Biking and violence

I’m actually a big fan of Critical Mass but I’m not a fan of the violence, no matter what the concern I have for the safety of cyclists, there is no reason to take out your anger on a motorist. I’ve participated in the Mass several times over the years, and almost witnessed one of my oldest friends get his leg crushed by a frustrated taxi trying to make his fare. As MLK Jr. said, “Violence will only beget more violence; only love can overcome hate.” It’s hard to practice this when, but once a month, you can ride safely through a metropolitan area and not be threatened by 2000 lb. crushing vehicles coming at you.

What’s so disturbing about this article is how biased in favor of the driver it is, despite its journalistic inclusion of both sides. No one coordinates the route before the ride, it’s simply the will of the Mass to control itself, the start and stop, the pattern. It’s a basic freedom guaranteed by our Constitution to peaceably assemble, so, to me, this type of gathering has its roots beyond this confrontation. In fact, I dare say the motorist will lose in the long run.

Freeways are basically the cars’ right to assemble and jam up a pathway from use–what about bicycles?