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Old 07-30-07, 12:52 PM   #1
jamesdenver
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cyclist death - ignorant comments

From this story

and the comments of cyclists, shoulders, taxes, poor behavior all rolled into a few posts.. How embarrassing. Denver is supposed to be know as a cyclist friendly town overall.
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Old 07-30-07, 01:21 PM   #2
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From this story

and the comments of cyclists, shoulders, taxes, poor behavior all rolled into a few posts.. How embarrassing. Denver is supposed to be know as a cyclist friendly town overall.
I lived in Denver for most of my life, and Denver is a bike-friendly town, much more bike friendly than almost any other big city in the US that I've been to. But in every city, even Portland, or Boulder, for that matter, you're going to find that a certain percentage of the car-driving population is going to be stupid, ignorant and/or hostile towards bicyclists. Most people, once they're made aware of tax structures, traffic laws, and the benefits that bicycling can confer on the community at large, tend to become more supportive of cyclists even if they don't ride themselves. In Seattle, I've noticed that as the number of bicycles increases, some motorists get more hostile, but the vast majority of people become more used to seeing them, and start treating them as a normal part of their driving routine. Maybe the same process is takiing place in Denver.

Some of the posted comments were petty idiotic; I'm pretty sure that these comments do not represent the opinions or the intelligence of the majority of people in Denver. (I Did notice that some of the dumber comments came from Greeley; go figure.)
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Old 07-30-07, 01:33 PM   #3
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Enraged fatsos driving cars while munching on chicken legs!
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Old 07-30-07, 01:35 PM   #4
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James, I thought your responses to that discussion were very well written and made important points. Good job!

It's sad/funny how it seems like the same group of internet trolls winds up posting in the discussion after ever cyclist death that makes the paper. The discussion is eerily similar every time.
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Old 07-30-07, 01:47 PM   #5
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My condolences to both families. There is not much in the article about the cyclist. Did he have lights, reflective gear, blinkies, etc....What kind of clothing was he wearing. I also read the commments! There were some pretty ignorant ones.
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Old 07-30-07, 01:51 PM   #6
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Some of the posted comments were petty idiotic; I'm pretty sure that these comments do not represent the opinions or the intelligence of the majority of people in Denver. (I Did notice that some of the dumber comments came from Greeley; go figure.)
I used to live near Greenlake, and now I am in Denver.

As for Greely...I think its all that methane they breath
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Old 07-30-07, 01:54 PM   #7
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But in every city, even Portland, or Boulder, for that matter, you're going to find that a certain percentage of the car-driving population is going to be stupid, ignorant and/or hostile towards bicyclists. Most people, once they're made aware of tax structures, traffic laws, and the benefits that bicycling can confer on the community at large, tend to become more supportive of cyclists even if they don't ride themselves. In Seattle, I've noticed that as the number of bicycles increases, some motorists get more hostile, but the vast majority of people become more used to seeing them, and start treating them as a normal part of their driving routine. Maybe the same process is takiing place in Denver.
So an underlying issue is how do we make more people aware of the "tax structures, traffic laws, and the benefits that bicycling can confer on the community at large... " along with the legal aspects of cyclists' rights?
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Old 07-30-07, 02:47 PM   #8
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We'll never make people aware of the law. They will never like having bikes on the road. The way cycling will be accepted is by ramming it down their throats. Ride your bike, on the road, follow the law, stop at lights and signs, be courteous, but take your rights and use them.
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Old 07-30-07, 03:02 PM   #9
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I used to live near Greenlake, and now I am in Denver.

