The Matzav Shmoooze: Why Did You Park in the Handicapped Space?


handicapped-parkingDear _____,

Hi. Were you the young guy parked in the handicapped spot on 2nd street, you know the 2 only spots in the parking lot that were both taken and somehow you squeezed in between the two cars with handicapped signs, and you were alone in the car without a handicapped sign ?

Or perhaps you were the one parked without a handicapped sign at the shul when I wanted to go and daven and could not, so I turned around and went home because the only other spot available was 2 blocks away?

Or perhaps you were the one parked in the handicapped spot without a handicapped sign in your car window on Clifton when (excuse me) I had to go to the bathroom and you were parked there illegally so I double parked and blocked you in?

Or perhaps you were the one parked without a handicap sign at Shoprite when the parking lot was so full and I had to park far from the entrance and walked to the store in great pain?

Or perhaps you were the one that parked illegally at the bais medrash were I learn and had to circle around for 20 minutes until a found a legal spot five blocks away, and by the time I got to my chavrusa it was difficult to learn because of the extreme pain in my legs?

Or perhaps you were the one parked illegally the hundreds of times that many other handicapped people were left stranded because you were not considerate and caused immeasurable pain and suffering to all those people left stranded because of you?

By the way, there are many states that allow handicapped people to issue tickets if they can’t park in their spot because of such people.

These inconsiderate chotim will one day also get the opportunity to issue such tickets when someone inconsiderate parks in their handicapped spot.


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  1. I wasn’t aware that someone acting improperly gives you license to be M’kallel him that he should become handicapped…..

  2. “These inconsiderate chotim will one day also get the opportunity to issue such tickets when someone inconsiderate parks in their handicapped spot.”

    We got your point and it is a valid one, but there is no need to Chas V’Sholom wish ill on others.

  3. Dear… the problem with this letter is that those to whom it is for will find some excuse why you don’t mean them. But I hope Im wrong and that people will learn.

  4. A few weeks before Pesach, Rav Pesach Krohn spoke about the impropriety of taking the parking spot of a handicapped individual. He quoted the last Mishna in Pesachim that basically says that if a person makes himself out to be handicapped, when that person isn’t, he/she will eventually become handicapped themselves, Rachmana Letzlan. He said people should be informed of this. Right before Pesach, I saw a young, healthy couple park in a handicapped spot. I told them that it was a handicapped spot, but they didn’t care. I then told them what Rabbi Krohn had said. They brushed me aside and entered the shopping mall. Five minutes later, I passed them by on their way out. The man approached me and asked me if I was giving him a curse. “Chas v’shalom,” I responded. He then told me that he will NEVER EVER park in a handicapped spot again. It worked! Had I told him that “Dina d’malchusa dina” (the law of the land is the law) or that it was a Chillul Hashem, he probably would have ignored me. But when I mentioned that he would get a “Mi sheh’para” based on a Mishna, it finally got to him (in less than 5 minutes), and he realized how wrong he was. Yasher Koach, Rav Pesach Krohn!

  5. Maybe the person who parked there was transporting a handicapped individual. Maybe the person themself was handicapped temporarily. Maybe they just didn’t see the sign. For you to curse them without knowing their situation shows an incredible amount of selfishness. Yours seems to be the only pain that matters. Handicapped parking is a privilege not a right. It is conferred to you out of the kindness of others. Kindness which you decided not to show when you wished a disability upon someone else.

  6. The Handicapped parking is a scam. If a person is truly handicapped they would not be driving. The system has been abused. 95% of the time, you see the individuals that disembark from the car walk perfectly fine. The only reason why I dont park in a handicapped spot is that I dont want to get a ticket. Not because I feel bad for the “handicapped ” person.

  7. Distraught,
    I agreed with everything you said, up until the very last paragraph. You were spot on. Getting your point across perfectly.
    But then you had to add that last paragraph…
    With your vicious hope that other Yidden become handicapped as well, R”L, you discredited your entire complaint, and show your true colors.
    No matter what Chet a Yid performs, our wish is for them to do Teshuva, and if it is Bain Adam L’Chaveiro, to ask Mechila after they’ve realized how uncaring and callouse they have been.
    But we never wish other Yidden harm. We never wish sickness or death on other Yidden.
    You’re way off base, and way out of line.
    I wish you well.

  8. I apologize. I was driving someone else’s car, and forgot to bring along the plackard for my elderly passenger. Please leave me a note with your name, so next time I can apologize directly to you.

  9. Or perhaps i forgot my handicap sign at home, or perhaps i am on hatzolah and was saving someones life, or perhaps there are a million reasons why i may have had an equal(if not better reason) to park there

  10. I was in LKWD over Pesach & was shocked to see numerous times non handicapped people with no tag parking in handicapped spots. One time was at Dr. Shanik’s office where 2 handicapped spots were taken by non handicapped people and I saw a father who had to carry his severely handicapped daughter across the parking lot. I felt so sorry for him. What a shame those people have no respect for others.

