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Old 02-06-06, 03:11 AM   #1
oilfreeandhappy
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Love and Tolerance for the Elderly/Handicapped

We should be thankful for healthy bodies, and that we can commute by bicycle. We should also go out of our way to make friends with the elderly and handicapped who aren't so lucky. In our society, elderly are often left out and alone. It's easy for us to sit back and criticize motorists, but the fact of the matter, is that many of these people have no choice.
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Old 02-06-06, 05:02 AM   #2
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whats with the "we should"?.... how about "we should" have our own opinions
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Old 02-06-06, 05:48 AM   #3
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We just found out my mother has a degenerative, neurological disease, but before the diagnosis, she was falling in public, and never once did anyone ever stop to help her get up off the ground. My father has Parkinson's and he said he would fall and lay on the sidewalk and people would just pass him. My mom would have to run over and help him get up. Pathetic.

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Old 02-06-06, 08:09 AM   #4
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When a society is based upon instant gratification and push-button living for some crazy reason that society doesn't value wisdom anymore.

koffee- It's shocking how people can act after years of being boxed off from human interaction. I mean, people get in a car to go to their cubicle, then get back in their car to go home or to the store. It still doesn't excuse anything though.
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Old 02-06-06, 08:10 AM   #5
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Oh yeah, I actually dumped a girl because she told me she laughed at a guy trying to get over a stick in a wheelchair as she drove by. I asked her if she stopped to help him and she just looked at me mystified. Needless to say that was the last time we saw each other.
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Old 02-06-06, 08:57 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by BeTheChange
When a society is based upon instant gratification and push-button living for some crazy reason that society doesn't value wisdom anymore.

koffee- It's shocking how people can act after years of being boxed off from human interaction. I mean, people get in a car to go to their cubicle, then get back in their car to go home or to the store, or ride a bike with earphones listening to music It still doesn't excuse anything though.
Fixed.

I agree with the OP. One of the reasons my wife married me (so she says) is that I always help the proverbial little old lady to cross the street. Guess what, folks, if you're lucky, that's YOU one day struggling with the problems of advanced age.
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Old 02-06-06, 09:09 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by koffee brown
We just found out my mother has a degenerative, neurological disease, but before the diagnosis, she was falling in public, and never once did anyone ever stop to help her get up off the ground. My father has Parkinson's and he said he would fall and lay on the sidewalk and people would just pass him. My mom would have to run over and help him get up. Pathetic.

Koffee
People are less likely to help others when there are many people around. It enables them to minimize personal responsibility for helping - "all these people around, someone else will help". Not that it's right, just an unfortunate circumstance of human social intereactions. People need to consciously remind themselves to get involved, especially when there are many people present. They should ask themselves, "What would I want if my mother or father where lying on the sidewalk? Would I want people stepping over them, or helping them?"
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Old 02-06-06, 09:25 AM   #8
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That's bad karma to ignore elderly folks that need help. My grandfather will be 98 this year and he would be dead right now if it wasn't for his former neighbors in Falls Church, VA. I just think many people are scared and do not know how to act around older people. Our society tends to marginalize them. I also agree with ajay677 that diffusion of responsibility contributes to the problem.
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Old 02-06-06, 10:39 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by jimmuter
I just think many people are scared and do not know how to act around older people. Our society tends to marginalize them.
I agree. One of the best things that happened to me in high school was to get put in close contact with a guy with MS for a couple of years. We were both in the same classes a lot, and I wound up helping him out a lot, to the extent of helping him into the bathroom stall and lifting him sometimes when needed. Sad to say he died not many years afterwards, but as a result of knowing him, I don't have that tendency to flinch away from people in wheelchairs that I know a lot of people do. I also looked after my feeble grandmother many times while the rest of the family worked on the farm.

The CEO of the company I work for is in a wheelchair, when I interviewed many years ago (before he had risen so far) I was well served by being able to talk to him no differently than anyone else at the table.
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Old 02-06-06, 11:04 AM   #10
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My youngest brother drowned at 2 yrs and was resucitated with extreme brain injury. He lived to 20 years old. In all that time I have been apalled at how our society treats the handicapped. You may look at the handicapped strange but remember you or one of your loved ones can easily become handicapped. Anyhow, this issue has a special meaning for me.

It is depressing how a majority of us treat the elderly. At the very least I say hello and have a chat with persons on my commute.
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Old 02-06-06, 11:09 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koffee brown
We just found out my mother has a degenerative, neurological disease, but before the diagnosis, she was falling in public, and never once did anyone ever stop to help her get up off the ground. My father has Parkinson's and he said he would fall and lay on the sidewalk and people would just pass him. My mom would have to run over and help him get up. Pathetic.
I work in a public building and we are prohibited from helping people for legal reasons. The basic logic is that we do not have medical training and could do more harm than good. If there is an incident (occurs once in awhile), we notify managment and call 911.

