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?

3 thoughts on “Biking and violence

  1. OK, you need to get a permit to assemble a group of people, especially as many as Critical Mass. No the bikers would not win in a court case on the right away issue. Sorry, biker boy.

  2. Hi Madmouser, thanks for noticing my post,

    As no one is an official leader of the Mass, no one can apply for the permit, so it goes back to the Constitution, unless a law is applied specifically to bikers to restrict them from congregating in a public area.

    Of course, I’m not for any form of violence, so I don’t condone the bikers or the person in the car’s behavior for what happened. It is a right “peaceably to assemble” so this particular incident is disturbing that particular area of the right. Should bikers have this right removed because of this one incident in 12 years…I’d say not. How many bikers would you need to get a permit to assemble might be a better way to look at it. Or, on the other side, how many cars? Remember the burrito incident of years ago?

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