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Discussion Starter #1
So I happened upon the website for a local cycling rights coalition and the idea came to me; car enthusiasts should start drivers rights coalitions.

The cyclists are waging a war against automobiles, especially on back roads. They want to convert our sacred asphalt into bike trails, this is obvious by the way they already abuse our rights. It is time to brace ourselves, rally together, and liberate our kind from the abyss made dark by the likes of perverted amateur cyclists.

If we group together and scare politicians, we might be able to archive some worthwhile goals.

1. We could get speed limits raised on select roads.

2. We could get the cyclist contagion banned on select automobile roads and told to stay on the bike trails where they belong.

3. We could even get a law passed that gives police the power to cite cyclist-exhibitionists for wearing spandex. When I have children, I do not want them growing up in a world where they are forced to see the foul outline of mens bottoms.

4. We could get the police aimed at enforcing traffic laws on cyclists as well as cars. They break the laws just as frequently as automobile drivers, its high time that they are forced to comply with the law instead of hiding behind it. If you say that speeding, failing to yield and running stop signs is unacceptable for cars, then its unacceptable for you as well. I say down with the double standard!


It might seem like I am biased against cyclists, this is because I am. I learned at a young age, while biking to school daily, that cars and bicycles do not belong on the same corridor. The vehicle code may say that they may coexist, but the laws of physics supersede these rules.
Disgusting is the malevolent manner in which the cyclists attempt to become victims of innocent motorists. They, like us, understand that we can't coexist, but they aim to become media martyrs.

They will not stop until they have bent out hallowed driving freedom into a form that disallows us defending ourselves from prosecution by opportunistic cyclists. If they have their way, you will automatically be at fault in any and all collisions.

These activists are a corrupt plague that should not be allowed to whisper in the government's ear. Something must be done! Do you agree?
 

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Good luck with that. I'm a cyclist as well as an auto enthusiast and the way the world is shaping up you're facing an uphill battle pitting your fossil fuel burning, hydrocarbon spewing contraption up against a zero emissions vehicle that not only does its part for the environment but could actually keep us from growing fatter as a nation.

I don't disagree with you on a lot of your points. I think cyclists should follow the rules of the road just like cars do (or are supposed to) I personally try to be a smart cyclist. I'm not going to run a light just because I can. I'm lucky to live in a very cycle friendly city and when the weather is nice I enjoy nothing more than biking to work. It saves me time in my commute since I would normally take a train that makes multiple stops and loops around the city. My bike route is more direct. I stick to the bike lane (yes we have a special lane, I can hear you cringe now) and obey the traffic signs and laws. I signal my intentions even moreso than drivers do. I don't run stop signs or lights and don't lane split. But that's just me. A large amount of riders do whatever they want, just like motorists.

Your 3rd comment is just ignorant and a reflection of your age. I'm sure you would have a hard time banning spandex on a woman right? Let me rephrase that... a certain type of woman. I understand. I don't like to see it either but I would rather my child be forced to see the "foul outline of mens bottoms" than half of the senseless murder and deaths we deal with as it is. And yes I wear spandex padded shorts and if you rode you would too. I choose to cover them with regular shorts because I don't think anyone needs to see my particular man bottom. But if I'm passed by a group of roadies in spandex I just look at something else, like you should.

As far as points one and two. Speed limits are reduced for pedestrian traffic. At least they are around here. Take the bikes away and you still have people walking around. And as far as I know speed limits have been increased on roads where cyclists are not allowed... like interstates. But then there isn't much pedestrain traffic there either. And sure I'll stick to my bike path cause I don't want to ride next to you either, but not if it takes me on a scenic two mile loop when work is just a mile away directly. Well, maybe on the way back it would be nice.

I say structure your argument a little better. Spend a few days as a commuting cyclist and get yourself a good base of information for your coalition. Because right now you sound like an angry and moderately ignorant motorist.
 

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Good points, peteberta. I, too, am an avid cyclist and auto enthusiast. I always place a higher priority on bicycle, pedestrian, and equine travel. If I'm sitting in a cozy car with leather cushions, a/c, and surround stereo I can withstand temporary inconvenience much better than the poor guy struggling to make it up a steep hill in granny gear on his bike. I wish the USA had stronger automobile coalitions that promoted responsible, safe, cooperative, courteous, and speedy mobility in a world without unfair road taxes imposed by speed and red light cameras. Traffic enforcement should be limited to those truly egregious offenses like Sally 16 year old driving her daddy's Porsche at a high rate of speed on a restricted license when she clearly didn't have proper training or skills to do so. Or SUV soccer mommy yapping on her cell phone while watching her troublesome kids in the back seat instead of the road she's swerving all over without using her turn signals, etc. Things are much better for both cyclists and cage drivers in developed areas (read most places in/around any city of appreciable size) where there are dedicated bicycle lanes. It is much safer for cyclists who are at a major disadvantage to disgruntled cage drivers. In the countryside traffic is less dense so cyclists don't really post any "inconvenience" to motorists. Bike lanes and better driver training are the intelligent solution to the issue but sadly most governments are failed and barely held together with bubblegum and band-aids.
 

