ILTB pointed out a link on John Forester's site where John summarizes his time here and quoted me. John is sort of using me to summarize all that is "evil" here, Since I don't speak for you or this forum I wanted to give you all a chance to put in your two cents as well.
This is what I have up on my site as a rebuttal: http://www.baltimorespokes.org/artic...81129150252619
Originally Posted by (some formatting and links lost in copying)Well it seems that I have gotten some notoriety courtesy of John Forester the author of "Effective Cycling". So in response to his post on his site (link follows) here is my response:
Despite it being a normal day in most respects there was a discussion on Bike Forums (BF) that took on a surrealist bent, John Forester, the so called father of Vehicular Cycling (VC) was arguing to ride to the right side of the road and Bekologist (a bikeway advocate) was arguing to take the lane. Despite several admonishments (and) to John that the discussion was not about bikeways/bike lanes, John insisted on trolling that subject as well as insulting forum members and as a result was temporally banned.
I really have to question John's understanding of the arguments presented if the "bikeway" advocates were not discussing bikeways but about when is taking the lane appropriate or not and John in his rebuttals kept bringing up bikeways.
What concerns me most is that John has stated that he supports a compromise position:
A compromise has been suggested by Dan Gutierrez that has my support. The end result of the compromise, of course, must have two sides. The operational side is to be that all cyclists be allowed to operate according to the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles, without the bicyclist only restrictions that now apply to the side-of-the-road, to bike lanes, and to side paths. Equally for motorists; they must be allowed to cross or enter bike lanes whenever required by the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. The facilities side of the compromise is that bike lanes be permitted in accordance with guiding standards such as AASHTO's Guide for Bicycle Facilities.
To achieve this compromise, both bicyclist sides must work together to persuade the motorists and others who control traffic law. Motorists and others who control traffic law will not be persuaded to this compromise unless (and maybe this won't be sufficient) they are forced to recognize that there is no scientific basis for bike-lane stripes or side paths, that in many aspects they contradict the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles, and that the only basis for them is "popular desire" or "popular superstition". Once it is recognized that there is no scientific or engineering basis for bike-lane stripes or side paths, then there is justification for repealing the traffic laws that require cyclists to use them, even when that is contrary to the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. I repeat, in my judgment repeal of the restrictive laws will be impossible just so long as legislators believe that bike-lane stripes make cycling safer, and they will continue to believe this superstition as long as they can. and can be persuaded otherwise only when the bicycle activists themselves declare that there is no safety justification for bike-lane stripes.
There you are, the compromise laid out. To accomplish the desired end, the bicycle activists have to not only admit, but to proclaim, that their supposed safety justifications for bike-lane stripes have no basis beyond superstition, but they can say that that same public superstition might result in a considerable increase in bicycle transportation if bikeways are built.
Bicycle activists get their bikeways, while lawful, competent cyclists get legitimization of vehicular cycling.
It seems to me the so called bikeways advocates that John is so critical of support this position and I find that disturbing.
When John summarizes this on his site he adds this line:
They were absolutely unwilling to admit to the public that bike lanes did not make cycling safe.
This is where the rubber meets the road so to speak. On one hand we do have a scientific study that does show a marginal increase in safety for bicyclists in bike lanes, which (most of) the BF bikeways advocates would summarize as as bike lanes do not increase safety they increase comfort. On the other hand we have John who speculates that the study should show (by scientific and engineering methodology ???) a marginal decrease in safety and bikeways only support the inferiority superstition. I'll assert that the bulk of the difference for safety is just semantics or just marginal at best and no clear winner on ether side. I am also under the impression that John perceives promoting comfort with promoting the cyclists inferiority superstition. Irregardless of whether this is valid or not John seems to use this point to automatically knock down the compromise position, which yields in an automatic impasse for those trying to promote the compromise. So I really have to question if John supports the compromise or not.
Another inconsistency in John's posts is that it seemed as if he and only he only can ride out of the way of motorists as a courtesy to motorist (as long as his safety is not compromised) for anyone else wishing to stay out of the way of motorists they suffered from cyclists inferiority superstition.
My final comment is the lack of references in his post, "Bike Forums" yields over 6 million hits on Google. Come on John, site references.
John's post: http://www.johnforester.com/Articles/Social/Year.htm
Please note I do not speak for Bike Forums nor its members, the above is just my opinion.