I agree with Charlotte’s post about the erosion of manners in society, and was struck by this personally when I took the metro with my toddler on Friday evening. As everyone at IWF knows, I am nine months pregnant. I’m at that point when there is no way that someone could look at me and not be sure or not want to offend me by implying I’m pregnant by offering me their seat. And yet there I was on a moderately crowded metro car standing in the middle of 8 seats that are supposedly reserved for the disabled-three of them occupied by adult men-and no one offered me a seat.
Now, I was perfectly fine standing. And pregnancy, of course, is not an actual disability so probably no one was even technically breaking the rules in not giving up their seat. But it did amaze me that no one thought it appropriate to make the gesture. As a former regular bus rider, I often gave up my seat for a person carrying a baby or an elderly person, etc. It just seems like the natural thing to do.
IWF has held events to discuss the topic of whether chivalry is dead. A ride on the DC Metro system certainly suggests that if it’s not dead, it’s certainly in poor health.