Disputes over the offering of seats have been happening for a long time across China. In recent months, the media has reported several incidents of elderly bus passengers forcing young people to give up their seats. One particular case caught everyone’s attention, reports Beijing Today.
The Chengdu Business Daily reported that on September 16 on Bus 49 in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, a 63-year-old man asked a young woman to offer up her seat. The woman refused, so the man sat on her lap. The woman became upset and called him an "old freak".
Instead of giving up, however, the man struck her in the face. He finally stood up after other passengers began to protest for the woman. A similar incident happened earlier in Shijiazhuang, Hebei Province.
It seems that the practice of offering seats to those who need them – such as expectant mothers, the elderly and the disabled – is fast disappearing in China. In a bid to encourage citizens to offer their seats, Beijing set the 22nd day of each month as “Offer Your Seat Day” in 2008. However, as the recent incidents demonstrated, the effect of this “Offer Your Seat Day” in reversing the current trend remains to be seen.