We have had elderly patrons fall and not been able to help them get back up even when they ask specifically. The concern is that they may have broken/injured something without necessarily knowing it, so we still have to call 911.

It is sad, but I should say that the reason we have this policy is that there have been instances in the past where well-intentioned assistance resulted in an expensive lawsuit.
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Old 02-06-06, 11:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay677
People are less likely to help others when there are many people around. It enables them to minimize personal responsibility for helping - "all these people around, someone else will help". Not that it's right, just an unfortunate circumstance of human social intereactions.
there's actually a psychological term for this phenomenon --- the bystander effect. I forgot who came up with it but being a sociology major (a study which has a lot of elements of psychology), I've read about this many times.
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Old 02-06-06, 11:51 AM   #13
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It's easy for us to sit back and criticize motorists, but the fact of the matter, is that many of these people have no choice.
Many, but not most. Bikes and walking for long distances are not good transportation solutions for a lot of elderly people or people with severe physical disabilities.

But I have less sympathy for the overweight 50-year-old who just thinks that exercise is for health clubs (that they don't go to) and not to be done on public roads.
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Old 02-06-06, 11:54 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by banerjek
I work in a public building and we are prohibited from helping people for legal reasons. The basic logic is that we do not have medical training and could do more harm than good. If there is an incident (occurs once in awhile), we notify managment and call 911.

We have had elderly patrons fall and not been able to help them get back up even when they ask specifically. The concern is that they may have broken/injured something without necessarily knowing it, so we still have to call 911.

It is sad, but I should say that the reason we have this policy is that there have been instances in the past where well-intentioned assistance resulted in an expensive lawsuit.

I was under the impression that the good samaritan law protects you in the event someone you help gets sue-happy. I could be wrong though. My company actually requires us to become first-aid and cpr certified so (and again, I could be wrong on this too) we are legally obligated to help others in the event of an accident.
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Old 02-06-06, 12:01 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by banerjek
I work in a public building and we are prohibited from helping people for legal reasons. The basic logic is that we do not have medical training and could do more harm than good. If there is an incident (occurs once in awhile), we notify managment and call 911.

We have had elderly patrons fall and not been able to help them get back up even when they ask specifically. The concern is that they may have broken/injured something without necessarily knowing it, so we still have to call 911.

It is sad, but I should say that the reason we have this policy is that there have been instances in the past where well-intentioned assistance resulted in an expensive lawsuit.
Maybe we can start by IDing and publicising the problem. Some have said we have a government of the lawyers, by the lawyers and for the lawyers. Something is very biased that over 90% of congress is lawyers. Here is a discrimination you won't see picked up by the NY post or LA times.

A good step would be explaining this policy to those who need help and ask them to spread the word so laws can be changed and people don't have to take a financial hit just to be human. gueesh, this is an enlightened society???...
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Old 02-06-06, 12:28 PM   #16
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Maybe we can start by IDing and publicising the problem. Some have said we have a government of the lawyers, by the lawyers and for the lawyers. Something is very biased that over 90% of congress is lawyers.
Where I live, our state legislature contains a suprising number of "citizen" politicians. This causes real problems because they just pass whatever they want without enough regard for what is consistent with previous legislation and the constitution. Throw in the citizen initiatives that are won and lost on slogans designed to appeal to people who know nothing about policy and it creates some huge legal headaches.

An amazing percentage of our laws get thrown out as unconstitutional. Lawyers might not have the most popular profession, but it might not be such a bad idea to have legal experts craft the laws.

I am not certain how the good samaritan laws work out where I am. I think it's really bad that people are afraid of helping. I saw a woman get hit by a car last month in a busy intersection, and no one except for the driver who hit her helped me keep people from driving over her while the ambulance was on its way or offerred any type of assistance. Visibility was terrible, and people who didn't realize why I was in the middle of street were yelling at me to get out of the way.
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Old 02-06-06, 12:56 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by banerjek
I work in a public building and we are prohibited from helping people for legal reasons. The basic logic is that we do not have medical training and could do more harm than good. If there is an incident (occurs once in awhile), we notify managment and call 911.
What a bunch of carp (not you, the policy). I'd say "fine, you've told me I'm not allowed to do it, so YOU are indemnified. I consider myself off the clock for this 15 seconds while I'm helping this guy up, so I'm not "at work" - I'll take off my security badge and put it in my pocket if that's how you like it. if the guy sues, he sues me alone."

