Thursday, February 14, 2008

Cyclist’s Bill of Rights



Most people looking at this film today would probably think that our present day congested, but reasonably orderly, streets have improved, that the chaos of this old street scene has been “cleaned up.” But what has been lost? Our streets in the United States are no longer the living, breathing, admittedly chaotic spaces they once were (Or still are in many parts of the world—witness this video of a present day intersection in India). Instead, the typical U.S. street is a monolithic traffic sewer, a blighted corridor with the only purpose being moving as many cars as fast as possible.

Today, all the pedestrians in this old film would be cited for jaywalking, the cyclists for “impeding traffic”, and the various equestrians and carriages would be harassed by the entitled, luxury car driving hordes. And while San Francisco still has its trolleys, most cities, including Los Angeles, ripped up the tracks in the 1950s.

This unquestioned idea that our streets are for cars not people would be extremely offensive to our founding fathers. Since it costs, on average, $8,000 a year to own and maintain an automobile this discrimination amounts to an unfair tax and worse, an infringement of our right to traverse public space.

This is why we need to assert our rights. This is why we need a Cyclist’s Bill of Rights.

4 comments:

Tyler said...

FRIDAY NIGHT RIDE TOMORROW DON'T FORGET DON'T WUSE OUT YOU ALL KNOW THE TIME AND PALCE SO BE THERE

clintpatty said...

We don't know the route, advertised pace, stops, etc. But I'll prolly be at food not bombs anyway.

Tyler said...

oh clint way to much planing!!! formal organization has never been my strong point I like to play it by ear but if anyone shows we will probably make a stop for beer somewhere and possibly dinner....oh yeah Jim you are required to be there by my orders no excesses maybe we can go for pizza at that new place by the court house if you don't see me outside tomorrow that means I am down stairs at the voodoo lounge drinking pints of guiness so come down stairs and find me and for all concerned I am planing a large well organized alley cat race for sunday March 9, 2008 with beer and food after the race I am working out the details I will keep everyone informed...oh yes I plan to have winners for single/fixed, gear road bikes, geared mountains bikes so no excuses for not racing are acceptable there will also be skid stop contest after the race

Tyler said...

Well when the friday night ride become a proirity that can be squeezed into everyone's obviously busy schedules that hold higher precidence than riding there bike's let me me know until then the friday night ride will just be a dead ideal wait for it's second coming