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I completely agree. I think it should be a lot harder to get a drivers license in this country than it is. I wish we could police more about driving than just speed. But speed is definite, "bad" driving is subjective. Chicago is trying and has somewhat banned the use of cell phones while driving. You have to use an earpiece so you are free to have both hands on the wheel. Sure that goes a little way toward preventing distraction but they still have their coffee and newspaper. I feel if our mass transit was better I doubt we would have the problems that we do. And to do so I think we should be focusing more of our budgets on our national issues rather an international issues, but I'm not politically savy and not going to get into that arguement. This is an issue of cycle vs. auto.

I'm giving Endless the benefit of doubt. He may live in an city without a lot of designated bike access from which I imagine he could be getting a lot of stress from inconsiderate cyclists. I don't really see that as the case but I don't know for sure. I understand how it appears that cyclists are getting special treatment but compare a 3000lb car to a 20lb cycle and who's going to win?

The reality is that each person has to do what they can to make the situation better. If I as a cyclist I do not want to get flak from a motorist I don't put myself into a situation that would anger them and I maintain the same consideration as a motorist. I personally think spending time in the other persons shoes offers the best perspective. I'd be happy to join a coalition on either end, but it has to be for the right reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #8


This is essentially what the cyclists try to do in my area on back roads. That road is an exception though.

Most roads look like this, if you had a brain would you take your bicycle on a road like this? Especially when you know that there is a lot of traffic and most of it is speeding? Would you bike two wide on a road like this, completely blocking the lane to traffic?



I biked to school for 7 years. I know that is really easy to tell when you get on a road whether you are going to be tangling with cars. The thing is they don't try to make the situation better, they know they are going to be in the way, and they do it anyway.

I live in the bay area, which is probably one of the most bicycle friendly locations in the country. I don't have a problem with them scooting around town, driving around like they are a really slow near invisible car.

What I have problems with is when they take up the entire lane on a back road, going two or three wide. When they stay right smack in the middle of the lane when they know a car or a line of cars is behind them. When they decide to block roads when there are empty paths, or bike lanes on the side. When they moan on the internet how many laws cars break when I see them breaking the exact same laws.

They don't just act like they have a right to be on the roads, they act like they own the roads.

There are some really kick ass parks and trails around where I drive, but instead they insist on being in the way. I understand that some trails restrict bicycles, but instead of putting their energy into this venue they decide to make war on the automobile.

As for the spandex, don't give me that bullshit. Never once did I feel the need to don black tights to go cycling. Cargo shorts, pants, or whatever else I was wearing at the time worked. I have no problem banning spandex outright, there is no point to this exhibitionism.
 

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The top picture is obviously a race. I've never seen training rides with pelotons that big. The dude in the Dodge Ram can be inconvenienced for a minute or two behind the pace car until an opportunity to pass presents itself. There is no reason for complete road closure for such an event as a rolling road block is typically sufficient. I'm all for local governments giving permission to organized groups to conduct bike races on public roadways. It's good for tourism, the local economy, and physical fitness. It's a temporary inconvenience for motorists who could most likely take an alternate route if they chose and planned ahead.

It sounds like you weren't really an avid cyclist despite commuting for 7 years on one. You were a recreational user who used the bike as a tool to get to school. If you did any serious biking you'd know how absolutely necessary bike shorts with their padded chamois crotches are for keeping monkey butt away. Without bike shorts I can't ride for more than 10 minutes without feeling like a prison inmate who dropped the soap. Plus, road bikes belong on paved roads not trails or parks. When forced to share "fitness" trails in parks cyclists often pose a danger to walkers, rollerbladers, and parent's teaching their kids how to ride because the traffic and speed differentials are so great. On some occasions motorists have come too close when passing me causing unsafe riding conditions on roads without bike lanes. I moved over even further to assert my right to use the same strip of pavement and to encourage motorists to use the other lane to pass giving me a greater buffer zone instead of trying to squeeze past in the same lane nearly taking me out with their mirror.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The top picture is obviously a race. I've never seen training rides with pelotons that big. The dude in the Dodge Ram can be inconvenienced for a minute or two behind the pace car until an opportunity to pass presents itself. There is no reason for complete road closure for such an event as a rolling road block is typically sufficient. I'm all for local governments giving permission to organized groups to conduct bike races on public roadways. It's good for tourism, the local economy, and physical fitness. It's a temporary inconvenience for motorists who could most likely take an alternate route if they chose and planned ahead.

