After a slow start to the day, Tom Harris has managed to light my blue touchpaper. And that was before he accused me of being a fucking Tory**.
In fact, I was fairly relaxed about his analysis of the titular issue, until this:
I don’t want to encourage or exacerbate our transition to a selfish*** society by behaving like those I see arrogantly manoeuvring their work vans and two-seater sports cars over the “pram” logo painted on the monoblock.
A comment preceded by the statement:
That’s not me being sanctimonious
ROFL. Oh yes it is Tom.
In any case, did no-one ever convey their offspring round in a work van or a two-seater sports car? Hmm?
So what about this question of parent and child parking?
Well, of course, there are arguments from several quarters.
Parents find them convenient – of course they do. Anyone would find them convenient. They’re close to the store and wider than regular parking spaces.
Women whose hitherto detectable spatial awareness was last seen in a puddle on a delivery room floor find them invaluable, considering that the arrival of their first born apparently mandated a car the size of Leicestershire.
And there are, perhaps, valid points about it being difficult to install and remove children in normal width spaces.
None of this, however, justifies the spaces being right by the store-front. All of these child-friendliness arguments work just as well if you put the P&C spaces right at the back of the car park. Such car-parks almost always have pedestrian gang ways. And supermarkets have trolleys.
No, the reason these spaces exist and are right in front of the stores is simply this: Parents spend a fortune in the sort of establishments that have P&C parking spaces, so supermarkets, leisure parks etc have no problem affording this demographic special treatment.
Accordingly, they are a commercial enticement, not the fulfilment of a civic good, which is what disabled spaces are.
So, frankly, if I want to park in a P&C space, be it because I’m a lazy twat or because I don’t want my pride & joy dinged by fuckwits, I will. And thanks to consumer choice, I think there’s a pretty strong commercial enticement for the retailer not to slap a £60 ticket on my car.
I would never, on the other hand, park in a disabled space, and would expect to be ticketed if I did.
** Okay, I admit it, I am a Tory. Unlike the Conservative Party.
*** He’s right, I am selfish. Although I didn’t know it until someone scratched the word into the boot-lid of my BMW. And no, you cunts, it wasn’t parked in a P&C space at the time :o(