  11. They have a problem finding parking in Lakewood as well? What’s the point of moving to Lakewood if there is not enough parking spaces?

  12. I don’t believe that the author was cursing a person who wrongly tales a handicapped spot as much as he was informing him about what is stated near the end of the last Mishnah in Maseches Peah (Chapter 8, Mishnah 9):

    ??? ?? ????? ?? ???, ??? ????, ??? ???, ????? ???? ???? ???, ???? ?? ?? ????? ?? ????? ???? ???, ????? [(???? ??) ???? ??? ??????, ?????] (????? ??) ??? ??? ????.

    And he that is not lame, nor blind, nor limp, yet he makes himself up as one of these,
    He will not die of old age until he is like one of these,
    As it says, “He that seeks evil, it will come to him.” (Proverbs 11:27)
    And it says, “Justice, justice shall you pursue.” (Deuteronomy 16:20)

  13. 1, 2, 5, 12, 16, & 18,
    Boy did you guys miss the point.
    But don’t worry that cop-out will justify you to continue making a chillul Hashem, & make people suffer because you have a disease:
    K. M. S.
    Kimp Meere Syndrome

  14. I’m personally amazed when a group wants to be treated as equal to the rest of society and still demands special privileges.

    I don’t condone the fact that these people parked in handicapped spots but I mean come on. Either you want equality or you don’t. I’ve had my parking spots taken at my condo. It happens. Should we rant about it or accept that Hashem plays an active role in our lives? If someone is parked in your spot, you’re probably being tested for patience and anger.

    Remember, we can’t control other people, only ourselves.

  15. Many parents drive handicapped children around. To add a minute of tzar 2 these parents is un comprehensible. why every also in a rush for everything. BH we can walk. may we know of it no more tzar.

  16. Gentelman, gentelman, every one please relax. No one cursed anyone, it was just a mishna that was quoted not a personnal curse. It was only the Tanaaim not a handicapped person that quoted that curse. So don’t take it to heart, afterall this mishna was written a few thousand years ago and today we are in a more modern era, were many people have personnal feelings that they feel allow much more update thinking. Regarding Hatzalah members: if they are on a call there are means of showing that they are on a call, and if not, then H Base should be informed because of abuse of priviledge. Hatzalah members that abuse there rights (lights and siren) may be suspended or thrown out because they create problems for those on real calls, that is the way it works in hatzalah. If you forgot your sign at home which very rarely would happen with a handicapped person, then you should’nt have a problem, just bring it to court to show that you have one, just like if you got a ticket for not having your registration.As for you the one that thinks it is a scam, be advised, that there are many people that have serious medical issues that are not noticable to the public. Just ask the person who seems to know all about hatzoloh. by the way, it is not just a privilage it is the law. A handicapped person is guarenteed by federal law to certain allowances that others are not. That’s why the offender has to pay $250.00. Like any aveira that one does neged chaveiro, one has to pay. The problem here is, if you caused pain to a handicapped person, you may never know who to ask mechila from. Now that is a real problem.

  17. It all boils down to mentchlichkeit…when you think about the other person and not just yourself. Parking in handicap spaces, parking your car crooked and taking two spots, especially in school parking lots where there are already not enough parking places, especially in the winter, opening your car door and scratching another person’s car and not letting the owner know are all a lack of menchlichkeit. If you are late for work and can’t be bothered to straighten out your car, it’s your problem, no one elses!THINK!

  18. Because a person looks healthy does not mean that he does not qualify for the privilege of having a handicap permit. The ailments and pain can be hidden. I observed my healthy looking 90 year old father tzi lange yurin sit down and then try to get up. The pain he endured was horrifying. Let us not pass judgment on those who have a handicap permit.

    And for those who obtain a handicap permit and are not deserving of it, let G-D judge him.

  19. hi all

    i do have a handicapped placard for my daughter who needs it and over the past few weeks my wife and others driving my daughter parked legally few times in a handicapped spot with the placard displayed in the front window and upon exiting the vehicle she was being yelled at in abusive manner for parking in that spot and she had to answer herself to some guy who apparently thought he is going to be the handicap spot police and only then did he drive off

    please remember treating ppl with respect is also a mitzvah that im sure even rabbi krohn speaks about this all the time

    there is no excuse for anyone to be going around and policing these spots

    awareness is one thing! harassment is another and must stop!!

    and from someone who understands the needs for these spots i tell you this campaign is getting too aggressive

  20. Maybe I work for Hatzolah – Give the benefit of the doubt
    THEREFORE…get a Handicap or Ambulance Sign.

    What a chutzpa the many commentors who have no understanding of the difficulties of a handicap person? Sounds like a bunch of under 40 year olds all venting like babies, “who said the couple was handicap?” Are u able to see a pacemaker or those who are doing dialysis every morning? and if you forgot your handicap sign at home, go home as you would to get your forgotten passport, to call Handicap parking a scam is ridiculous!!! Go volunteer at a Rehab center to understand and feel for handicaps.
    You sound like a generation of ENTITLEMENT BABES who have to wait 10 minutes for a regular spot at Dunkin Donuts….