It sounds like you weren't really an avid cyclist despite commuting for 7 years on one. You were a recreational user who used the bike as a tool to get to school. If you did any serious biking you'd know how absolutely necessary bike shorts with their padded chamois crotches are for keeping monkey butt away. Without bike shorts I can't ride for more than 10 minutes without feeling like a prison inmate who dropped the soap. Plus, road bikes belong on paved roads not trails or parks. When forced to share "fitness" trails in parks cyclists often pose a danger to walkers, rollerbladers, and parent's teaching their kids how to ride because the traffic and speed differentials are so great. On some occasions motorists have come too close when passing me causing unsafe riding conditions on roads without bike lanes. I moved over even further to assert my right to use the same strip of pavement and to encourage motorists to use the other lane to pass giving me a greater buffer zone instead of trying to squeeze past in the same lane nearly taking me out with their mirror.
I know the top picture is an exaggeration. What is funny though is even on that road, with the wide shoulders, they insist on riding right in the middle of the lane. The speed limit on that road is 50mph. Fortunately visibility is very high.

I used to bike to school 20 minutes each way. Half of the distance was on a mixed use trail. You just let people know that you are passing them on the left, and thats it. Dogs for the most part were used to the cyclists and posed no hazards.

Look at the bottom picture, for near the entire length of that road there is no safe place to pass in the opposite lane. When I come up behind somebody like you, asserting their right I have two options, A) follow you at 5 mph B) risk a head-on to pass your slowness. All 10 miles of that road is double yellow line, for good reason.
 

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I agree that on a road like that twisty one single file riding is most appropriate. That should give motorists enough room to get by. Also, it is courteous to pull off and let others pass if there really is a huge backup behind you.
 

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Regardless of whether or not you rode a bike to school for 7 years, you are clearly not a cyclist. If you were a cyclist or at least pretended to know anything about the sport you would know the benefit of spandex, just like a swimmer knows the benefit of a speedo. Do you want to ban those too? You can go ahead and argue the point of whether joe schmo is a professional cyclist and therefore has the right to wear spandex because he is training but I think a lot of people carry your attitude about spandex and would not openly wear it unless there are an enthusiast. Do I wear spandex when I go to work on my bike? No. Do I wear it if I go out for a 50 mile ride? Yes. Do I consider it exhibitionism? No. Do you consider a runner in really short shorts exhibitionism?

If I had roads like that where I live... yes I would love to ride them. I don't argue the fact that following a peloton of cyclists is frustrating and from that picture clearly looks like they are holding up traffic. But did you take that picture? Do you know if any of those cars are support for the riders? That's a pretty large group and I'm guessing a large group like that doesn't ride unsupported. Does it look like they are holding up traffic? Sure, but I don't see a lot of traffic going the other direction. Go around and be on your way. Oh, don't want to cross the double yellow line? Weren't you just speeding a while ago? So you want to ban me from riding my bike on a beautiful road like that so you can blast through it in your car? Does that sound fair to you, really?

You may have a valid arguement but you are going about it the wrong way. You aren't going to win over a lot of people trying to stop one law breaker so you yourself can break the law.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This is a response to freedomgli:

Thats the thing... they don't yield. If you pass them on a downhill they do their damnedest to speed up and make the pass take longer then necessary.

I understand they have a right to be out there, but they so completely and utterly abuse it. I feel they need to be banned.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
You may have a valid arguement but you are going about it the wrong way. You aren't going to win over a lot of people trying to stop one law breaker so you yourself can break the law.
Why oh why did you bring this up.

Ive followed cyclists doing more then double the speed limit, whenever they go down hill they break the speed limit. I see zero effort on their part to obey the limits. They go down hills as fast as they possibly can. If I did this in my car it would be reckless driving.

Besides the speed limit cyclists seem to be completely blind to stop signs.
 

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In my neck of the woods bike riders come in a handful of flavors.

Obviously the two extremes are:

1. Smart types. They stay far to the right, will wave you along and wait for you to pass when they notice you come up ahead, wear reflective gear and all that jazz. They also walk their bikes if they ever have to cross a "major" intersection.

