I agree that the practice of hiring a person in a wheelchair is slightly morally despicable and an abuse of the system....but I don't feel like it is abuse to or an unfair treatment of those disabled individuals (unless they do away with the practice of letting disabled to the front of the line because of it.). People are going on like they are being held on leashes and being sold into slavery...Good god, people. They are making $1000+ a day!!!
Those tour "concierges" are getting compensated...and handsomely at that. So it really seems like it is a mutually agreed upon business deal. It is explotative- YES...but so is being an underwear model or a circus act or a Hooter's waitress...but people do it everyday.
Maybe it's just me and my ploclivity to defend the unpopular viewpoint, but I don't think this practice deserves to be seen with the ire that it has. I mean, are we really shocked that rich people will pay ridiculous money for something to prove their superiority? NO! I mean did we think Farnsworth Bentley was being exploited when Puffy Diddy Dirty Money was too good to hold his own umbrealla? NO! We thought, wow what an easy gig! [Tangent: And not to mention he used this opportunity to launch a book, a line of designer umbrellas and a gig on Outkast's The Love Below (a personal favorite!)]
Do I think it's crazy? Absolutely. Do I think it will probably end soon? No. There is absolutely no way to monitor it and I really don't think its that rampant a practice either. It's kinda just the hot shocking story of the moment.
The real injustice in the whole situation, the one that is being ignored because people are focusing on the wheelchair contingent, is that these rich Manhattanites are teaching their kids that money will make you superior to others. But if anything this scenario, at least, means someone in a wheelchair is getting gainful employment that does not exclude, but rather is EXCLUSIVE to them because of their disability. I don't know if that is just me wearing rose colored glasses or not...but it's pretty true when you peel away the layers.
I'm sure I will somehow get people turning up their noses at me for once again taking an abject view as an advocate. [Tangent: But again, I never claimed to be politically correct....at all!] But if anything, I think this whole thing is empowering. The chair holds the power and is something desirable that these 1% want. Maybe it's good for those bratty little kids to be around someone for several hours who has a different lot in life. [Tangent: That would be the greatest silver lining in the situation. All kids could seriously benefit from spending time around someone who is different. Then they won't become ignorant slackjawed adults. They will go from seeing someone in a chair as something to be feared or mocked to someone they had a lot of fun with at an amusement park.] Let's see the brightside and stop assuming all those "poor pathetic cripples" are being taken for granted.
Let the hate mail begin.