  21. Email your pictures of perople parked illegal, missing signs and stories and we will post on

    you can also download a windshield notice and place on a window of car in a non confrontational manner. view pictures, articles, videos….

  22. You cannot tell by how a person walks whether or not they are handicapped. Someone with r”l a heart condition amy be able to walk fine, but only for a hundred feet or so. Same for some people with multiple sclerosis.

    A lot of people here are missing the point. No, maybe it’s not nice to talk about other people becoming handicapped, but how often has the writer suffered from the selfishness of people who are blessed by HKBH with health and strength, and take thoughtless advantage of facilities for people who aren’t? There’s a posuk in Avos about not judging someone until you’ve stood in his place. The writer is just trying to get people to imagine their own reaction if they were handicapped, not to “put a Klalah” on them.

  23. the original letter was a response to someone who mentioned R Krohn name to a speech he gave on this issue. it mentions the mishna in Peah that stats a person who acts like a chigur will become one.

    The text should be:

    “But since you quoted Rabbi Krohn, these inconsiderate chotim will one day also get the opportunity to issue such tickets when someone inconsiderate parks in their handicapped spot.”

  24. I’m one of the many people with a placard for handicapped parking that look “normal.” I get lots of disgusted looks from people when they see me walk seemingly easily out of my car. I am young(ish) and have worked on being b’simcha with my nisayon. What they don’t know is that I have terminal cancer. Thank G-d, I don’t often have pain, but I am often weak and out of breath. If I walk across a parking lot, I probably won’t have the energy to take care of the errands that I’m able to do. Not all disabilities are visible.

  25. If there are no spaces open at a shopping mall parking lot except for a handicap space does a handicap person have more of a right to shop than anyone else? If there are 2 spots available of course he should get the handicap one so as not to have to walk far. But with only one spot why should he shop more than anyone else?

  26. “Or perhaps you were the one that parked illegally at the bais medrash were I learn and had to circle around for 20 minutes until a found a legal spot five blocks away, and by the time I got to my chavrusa it was difficult to learn because of the extreme pain in my legs?”

    Grow up! I had to walk farther than that every day to catch a bus to school and, while annoying, was certainly not painful.

    Rav Chaim Ilson, the Rosh HaYeshiva of the now defunct Yeshiva Derech HaTalmud in Eretz Yisrael, is no youngster and biked every day to Yeshiva well over a mile!

  27. When I approached someone delivering packages to a store who had in appropriately parked in a h/c spot, his reply to me was” when I deliver a hundred packages ,that makes me handicapped”. What an insencative comment to make ,especially to one who IS handicapped. How I wish I had the physical ability to do that, but due to current illness I do not. However, sometimes a simple rebuke such as letting them know that they are inconveniencing you, who really needs it, will do the job.

  28. Dear # 31

    The above article was sent in response to your email. You simply posted that original email in your comment#31 for which the author of the article responded to your original email.

    now all can see the real flow of the above “article”

    We asked you many time to join in this effort. You refused.
    you may be entitled to your opinion but the many people who you emailed disagree with you. it does not give you the right to stop this campaign as you have threatened.

  29. A person who is in business saw me today and told me this story.
    They used to have store designer come in to stage the stores layout. It was his job to setup the locations for all displays, how things were positioned and the overall ambiance and experience. He was instrumental setting up stores all over.

    His biggest complaint was all the laws that they had to follow for the disabled. The wider doors, wider isles, the bathroom had to be set up with multiple customized layouts, and even the parking. He just could not handle or understand so many laws and regulations…

    One day he got sick and both his feet were amputated.

    Today he now sees the world from a different perspective and is a very big advocate for making sure places are designed and following all the laws and regulations for accessibility for the disabled.”

  30. How do you know the “healthy” young man really was healthy? What if he has epilepsy, diabetes, gout, or some other issue that may make him look fine on the outside but absolutely be considered handicapped?

    Seriously, be dan l’kaf zechus. It will get you a lot farther than this letter will…

  31. One must have a front mirror tag, diabled plates or permit in order to be authorized to park in a disabled /handicap parking space.

    the person who its registered with must be in the vehicle to park in such a space.

    the stripped line on the side of some disabled parking spaces is not a parking spot for anyone.

    all parking lots must have a ratio at minimum 1 of 25 parking spaces being a disabled handicap parking space.

