Letter to the Editor: I Am a Lycra-Wearing Menace to Society!

Comments

1

The message of this letter is spot-on, but allow me to quibble in an attempt to add to it. “Policy makers”, sure. Kinda. But really the blame is with voters. That is, with how today’s voters have grown up in a society where the world places the car so central, where it is so worshipped that (at least until the younger generation) the model of car a person drives is even one of the primary ways to describe “who” a person is. To many, a person’s car is an inextricable part of who they are. Not just within car culture, but within dominant American culture. Gross, right? But the bicycle model a person chooses? Lol. Which walking shoes you wear? LOLOLOL. A majority of voters today feel personally wounded if a policy maker makes a decision (that comes across as) favoring anything over cars.

2

"I have the audacity to believe that I have as much right to the road as a car and should not have to fear death every time I ride..."

Nice fucking strawman. We don't hate you because you believe you have the right to share the road with cars, we hate you because YOU BREAK TRAFFIC LAWS AND RUN DOWN PEDESTRIANS.

You. Have. To. Obey. The. Law.

3

Yeah, not to perpetuate the fight too much @2, but drivers and peds Have. To. Follow. The. Law. Too.
Way too many times on my daily commute (by bike), I see drivers speed up to blow a red because it just changed and they just got out of traffic coming off I5. Or they make a right without signaling. Or they park in the bike lane. Or they speed.
Yeah, I've done similar things while driving (spoiler alert: I own and drive a car too.) and while on my bike. It happens and we do stupid shit. All. Of. Us. So instead of blaming bikers for traffic woes because they're doing things that are illegal, take a look at your driving habits.

You. Have. To. Obey. The. Law.

4

Come down and try biking like a dickhole in Eugene. Bikes are an accepted part of traffic around here and everyone expects them - to bike as everyone drives. The unexpected biker down here is a hobo behind a shopping cart jaywalking for no damn reason, not the Seattle dickholes who bike worse than stunt-ass sportbike riders.

Oh wait, Eugene isn't overflowing with people and ridiculous economic disparity at every corner, maybe that's why it's nicer.

5

@3: "...or they park in the bike lane."

Just where are cars supposed to park rather than against the curb? Out in the middle of the street?

8

Why don't you both shut up? Ped forever.

9

I'd like to know what laws @2 thinks cyclists are breaking; most drivers throw a fit when they see cyclists doing perfectly legal things like riding on the road two abreast (RCW 46.61.770).

And cyclists running down pedestrians? Seriously??? I'm sure it happens once in a blue moon - and when it does, there's probably a fair chance it was the pedestrians fault (jaywalking, etc.). Meanwhile, drivers cutting off pedestrians in crosswalks is a minute-by-minute occurrance all over Seattle. Where's @2's outrage over that?

10

@5,

He's not talking about cars parked legally against the curb. He's talking about idjits who actually park and/or idle in the bike lane. Like these folks

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzE-IMaegzQ

11

Vancouver Canada has bike lanes. Bike routes cross the entire city. Many bitched about the transition but it all has calmed down. Cars and bikes get to where they are going in designated lanes and a tiny percent of jerk vehicle drivers and radical bike riders act like assholes and create a giant shit-storm while everyone else just moves on.
Having said that, I think there is more of a responsibility now for vehicle drivers to handle themselves according to road rules, the ones they have been bending and breaking for years.
In British Colombia there are 950 crashes a day caused by bad driving being on the rise.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/icbc-2017-crashes-1.4750481

I can only assume it is similar everywhere else. A good reason to divide Bikes from vehicles with lanes and get used to it.

12

No this is awful. I read this last night and despaired for humanity. It's simply not possible (and I would argue not desirable) to have separated bike infrastructure everywhere. I know this puts me at odds with the current "all ages and all abilities" zeitgeist of the "cycling community"

...but eventually every bike lane ends and a cyclist has to be able to negotiate a place in the rest of traffic. That takes a little skill, empathy, and maturity. I see no evidence of any of those in this post.

Would I love it if there were fewer jerk motorists? Sure! But there was a time when Seattle worked just as the CHZA @4 describes Eugene. It really did.

I'm not advocating being meek and rolling over for Auto-centrism, but self proclaiming oneself a menace is irony lost - even on many who might otherwise support your cause.

13

All sorts of amazing things could happen with a city designed from scratch. However, once a city has been developed without bicycles in the plan, the only practical thing to do is to integrate bikes with cars on the same road. We need three things. 1) Drivers need to be trained to open the car door using their right hand. This forces one to look out the side window. 2) Stop signs should be yield signs to cyclists so that it would be practical to ride on side roads and still maintain a reasonable speed for commuting. 3) whenever possible, make the right hand, through lane three feet wider. Do not mark it off, but just leave room for bikes.

Respect is key. Lane splitting and ignoring traffic signals gives cyclists a bad reputation. If we want to be taken seriously, we need to be serious.