Cyclists Hit; Cops Shrug

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(I’m posting this as a favor to Morgan, the author, because he can’t remember his login password and is waiting to get it through email…)

Cyclist Hit; Cops Shrug

This is out of hand.

In the month of August, two of my friends were deliberately struck by
drivers. Elijah was chased onto the sidewalk by a car in the middle of
the afternoon. The police report says something like “cyclist was
deliberately struck by motor vehicle;” nothing else. As far as I can
tell, they didn’t even interview the two eyewitnesses at the scene.
Ashley was rear-ended during Critical Mass – the driver would rather
kill her then slow down. Let’s be clear here; the driver aggressively
drove an SUV into a group of 150 to 200 cyclists, and then struck one of
them from behind. The driver stopped, but the cops not only declined to
issue him a ticket, they refused to even write a report. Oh, wait, a
sergeant did find the energy to lecture Ashley for over an hour on how
it’s her responsibility to not provoke drivers into rear-ending her.

In a city with, what, ten blocks of bike lane, the only thing left to
protect cyclists on the road are the laws that give equal rights to
bicycles and cars. And the people in this city responsible for enforcing
those laws have quite clearly expressed either their indifference or
outright hostility to bicycles.

The only thing I can think to do is make as much noise as possible. I’d
like to hold a public forum, have cyclists who have been struck tell
their stories. I’d like to invite our city council members, our youthful
mayor, and ask them why the roads here are so badly designed (how am I
supposed to bike from Downtown to Oakland again?) and what they are
doing about it. I’d like to invite the Police, and ask them why they
hate cyclists. And, of course, I’d like to invite the press, because our
elected officials make lots of promises, and the police might just tazer
us otherwise.

I’d love some help putting this together. Specifically;

* Your attendance and your stories. Been hit? On Purpose? Tell us.
* help finding a space
* help rounding up officials
* Help rounding up media

Please let me know if you can help with any of this. I’d like to pull
this off by next week.


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