City Desk

Get (Up) On The Bus

Greater Greater Washington's David Alpert has advice on when to give up your seat on Metro or the bus in a lengthy post citing the observations of a pregnant woman, and another woman who was berated for not getting up:

Folks, many people don't want to go around loudly asking others to give up seats. If you see someone who is less physically able than yourself on the bus, please volunteer the seat. If someone asks you to give up a seat or move over to accommodate someone, please cheerily agree.

In particular, the row of seats nearest the door is reserved by law for seniors and persons with disabilities when necessary. If you're in one of those, it's extra important to give up your seat.

Shorter, if somewhat less polite, version: sitting down on public transit isn't an inalienable right for most of us able-bodied young folks. So get up!

Photo by Mike Hicks

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  • Anon

    I have a back injury from being rear-ended a year and a half ago. It still hurts, particularly from standing for long periods, walking, and depending on how I am sitting. I am tall. The normal seats on metro buses don't give me the leg room to shift so I'm not sitting hurting my back, so, if one is available, I sit in the priority seats. I am certainly not breaking any rules when I do so–I was recently issued a metro disability card based on my injury. Just because I look able-bodied does not mean I am, and it is frustrating when someone starts yelling at me that I need to move because the person who just came on the bus is a senior citizen, despite there being a free priority seat to either side of me and another 50% of them still free too.