsifying government documents. Such a sad testimony of amorality to people, teaching it is acceptable to lie for personal gain or convenience.

It would serve us all if Aiken Public Safety personnel patrolled the parking lots of our commercial businesses confronting individuals with no apparent malady. If they cannot prove that the placard they are using is theirs, they should be cited and fined to the maximum. This would add a lot of revenue to the Aiken coffers.

You may say that this is a trivial thing, but to the person in need of that space, it isn’t so trivial.

We all have a responsibility to conduct our lives within two distinct types of laws. They, being the law of simple morality and those of civil laws. Then there is of course this – Do we really want to teach that whatever we want to do, we should do regardless of who it inconveniences?

George W. Sargent