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  1. #1
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Wall of Rememberence a good idea?

    Ok I didn't want to post in the thread itself, so as to not muck up the intent there. But do you guys think this is sucha good idea. One of the people remembered there is Ken Kifer. One of Ken Kifer's efforts as a cycling advocate was to try to minimize fearmongering (see: http://www.kenkifer.com/bikepages/health/risks.htm)

    It seems to me that the Wall of Rememberence distorts the risk of cycling, and leads to the sort of Fear Mongering that Kifer was against. I never knew him, but I'd guess he'd likely have been against the idea.

    And while its unfortunate that anyone dies, and moreso that anyone dies a preventable premature death, it's not exactly like everyone who dies riding a bike was engaged in some noble struggle serving a greater purpose, like is the case of other Walls of Rememberence. (such as the Vietnam War Memorial)

    If I'm unfortunate enough to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, I'd just as soon my name be left off the wall.

  2. #2
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    Plenty of people die in car accidents every day as well though. Perhaps that can help keep things in perspective.

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    I used to think more like you do now but not really so much any more. I used to think that more harm than good would come from relentless posts of killed cyclists, but I have had a change of heart. Maybe it was sydney's death that brought me around.

    In my opinion cycling CAN BE DANGEROUS! The fact that Ken Kiefer was killed while cycling despite repeatedly asserting that it wasn't dangerous is a testament to this fact. It is important that everybody realize that there is some level of danger involved and to take as many precautions as they can to stay unharmed.

    My belief is that if you don't realize that there is danger in cycling, than you shouldn't be riding. It goes without saying that cycling is not the only dangerous activity in which we engage every day. Bathtubs, cars, guns, knives and sex are also potentially dangerous, not to mention just about everything else you can think of.

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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh

    And while its unfortunate that anyone dies, and moreso that anyone dies a preventable premature death, it's not exactly like everyone who dies riding a bike was engaged in some noble struggle serving a greater purpose, like is the case of other Walls of Rememberence. (such as the Vietnam War Memorial)
    I think you are wrong here. All of us who take to the roads on our bikes every day share a common brotherhood. It is somewhat like war, even though you might argue that it is without the great purpose that you alledge war often has.

    It is that brotherhood that leads one to want to recognize a fallen brother. We all know that it could just have easily have been us. We also share a passion for cycling and for sharing the road, which is greatly threatened each time a cyclist is killed. Maybe once you understand that, you will understand the need for remembrance.

    Last edited by Portis; 10-03-06 at 02:32 PM.

  5. #5
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Portis
    It is that brotherhood that leads one to want to recognize a fallen brother. We all know that it could just have easily have been us. We also share a passion for cycling and for sharing the road, which is greatly threatened each time a cyclist is killed. Maybe once you understand that, you will understand the need for remembrance.

    Actually I don't understand that. There are millions of people who ride across the Country. Unfortunately, hundreds of them will die in accidents this year. I don't really have a common brotherhood with all these people simply because they also ride bikes. Millions of people drive cars, Almost 50,000 of them will be killed in car accidents this year, and I don't feel a particular brotherhood with them simply because I drive a car as well.

    The passion for cycling isn't greatly threatened each time a cyclist is killed. What threatens that passion is when people start feeling unsafe riding a bike because they get a skewed perspective of the risk from anectdotal reports. Lots of people on this Forum have said they ride less or are considering quitting because of all the reports of cyclists deaths.

    You shouldn't ignore the risk. Actual data objectively measuring the risk is constructive. Anecdotal incident reports that distort the actual risk are a bad thing.

    Cyclists getting killed is a bad thing. Anything that can be done to reduce it, ie better roads, better law enforcement, better driver, and cyclist training is a good thing. However you've got to keep it in perspective. The risk of being killed cycling, as a traffic regulation abiding reasonably skilled adult rider is pretty slim. To get worked up about as if we're a Band of brothers fighting an onslaught from the motoring public grossly overstates the risk.

    And as for a need for rememberance, let their friends and colleagues, and families and coworkers remember those people for the people they were, what they accomplished, the people they touched and influenced. To remember them just because they died riding a bike doesn't do much to honor their lives.

  6. #6
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlinextraligh
    The passion for cycling isn't greatly threatened each time a cyclist is killed. What threatens that passion is when people start feeling unsafe riding a bike because they get a skewed perspective of the risk from anectdotal reports. Lots of people on this Forum have said they ride less or are considering quitting because of all the reports of cyclists deaths.

    You shouldn't ignore the risk. Actual data objectively measuring the risk is constructive. Anecdotal incident reports that distort the actual risk are a bad thing.
    The problem is that among the cycling community generally there seems to be this perverse fascination with death, or with people being killed while riding. Just take a look at the A & S forum to see that. People post news reports of cyclist deaths, most of which tell us little about what actually happened, in a bid to generate emotional discussion. I've been flamed both here and on other fora for daring to suggest to these people that we should be looking for what we can learn from these incidents rather than simply jumping on the "Oh my God, another cyclist was killed!" bandwagon.