I guess I can understand the company trying to protect themselves, they're required to. But they can't force me to be an a$$hole.
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Old 02-06-06, 02:34 PM   #18
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I might be wrong, but as I know Good Samaritan law is not a federal law, and not all states adopted such law. Although, I would not think about that if someone needs help. If someone is bleeding I'd stop bleeding first, before calling 911. Such skills are mandatory for getting driver license in my country, and also children are taught CPR and injury/poisoning treatment at school.
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Old 02-06-06, 02:46 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajay677
People are less likely to help others when there are many people around. It enables them to minimize personal responsibility for helping - "all these people around, someone else will help". Not that it's right, just an unfortunate circumstance of human social intereactions. People need to consciously remind themselves to get involved, especially when there are many people present. They should ask themselves, "What would I want if my mother or father where lying on the sidewalk? Would I want people stepping over them, or helping them?"
True. Also, people are reluctant to help when they believe that they are not qualified or competent. This is similar to what jimmuter said:

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmuter
I just think many people are scared and do not know how to act around older people.
And i also agree with ItsJustMe that education and experience will help people feel more competent and comfortable when they see those who need help:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ItsJustMe
One of the best things that happened to me in high school was to get put in close contact with a guy with MS for a couple of years. We were both in the same classes a lot, and I wound up helping him out a lot, to the extent of helping him into the bathroom stall and lifting him sometimes when needed. Sad to say he died not many years afterwards, but as a result of knowing him, I don't have that tendency to flinch away from people in wheelchairs that I know a lot of people do.
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Old 02-07-06, 09:48 AM   #20
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I have spent the last 5 years as a personal attendant for the ill and elderly. One of my jobs is to keep them from falling. If they are falling anyway to ease the fall but not to stop it. Trying to stop a fall could hurt you (our companys main source of lost time accidents) and the client (torn joints and ripped fragile skin). Once down to just leave them there . Make them comfortable without moving them, let them know someone is with them and help is on the way, call 911 - hospital staff - your employer - family . . . Some doctors are happy to have someone like me there until the paramedics arrive. The EMTs are trained to make the judgement calls and to transport safely. The doctor may be the best brain surgeon in the world but not know squat about emergency care.
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Old 02-07-06, 11:09 AM   #21
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After you spend a couple months in a wheelchair, then on crutches, then with a cane, it becomes apparent that people don't give two beans about the handicapped. God save you if you're old AND handicapped.
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Old 02-07-06, 11:20 AM   #22
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When I was 40 I felt like I was in the best shape I'd ever been. There were times on the bike I actually felt superhuman. Now, only 6 years later, little aches and complaints creep in from time to time.

I'm beginning to think I'm not exempt from the effects of aging...

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Old 02-07-06, 11:34 AM   #23
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Old 02-07-06, 02:10 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koffee brown
We just found out my mother has a degenerative, neurological disease, but before the diagnosis, she was falling in public, and never once did anyone ever stop to help her get up off the ground. My father has Parkinson's and he said he would fall and lay on the sidewalk and people would just pass him. My mom would have to run over and help him get up. Pathetic.

Koffee
That is sad and I am sorry Koffee. I don't know where this happened, but I would guess it is a larger city. Studies have shown that the more people are present, the LESS likely it is that someone in need will recieve help from a random stranger. I am pretty sure that someone laying on the ground would be noticed here and help would be offered by most, but one never knows. All we can do is our part to retain what's left of our humanity and caring for one another.
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Old 02-07-06, 05:50 PM   #25
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I work in a public building and we are prohibited from helping people for legal reasons. The basic logic is that we do not have medical training and could do more harm than good. If there is an incident (occurs once in awhile), we notify managment and call 911.

We have had elderly patrons fall and not been able to help them get back up even when they ask specifically. The concern is that they may have broken/injured something without necessarily knowing it, so we still have to call 911.

It is sad, but I should say that the reason we have this policy is that there have been instances in the past where well-intentioned assistance resulted in an expensive lawsuit.
That is crap.

If an elderly person fell, and you cannot help, then you call 911 and you SIT with them and help them as best as you can until the paramedics get there. If they get up on their own, then whatever damage results will be on them. That would be an example of doing the minimum.

Most states DO have a "Good Samaritan" law. I work in a profession where there is a high incidence of accidents, injury and sometimes death. In every manual for every certification, they emphasize that you do the best you can when someone's been hurt- give assistance according to how much training you have, call 911 (first), check the scene (second), and attend to the victim (third). It's so basic, it's not funny. If someone falls, you don't just WALK AROUND THEM. If your company advocates leaving someone in need on the ground and just keep on walking, they are ethically bankrupt and immoral. Someone needs help, you give it. The Good Samaritan laws protect you from rendering aid. If you render aid and it's refused, then WALK. But don't just walk just because you're afraid of legal ramifications.

Now that's just dumb (not you... your company).

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