Blinded By Their Prejudice

| Working | May 25, 2017

(My beloved car that my husband and I share is dying, and my parents are looking to upgrade. We all go car shopping together. My father is with us, and is a rather obviously blind man with a guide dog.)

Salesman #1: “So, what can I do for you folks?”

Mom: “Well, we were thinking of getting a Mercedes SUV. And my daughter is looking to replace her car with something affordable. So you can either show them a car they like in their price range, or convince me and my husband to buy the new SUV and sell my daughter our old car.”

Salesman #1: *laughs* “Let me get someone who specializes in what you need.”

(Ten minutes pass.)

Salesman #2: “So, I hear you two kids are looking for an economy car?”

Mom: “Or, you could sell me a brand new Mercedes…”

(Salesman #2 looks at her strangely, then proceeds to show me and my husband the cheapest used car on the lot. After we say a few times that we were looking for something a little nicer, the salesman wanders off, never to return. As the four of us leave, we happen to pass the salesman who first helped us, sitting in his office.)

Salesman #1: “Did you folks find what you wanted?”

Mom: “Well, no… You guys never showed us the high-end SUV we were looking for.”

Me: “And I was only shown the one cheapest car on the lot. I was looking for something affordable, but…”

Salesman #1: “Look, we aren’t going to be able to do financing for anything more that that for folks in your situation.”

Me: “Our situation?”

Salesman #1: “If a bank isn’t going to approve a loan, we can’t show you—”

Me: “Why do you think a bank wouldn’t approve a loan?”

Mom: “You didn’t even ask us anything?”

Salesman #1: “Well, for folks on disability benefits…”

(My dad, who is not much of a talker, finally pipes up.)

Dad: “What, you think my daughter is disabled?”

(The salesman looked at him, confused. He continued to look confused as we left. I don’t think it ever occurred to him that blind people can have jobs — and so can their offspring!)

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