[*BCM*] Longfellow / Cambridge Bike Police
hyamada at MIT.EDU
Mon Aug 4 01:33:17 EDT 2008
>>but what they are not doing is navigating a ~2000lb weapon which
could easily kill others.
I think this is more the issue than anything -- numbers and percentages
aside, it's the straight up and down human aspect of it all. It's the
same factor by which bikes should ride on the road over the sidewalk.
Laws aside, mounting the sidewalk endangers the pedestrians via keeping
the cyclist safe. For a car to speed up through a yellow, turn without
signaling, double park, drive too fast, cut in front of cyclists, take
lanes without warnning and just the general bad driving that we've all
witnessed, been the unfortunate brunt of, are all examples of situations
when the car driver is putting other people in unnecessary risk with
little to no harm to themselves, and often with selfish intent (be it
saved time at the light or less hassle to walk from a more distant
parking space etc).
By the same token, however, cyclists are just as much required to follow
the laws that are applicable to them, and should be held accountable. In
this vain, police enforcement is good. What's /not/ good, though, is the
hypocrisy of police enforcing automobile infractions (double parking,
turning w/o signaling, running reds etc). Regardless of numbers or
proportionality, enforcement should be consistent across all fronts. If
the law is flexible and turns a blind eye at some times, it's no longer
a sound institution on which most of society can be based.
> Anne Wolfe wrote:
>> Cyclists who run red lights are at greater risk of potential harm as
>> when they're struck by oncoming traffic they have nothing to protect
>> them. Unlike, say, being in a car which is struck.
> I don't think that really matters. If a cyclists wants to be reckless
> and endanger their own life, that's their choice, but what they are not
> doing is navigating a ~2000lb weapon which could easily kill others. It
> is certainly possible for a cyclist to harm and perhaps kill others upon
> collision, but FAR less likely.
> In other words, cyclists breaking the law are more of a nuisance where
> motorists doing the same are more of a threat to other people.
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