As for Greely...I think its all that methane they breath
referencing all the Pinto Beans grown there?
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Old 07-30-07, 04:58 PM   #10
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So an underlying issue is how do we make more people aware of the "tax structures, traffic laws, and the benefits that bicycling can confer on the community at large... " along with the legal aspects of cyclists' rights?
Many local govt. agencies in the Puget Sound region are pretty pro-bicycling right now, so it's not too hard to get support there, but I do have a few quick suggestions (that I imagine have been mentioned before):

1. Put some bicycling-related questions on the drivers' license test (Bicyclists' status as rightful road users, how to navigate when bikes are around);
2. More signage that reminds drivers that bicycles will be sharing the road on some routes, maybe even on billboards;
3. Public-service announcements on talk radio programs (although this might trigger an ugly backlash if the radio station or many of its listeners are rabid "get-out-of-my-way" f*ckwads...)
4. Using civil suits to go after drivers who've injured bicyclists, if normal law-enforcement agengies won't do their job; make these legal actions as public as possible.
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Old 07-30-07, 05:38 PM   #11
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We'll never make people aware of the law. They will never like having bikes on the road. The way cycling will be accepted is by ramming it down their throats. Ride your bike, on the road, follow the law, stop at lights and signs, be courteous, but take your rights and use them.
I concur, although I think there is room for motorist education, as well.
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Old 07-31-07, 07:16 AM   #12
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4. Using civil suits to go after drivers who've injured bicyclists, if normal law-enforcement agengies won't do their job; make these legal actions as public as possible.
This isn't an "if" situation or an either or situation. Pursue both avenues independantly.
The goals of the criminal system are retribution, punnishment, rehabilitation, and to protect society. The goal of the civil system is restoration.
If someone gets hurt the civil system should definitely be engaged. If the action that caused injury was criminal, then the criminal system should be engaged.
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Old 07-31-07, 10:56 PM   #13
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As both a bike rider and car driver in the Denver area, I can say bike riders do a lot to cause this sort of reaction, riding two or more abreast on highways without bike lanes for instance, and breaking every traffic law, especially at intersections.

Cars are the norm, and Bikes are a hindrance to the orderly flow of traffic.
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Old 08-01-07, 03:54 PM   #14
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The Front Range is way too Californicated.
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Old 08-01-07, 04:15 PM   #15
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The Front Range is way too Californicated.
+1 This rings a bell. In the early 70's we used to say Denver is the new LA (only with mountains).
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Old 08-02-07, 07:18 PM   #16
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As both a bike rider and car driver in the Denver area, I can say bike riders do a lot to cause this sort of reaction, riding two or more abreast on highways without bike lanes for instance, and breaking every traffic law, especially at intersections.

Cars are the norm, and Bikes are a hindrance to the orderly flow of traffic.
During my daily commute I see FAR more motorists breaking laws than cyclists. I cant tell you how many times I've had to hit my brakes HARD to avoid some idiot motorist that didn't bother to stop at a light or stop sign. Of course, the difference in numbers is probably to be expected, considering the number of drivers out there compared to cyclists. When you get a big enough group of people together, of course there are going to be some number of people who are ignorant or just plain jerks.

Yes, sometimes I ride two abreast on a highway that doesn't have a bike lane.. makes it much easier to talk to the person I'm riding with. If I hear a car coming up behind me, I pull forward or fall back, and allow the passing car as much room as possible. I'd say 95% of the time I hear the car coming far enough away that I don't slow them down any more than usual. In this I'm not breaking the law.. it states single file 'when other vehicles are present'

As far as downtown... I use a lane. I can easily keep up with the traffic, and I don't filter past cars at lights. I don't see the point. I won't save more than a few seconds, anyway.
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Old 08-02-07, 08:29 PM   #17
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As both a bike rider and car driver in the Denver area, I can say bike riders do a lot to cause this sort of reaction, riding two or more abreast on highways without bike lanes for instance, and breaking every traffic law, especially at intersections.

Cars are the norm, and Bikes are a hindrance to the orderly flow of traffic.
I agree with your first point, that sometimes idiot bike riders ruin it for the rest of us, especially the ones who run red lights, who ride on the sidewalk, or who generally can't seem to remember that traffic laws apply to them. As for your second point, you're way off base. Streets are public spaces. One's ability and/or willingness to procure and operate a large machine does not confer a greater right to the public space than other users. People are the norm, not cars. Driving a car on a public road is actually a privilege, not a right. It's time people were reminded of that fact. As for bikes being a hindrance to the orderly flow of traffic, that's simply not true. Why do you think large cities all over the world are trying to encourage bicycling? More people on bikes equals less traffic congestion, not more.
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