2. Those who have yet to learn better. Great Falls is a twisty, sometimes dark (Lotsa trees!), and generally quiet area. When you're in the middle of a lane on a major roadway for the area, with one lane going in each direction but trees blocking what's around every turn... it's a good idea to hurry along or stay to the right. Instead, these guys love to ride leisurely, stick to the middle, and ride aggressively downhill... Then wave you along while almost cresting the top of a hill. Basically asking you to blindly sprint into oncoming traffic. These guys need to be told what's up. Often times if I'm in the truck I flash lights or rev the motor to tell them "It's a great time for me to pass!" but in the Miata I'll toot my horn twice and zoom right by when need be.

It's unfortunate that the bad come with the good, and that there are so many who haven't learned the proper way to coexist (or those that are transitioning). These cyclists who are creating a problem akin to deer at night.... except during the brightest of days are the ones who frustrate drivers.

It also equates to how some larger vehicles will dash up the HOV lane on the highway, and sit on your rear bumper until you move over, then fly by. Granted, they don't have to be going fast, but if you notice them and move over they continue to be their problem and not yours, no harm done.

I'm not saying bikes shouldn't be allowed on these roads, I'm saying there should be an understood system as to how to communicate with the riders and how they and WE drivers should act.


I'm not gonna lie though, those guys I see bike riding in Vienna alongside of 123 make me so damn pissed off.... There's a sidewalk! For the love of all things living use it, it's wide enough for you to either dodge walkers or pause to let them by. But moving 15 mph 1 foot from the curb just creates a block for the traffic, and people are going to take the risk of clipping you with their mirror to move past you.



PS: Riding shorts are awesome. Boo monkey butt, hurray shorts covering your spandex!
 

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Why oh why did you bring this up.
You started it junior, or was that not your intent. Did you not say you wanted to get bikes off the roads to raise speed limits? Still no reason to raise the limit on that road.

Don't you think that you have more responsibilty driving a car? Yes, there is a great deal of responsibility in riding a bicycle, not nearly as much as driving a car.

Look, we can go on beating this into the ground and get nowhere. You obviously feel very strongly about your opinion and I highly suggest you take it to your city council and see how far you get with it.
 

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I'm not going to edit, I'll simply reply.

Everybody breaks laws by saying that all cyclists disobey stop signs and ride in large back so they should be banned is just asking for trouble.

There are a lot of law minded cyclists out there that are not about to let anyone ruin our fun. We just have to hope that the cyclists that do break laws eventually get punished just like a driver would.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Im just warning you against taking the moral high ground. Cyclists are not two wheel saints, even though they always claim to be.

I will say that every time cyclists go down hill they have flagrant disregard for the speed limit. This is the truth and everybody knows it. They do this because cyclists generally are immune to speeding tickets.

But, I think they ought to be pushed for this, if motorists behaved this way they would loose their license. It really isn't safe to operate a bicycle in speeds excess of 20 mph. I'm tired of risking my neck with these reckless cyclists that believe the road is their own private race track. Bicycles ought to be banned or at least speed limited, for the safety of the rider. They should also be required to meet minimum speed limits on roads or face punishment.


The reason I started this thread was partly as a joke but also because I see local cyclists throwing everything they can at motorists. They use bent logic like the paragraph above to make their arguments. I didn't have a problem with cyclists until I started reading their activist propaganda and discovered that the belligerence they expressed toward me was intentional. They aren't inattentive or stupid, they are blocking my way on purpose because they believe cars are evil.

I would take my issues to my local city councils, but the cycling organizations have already gotten there. The governing members have already had their minds perversely twisted to believe that cars burn the sky. There is no way to fight the cyclists unless we unite and fight back. Unfortunately it seems that their corruption of our values runs both wide and deep.
 

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I will say that every time cyclists go down hill they have flagrant disregard for the speed limit. This is the truth and everybody knows it. They do this because cyclists generally are immune to speeding tickets.

But, I think they ought to be pushed for this, if motorists behaved this way they would loose their license. It really isn't safe to operate a bicycle in speeds excess of 20 mph. I'm tired of risking my neck with these reckless cyclists that believe the road is their own private race track. Bicycles ought to be banned or at least speed limited, for the safety of the rider. They should also be required to meet minimum speed limits on roads or face punishment.
Having had the pleasure of "maxing out" my Specialized road bike (indicated 41mph on my speedometer, clocked accurate against police radar signs), I agree with you. Over about 23-24mph, it really gets hairy. I think bicyclists should follow the same courtesies as other slow drivers: If you are doing 10mph in the middle of the road, and someone comes up behind you, you should politely move over or wave them by when it is safe to do so.

When held up by slow bicyclists, I have been known to fall back enough to get a run on them such that, at the moment I am passing them, I am hard on the rev limiter in 1st gear. Bonus points if you can chirp the 1-2 shift right beside them. :)
 
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