I have one question for all those who are attacking Jason Singleton: How long do YOU believe citizens should have to become compliant with the law before they're held accountable? Six months? A year? Five years?
The ADA was passed in 1990. That means all of these businesses have had TWENTY-THREE YEARS in which to make the changes that would bring them in line with the law. Isn't two decades enough time for these business to make the necessary adaptations?
My best friend's daughter is one of the business owners who was sued by a client of Jason Singleton's. (I shouldn't have to point this out, but I will: it's not Mr. Singleton who is suing these businesses, but the clients who hire him. Shouldn't those clients be the ones held responsible for these suits?) Although I love my friend, one of the things she said to me was, "They should give people time to make their business accessible." She also said the law was too complex, and they keep changing it, so people shouldn't be expected to understand the law and obey it. But isn't two decades enough time for that?
Seems to me that, in this case, too many people believe THEY should be somehow exempt from the law. Jason Singleton has become the scapegoat for their refusal to acknowledge their legal responsibility. Instead of obeying the law, it's easier to point the finger at the man who is HIRED BY CLIENTS to uphold their civil rights.
My friend's daughter was only in grade school when the ADA was passed, so much as it pains me to say it, she and her husband should have made a point to be aware of their responsibilities under the law BEFORE they opened their business. If they found the law too difficult to understand, they should have consulted an attorney at the time they opened their business and paid him for a consultation. After all, that's what attorneys are for. And if you don't have the money to do that, then maybe you should wait until you've saved enough to cover all your expenses BEFORE you open your doors. Owning a small business doesn't automatically give you a 'Get Out of Jail Free" card.
We all want small businesses to thrive. However, small business owners have the same responsibility under that law as anyone else. These business owners had more than two decades to make the necessary adaptation. That's ample time, in my opinion. Time for all you whiners to take responsibility for your own failure to obey the law.
Don't want to be sued? You've had twenty-three years to get in line with the law. Seriously, how can anyone blame an attorney for doing his job when they can't be bothered to live up to their own legal responsibility? I'm sure Jason Singleton is slime, because I've yet to meet an attorney who wasn't, but whether he's an angel or a demon, he's still just a guy doing the job he's been hired to do.
Maybe if all you small business owners had done YOUR job by obeying the ADA sometime over the past two decades, you wouldn't find yourself on the wrong end of a civil suit now.
In Print This Week:
Sep 11, 2014
vol XXV issue 37
The North Coast Journal Weekly
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