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  1. #1
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  2. #2
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    Boston Globe Editorial: You Want Love?

    Here here. Absolutly spot on. One bad apple can make all drivers think we all behave that way. Simply following rules and traffic signs are not to much to ask.

    As for not wearing a helmet? Hopefully they get taken out before they can mess up the gene pool any more. A helmet is such an easy way to help you out, it's a no brainier.

    Bill

  3. #3
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    I suspect that there is a correlation between wearing a helmet and riding with a degree of compliance to traffic laws and common sense about being safe (defensive riding) in traffic. So I would expect a higher proportion of non-helmet wearers than helmet wearers in accidents. Do they have some sort of data set on helmet use?

    BrianMc

  4. #4
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    All these arguments recently came up here with a cycleway funding vote (win). Hoons like the 'red runner' guy in the illustration however didn't really figure apart from some complaints about lack of lights.
    It was the roadies hogging the road and wearing sweaty lycra in cafes that seemed to offend most motorists. That and cyclists in general treating red lights as give way, which in many cases shouldn't present a real problem to anybody, illegal because of lack of consideration.

  5. #5
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    I hate that people who do not identify themselves as cyclists yet claim to be cycling advocates are always talking about how great cycle tracks would be for cyclist. I DO NOT want to be relegated to using a narrow confined track of pavement. I want to be able to go with the flow of traffic, because I can. If we are to get cycle tracks don't you think that motorists will get even more short with us if some of us refuse to use them? Will it be mandated that if they are there then we must use them? **** the author for saying he sees cyclists blow through 4 ways while motorist patiently wait their turns. Regardless of what part of the road the law says I can use, I am neither viewed nor treated like an equal on the road and that's even when I hug the shoulder, stop at lights and signs and keep up with traffic, so I do ride through about a third of red lights after stopping but I always stop for stop signs both in my car as well as on my bike. My friends even think I'm weird for coming to a complete stop. You know how many motorists and cyclists I see stop at stop signs? About 3%, cops included. Nobody (cops included) takes these laws seriously, and why should we, we are all in a hurry and our time is worth more than the safety of others, be them bikes or kids at play or a family driving home.

  6. #6
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    I thought it was a good article, and on point. It doesn't matter how you feel about traffic laws, the fact is they are laws and if we (as cyclists) are gonna ride those roads, then we are expected and have a responsibility to obey those laws. If/when we don't, how can we then expect any sympathy from motorists and law enforcement when we are unfairly treated or even assaulted. Admittedly, many rules are inconvenient, and most don't take our (cyclists) size, speed, acceleration and such into account, but any attempt to modify those rules in our favor will, not maybe, but will fail if the public at large perceive cyclists as a whole, as a group, as a bunch of law breaking whiners. Remember, most motorists won't recall seeing you stop at stop signs, and signaling your turns, but they will always remember the jerk who ran the red light, then changed lanes in front of them, make an illegal turn, then pedaled away against the flow of traffic.
    The ridiculousness of cycling clothes increase exponentially in relation to the distance from your bicycle.

  7. #7
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    I for one don't care for the rules of the road. I obey them not because they are the rules, but because it is safest to do so. Nobody, and I mean nobody sets out for their day saying "gee, I think I'll watch out for the well being of Joe Re" except for me and most days my guardian angels. I have been struck multiple times and it is always some person running a stop sign, red light, not yielding to rotary traffic and once someone who turned left across me with headlights on during the evening (still light out) and I had a headlight that was still blinking after I got hit. I filed a report at the Somerville police station a bunch of years back and went back two weeks later for a copy and they had shredded it! I have a crushed helmet, a tee-shirt with tire tracks on it and I still have a very slight mallet finger from that. Imagine If I had gone over the bars a second earlier. I would have gone under the SUV in front of the rear tire instead of slamming my helmet into it. After they told me they don't always save the reports filed and that it is SOP to shred "some" of them I lost it in the station (which was stupid) but I lost pretty much all respect for the system because I realized that day that this system, which is supposed to be protection for the victim, is not there to protect me as a victimized cyclist.

