The handicapped seats really stir-up a lot of controversy especially in crowded trains such as this morning's. Every single one of the handicapped seats were taken by able-bodied people today. Then, a frail, elderly woman with a cane walked in. appeared to be in her 80s and was visibly having difficulty walking. I was standing in the middle of the train aisle, sandwiched between passengers, and far from the entrance where she entered. But the 8 able-bodied passengers seated in the handicapped seats by the door (2 were from the flip-down seats) did not bother to get up for her.
I started observing their behavior because I found their (lack of) action ridiculous. The elderly woman was shaking from left to right- she CANNOT stand! There were 5 females and 3 males in the 8 handicapped seats (men, I'm not picking on you guys ok?) 6 of them at one point saw the old woman from the corner of their eyes but continued to read their books, magazines, or Blackberries. They even held their reading materials over their eyes as if that justified them not seeing the poor woman. The other 2 were "sleeping" but conveniently woke up at their stop 10 minutes later.
The poor old woman didn't ask for the seats. She just stood there, holding on to dear life, swinging miserably from left to right. Standing passengers around here didn't say anything on her behalf but then again, the 8 passengers seats in the handicapped seats really should have already gotten off for her.
Finally, a man seated 3 rows away got up and helped her to his seat. The behavior of those 8 people was just insanely irresponsible. I don't know how they can live with themselves.