    I guess the perceived danger is just part of the appeal for a lot of people.
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  7. #7
    cs1
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris L
    The problem is that among the cycling community generally there seems to be this perverse fascination with death, or with people being killed while riding. Just take a look at the A & S forum to see that. People post news reports of cyclist deaths, most of which tell us little about what actually happened, in a bid to generate emotional discussion. I've been flamed both here and on other fora for daring to suggest to these people that we should be looking for what we can learn from these incidents rather than simply jumping on the "Oh my God, another cyclist was killed!" bandwagon.

    I guess the perceived danger is just part of the appeal for a lot of people.
    +1

    Just take a look at the A & S Forum
    They're pessimists. Do a poll and see how many are liberals, hint probably all of them. Activists have nothing to contribute to society except fear. Take a good listen to their rhetoric, nothing positive said. Screw what they say. Just go out and have fun.

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  8. #8
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cs1
    They're pessimists. Do a poll and see how many are liberals, hint probably all of them. Activists have nothing to contribute to society except fear.
    It's not just liberals -- and I say that as the founder and sole member of the "I make up my own mind on individual issues" party. Sure, the left can be alarmist about a few things, but the denial on the right is just as bad. I don't have a problem with activists per se either, but then, a real activist wouldn't be sitting on a computer 12 hours a day trawling through google to find news reports about death either. There are actually some people in cycling advocacy for whom I have a huge amount of respect. They're the ones who are out there putting their money where their mouth is, and working toward realistic solutions to problems. The A & S forum is far from it.
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  9. #9
    Burn-em Upus Icephaltus Gojohnnygo.'s Avatar
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    Ken Kifer's death(RIP) is posted at the top of his website. Isn't that a memorial for him.

    Posted from Ken's site----http://www.kenkifer.com/death.htm



    Ken's biggest worry was what would happen to his website after he died. He had poured so many years of his life into it. He knew he really had made an impact. He was proud of his work -- not just his Bike Pages, but his whole website.

    If Ken revered anyone, it was Thoreau. He felt Thoreau's ideas were so valuable and so relevant. He knew that a lot of people had difficulty understanding Thoreau, so he devoted a section of his website to helping them. He thought that if more people lived like Thoreau, then there was hope for the world.

    Ken started working on The New World nearly 30 years before he put it on his website. It really was his Utopian vision. It was his hope that people would read the story on his website and realize they really could live like that. He hoped that people would borrow ideas from the story and change their lives, change society.

    If you've stumbled into this website for the first time, you might be surprised to learn that Ken has died and yet his website still exists. This is a testament to its importance and to how much Ken meant to people.

    Ken was my best friend. I miss him every day. Taking care of his website is something I had to do for him.

    He was such a good person.

    Riin Gill

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    I think Ken would have wanted all of us to remember what he has done for cycling and how this tragic event happened. Ken himself didn't see the truck coming in time from the other lane, But I think he would have loved to pass this info onto other cyclist and how to avoid it.

    As for posting Kens name I DID. Kens site is what got me back into cycling if it wasn't for him. I would be sitting on the couch. I think we should see what Rinn Gill thinks first. If Rinn doesn't like it then a mod can delete it.

    Johnny
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    If you're going to use the word on your wall, please at least try to spell "remembrance" correctly.

  11. #11
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gojohnnygo.
    Ken Kifer's death(RIP) is posted at the top of his website. Isn't that a memorial for him.

    Posted from Ken's site----http://www.kenkifer.com/death.htm



    Ken's biggest worry was what would happen to his website after he died. He had poured so many years of his life into it. He knew he really had made an impact. He was proud of his work -- not just his Bike Pages, but his whole website.

    If Ken revered anyone, it was Thoreau. He felt Thoreau's ideas were so valuable and so relevant. He knew that a lot of people had difficulty understanding Thoreau, so he devoted a section of his website to helping them. He thought that if more people lived like Thoreau, then there was hope for the world.

    Ken started working on The New World nearly 30 years before he put it on his website. It really was his Utopian vision. It was his hope that people would read the story on his website and realize they really could live like that. He hoped that people would borrow ideas from the story and change their lives, change society.

    If you've stumbled into this website for the first time, you might be surprised to learn that Ken has died and yet his website still exists. This is a testament to its importance and to how much Ken meant to people.

    Ken was my best friend. I miss him every day. Taking care of his website is something I had to do for him.

    He was such a good person.

    Riin Gill

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    I think Ken would have wanted all of us to remember what he has done for cycling and how this tragic event happened. Ken himself didn't see the truck coming in time from the other lane, But I think he would have loved to pass this info onto other cyclist and how to avoid it.

    As for posting Kens name I DID. Kens site is what got me back into cycling if it wasn't for him. I would be sitting on the couch. I think we should see what Rinn Gill thinks first. If Rinn doesn't like it then a mod can delete it.

    Johnny
    Taking care of Ken's website, which provides useful information, is a great service, and IMHO, a great way to carry on his efforts, and recognize his contributions. Listing cycling related deaths in a way that serves to scare people, and provides no meaningful information or statistics (as in the Wall) I think runs counter to that.

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