Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Handicapped, Handicapable, What Appears As Ignorance At First Glance Isn't So Much

A bank in Florida refused to cash a check for an armless man because he could not provide a thumbprint.

"They looked at my prosthetic hands and the teller said, 'Well, obviously you can't give us a thumbprint'," Steve Valdez told CNN on Wednesday.

But he said the Bank of America Corp branch in downtown Tampa, Florida, still insisted on a thumbprint identification for him to cash a check drawn on his wife's account at the bank, even though he showed them two photo IDs.

In the incident last week, a bank supervisor told Valdez he could only cash the check without a thumbprint if he brought his wife in with him or he opened an account with them.

"I told them I neither wanted an account with them and couldn't bring my wife in because she was nowhere close by," Valdez told CNN.

Bank of America said in a statement cited by CNN: "While the thumbprint is a requirement for those who don't have accounts, the bank should have made accommodations."

Valdez said his treatment by the bank violated the U.S. Americans with Disability Act requiring institutions to provide reasonable accommodation to disabled persons.

So then it's true? Handicapped people are absolutely not capable of committing any sort of money related crimes such as check fraud? There's no possible way that this man could have been trying to commit any crime whatsoever?

I'm not saying the bank was totally right so don't get me wrong. What I am saying is that in this modern world, where identity and money related frauds cost billions of dollars every year, should we really be making random exceptions for anybody, handicapped or not? Sometimes unexpected and unfortunate things happen that point out a flaw in the system. This doesn't mean that the system is totally wrong, it means that no planner is perfect. The man shouldn't have gotten a free pass for not having a thumb. Criminals can be handicapped too and even though I can walk, a man in a wheelchair can just as easily steal my identity as a fully upright walking man.


Anonymous said...

I can't tell you how many times I've been ripped off by thumbless felons passing bad checks. Finally somebody is making a stand.

Dillinger said...

Sarcasm noted. Occasionally something small irritates me and it's short enough I can quickly address it. Political correctness. A handicap isn't going to stop some people from exploiting a weakness in the form on political correct kindness. Just presenting another side of it.