  32. I naively thought that people saw the article, ads and the blogs and that this phenomenon would stop. I was wrong. So as long as I still see people parking in the Handicap spaces without a placard I think the message hasn’t registered in peoples consciousness yet and still needs to be addressed. No it’s not aggressive.

    Some of my experiences in week before Pesach, ALL with frum people.

    – In Glatt Gourmet/Gingerbread parking lot, all the spaces taken including Handi by non-placard holders. It was difficult for me to make the trip in the first place, but I pushed myself. I drove back home without getting out of car, tired and angry. Mr. Klein the Gingerbread owner is furious at people that do this. His father has a placard, he would probably work with you in you have an initiative to get store owners involved like by asking/reminding customers not to park illegally..

    – Was parked in Shoprite plaza in Handi space in front of Judaica store. Middle aged lady parks in space next to me, no placard. Well dressed lady driving a Lexus. Did she think it was beneath her to park further?

    – Circa parking lot in front of cleaners.

    – NPGS James, there is only ONE Handi space for some reason. Don’t think that’s technically proper. When I arrived one vehicle was parked in the spot legally. I parked next to it on an X. A orange one, not the the blue lines for van access which for some reason isn’t there. Eventually the car left and immediately a van pulls in illegally. Mother probably thought she was entitled to space since she had large young brood with her. Is there a stare I could master? That look that will get the message across? My wife and I pointedly looked at her, she was either oblivious or couldn’t care less.

    – Shoprite plaza in front of Shoprite. Young couple in early twenties happily parked illegally couldn’t care less about world. Probably thinking lot was empty with plenty of Handi spaces to spare..

    When I see people parking illegally I am tempted to ask them for the $250 they would have to pay in fine. Why pay it to the police when I could use it for my medical expenses.

    Can we get police enforcement? This is crucial. If I call police will they respond? Will they fine?

    We should probably also work on having the law in NJ also allow citizens to ticket, if I understood what you wrote.

    Maybe the campaign should have the Rabbonim you quoted and the other Poskim and Rabbonim in town to sign a letter saying that it is Assur and illegal, and that one is ALLOWED to call the police and they WILL be fined and JAIL with repeat offender. Once they are forewarned and know that we will seriously be calling police and people start getting fines, the message will be loud and clear.

    I have a list (a few years old) of all the shuls and contact names and numbers. Let’s get a Community wide Ahavas Yisroel campaign going this sefirah period.

  33. # 38, I must say say your blog name says alot about you. It really is an “Issur” to think,talk or let alone write what you did. Perhaps you may become ‘Mutter” if you were to wake up (“Grow up”) to what all this is about. We are afterall talking about handicapped people that can not walk far. They have great difficulties in what you take for granted. Of course you can walk a few blocks if you can’t find a spot because you are not; A Diabetic with neuropathy or have a heart condition with perhaps a pace maker installed in your chest, or painful arthritis in your ankles that cause you excruiating pain or knees whose cartilage is all but gone or a spinal disorder or any of the hundreds of reasons why the Motor vehicle Department saw fit to authorize that person and that person alone the right to a parking spot designated only for him and never never for those that B”H are free of such issues. As to your Bli Ayin Hora healthy Rosh Yeshiva, I only hope for your sake that he never sees this blog that you wrote, because
    he just may………………………………

  34. My five year old son has a permanent ileostomy and many times the Ostomy pouch falls off, leaks, opens, spills. I had a handicap permit for two years so I could park and run to take care of him when needed immediately as needed. People would question and judge me that I used the permit even when not with him. Yes, taking care of a not well child, constantly going to doctors and hospitals and therapists and medical supply stores, while being up all night with him, while working full time to make ends meet, while trying to also take care of my older son….it’s exhausting and draining, physically and mentally and emotionally and sometimes even spiritually. Can you forgive me for wanting to park closer to a store or to my work when I could barely move?! Or do you want to rejoice with the DMV doctor who said my son is not handicapped, that he could walk (not when the pouch is leaking or falling off! Not when he’s exhausted from appointments, doctors, therapy, IV hydrations!) that he looks fine and doesn’t look handicapped so she is recommending that he not have the permit renewed. Well, now I don’t ‘abuse’ the permit and I also NEVER JUDGE WHAT CANNOT/MAY NOT BE OBVIOUS

  35. My husband once went to a chassina very late and parked in a handicap spot. Lo and behold he broke his leg while dancing!- and blamed himself for the ayin hara and possible chillul Hashem.

  36. Don’t worry. I will ban all cars in the near future. Only bycicles will be allowed in America. We will have special double bikes for all our Gay couples. I WILL be President very soon.

  37. One time, oh man, one time there was this car, andit was pulled in a spit for crippled people. Well, there was a lady that got out and was walking around the parking lot talking on her cell. Then there’s this old couple who drove up to her and was like Are you leaving soon?
    So she flipped them the bird and walked the other way.