Monday, July 16, 2007

Can't we all just get along?

There was a recent editorial in the local paper on biking. I'll quote it below because I'm not sure just how long the link will persist:

Back in the ’50s and ’60s when I was growing up in Logan, we respected the traffic laws and vehicles on the roadways when we rode our bicycles. We also had to buy a license plate for our bikes every year which cost us $.50. If you didn’t have one you were ticketed. Now when I ride around the valley, there is no respect. Total disregard for the vehicles and above all the stop signs and traffic lights.

It’s time our legislators start making these people pay tax and license these two wheelers. The police should start writing tickets for stop sign and red light runners.

We pay our road tax on everything we own. It’s past time for them.

Jerry Jensen


I like the idea of a license as long as the fee is commensurate with the provided services. We have no bike lanes, and the amount of wear we put on the road is negligible. So I don't think the licensing fee should amount to much, and I'll gladly pay it. As for ticketing I completely agree. If cyclists break the rules of the road, they should be fined like anyone else. I do think (and see) lots of contradictions to the idea that there is no respect for motorists. Cyclists have a tremendous amount of respect for motorists--by necessity as you tend to outweigh us by orders of magnitude. I put my life in drivers' hands every time I ride, and for the most part that trust is very well placed.

The times I've seen motorists do stupid things (two have pulled out right in front of me, and one cut me off to make a turn, forcing me to slam on my brakes or get side-swiped) in the past year are a drop in the bucket compared to the number of cars that have passed me, or even motorists going out of their way to make sure things are safe for everyone.

You should try it out, this is a great place to bike. For the most part people are very friendly, it's good for you, it's good for the valley, and it saves a ton of money.

1 comment:

brooke said...

i agree with you andy - on the idea of all of us getting along. and the pretty ease of biking around here, considering there are no bike lanes (i miss bike lanes). i've only had one unpleasant experience. as far as tickets.. well, i will admit i'm one of the bad bikers at times.. and an interesting note - i once got pulled over in my hometown for not stopping long enough at a 4-way stop. i got out of it (begging, pleading, rather pathetic..), but i did pay a bit more attention to traffic rules.