The city of Asheville’s new effort to decrease its (reported 230 crashes involving pedestrians between 2008 and 2012, the highest rate per capita, out of the top metro areas in the state) pedestrian accident rate by launching a new Pedestrian-Bicyclist Safety Campaign is a laudable goal (but maybe all those pedestrians were not solely at fault, how about informing the distracted drivers as well?). Note that only pedestrians were mentioned in those statistics however, not bicyclists.

Supported by data or not, bicycles are included in this campaign and resulting press releases, so any mention of cyclists in a news article online elicits the same barrage of angry and snide anti-bicycle-rider hatred from a certain segment of the population who couch their rancor for the spandex-clad in criticisms of cyclists’ supposedly widespread lawlessness; demands that they do not pay enough in taxes, fees, or have enough governmental red tape to go through to be allowed on the road; or purport to express concern for riders’ safety on roads meant for real vehicles. (When the truth is that they just hate having to deal with them existing on their roads.)

Typical bike-hating comment online.

Originally published in the print version of the Asheville, NC alt-weekly paper, “The Mountain Xpress” on August 5, 2015

© 2015 – Brent Brown, Brent Brown Graphix, all rights reserved.