    What experiences has anyone here had that would lead them to believe that the system is unbiased and fair? All I ever hear is "legally blind driver hits and kills cyclist/mother of three, No Charges Filed"! Some of the worst three words we as cyclists can hear and then we stand up in front of the legislators who stand to profit greatly from more cars on the road and the dollar signs attached and we say, " please, can we have a little ribbon of road with some paint on it so we feel safer", to which they reply "we'll consider it in our next session", or perhaps they say yes. Yay, we have a bike lane that anyone can double park in and nobody does dick about it, what a win! I won't say it's hopeless in those two words but when cars and pedestrians do whatever the hell they want and nothing is done about it, well then monkey see monkey do and please don't give me **** about it.

  8. #8
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    So, how many drivers don't wear their seat belt? I do a regular commute of 18 miles form north of Boston to Brighton. I ride to be safest. I always stop at the red lights. I will, however proceed once no other cars are coming cross traffic. How many car drivers don't signal? I think the difference that the car drivers don't make is that the cars will kill or hurt all others, while the bike scofflaw is mostly endangering themselves. I would love to see more traffic enforcement for ALL road users. It would also be helpful to teach new drivers the rules of road sharing. Again, it is the usual bad 5% of drivers, bicyclists and jaywalkers that make a bad name for the rest of us.

  9. #9
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    Drivers hate everyone. Cars that go too fast, and cars that go too slow. Taxis, and buses, and big trucks, and little cars. Motorcycles, and pedestrians, and hot air balloons, and unicorns. And of course cyclists.

    Everyone else is/was/will be at fault for something/anything/everything.

    Expecting their love is pretty silly.

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    Um, sometimes the reds won't change for bicycles because they don't have enough mass so you don't have a choice but to run through them... after 10 stupid minutes.

  11. #11
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    ^^ I have one light like that, which I can avoid if I cut through an alley to go right, but I need it for a left turn. It takes 90 seconds to change for one car either side after having just changed. No positioning of the steel bikes on the loops has helped. In Indiana, a motorist/cyclist can treat a malfunctioning light as a stop sign. So I go as soon after 90 seconds as traffic safely allows if no cars have joined me to force the change. So there is no traffic with me either side of the main road and I pull out with little traffic to witness the act. My trouble will come when an officer witnesses this maneuver and decodes to pull me over. I wonder how few are aware of the faulty light law.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by newfangled View Post
    Drivers hate everyone. Cars that go too fast, and cars that go too slow. Taxis, and buses, and big trucks, and little cars. Motorcycles, and pedestrians, and hot air balloons, and unicorns. And of course cyclists.

    Everyone else is/was/will be at fault for something/anything/everything.

    Expecting their love is pretty silly.
    That pretty much sums it up. Nothing you do will change minds that are already made up. If I am riding responsibly and obeying traffic laws I will not stand out in the mind of a motorist, the guys running lights and riding 3 wide will.
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  13. #13
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    ok Boston globe, as a counterpoint to the mythical scofflaw cyclist: find me one single motorist in your city that doesn't break some traffic law every time they get in a car. I'll wait.


    Since you can't do that, I expect an editorial calling for banning cars from public roads, since 100% of people that drive them are unable to obey the all-important rules.

    This just drives me nuts, they'll point to one cyclist as a reason to discriminate against all cyclists, yet you will never in 1,000,000 years find a motorist that doesn't speed, tailgate, fail to stop, talk on the phone, use turn signals (I estimate at least 70% of drivers aren't even aware their cars are equipped with signals) every single day. You'll never even see a police car strictly obeying the law. But no, it's cyclists that are the problem.

    If people like the author of that article were capable of rationally forming a thought they'd be calling for cars to be banned from all roads.

  14. #14
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    That's the rub.

    Motorists think they are fine ACCELERATING PAST THE SPEED LIMIT THROUGH A YELLOW-RED LIGHT because hey, it just turned red and I don't want to wait, whereas that guy on a bike who stops at an empty intersection on a red, looks, and then goes "should be in jail".

    And speed limits? Yeah, they were deliberately set painfully low as an assault on the liberties of hard-working tax-paying drivers everywhere, just to get ticket revenue, so speeding is a statement that you are rising up against injustice, and your time is valuable.

    And he completely avoids the thing that makes motorists fly into a rage the most often, i.e. WHEN A BIKE IS USING A PART OF THE ROAD THAT THEY WANT.

    So yeah, I'll be happy to respect pedestrians, and other cyclists, and buses full of people.

    The sociopaths in black 500-hp-luxury-SUV-missiles can get bent.

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