Thursday, May 27, 2010

Critical Mass: Contempt for the public

This drawing and the passive-aggressive message below in italics give the rest of us a good idea of where the Critical Mass participants are coming from: they're not really sorry for screwing up traffic for people trying to get home from work. Whether you like it or not, they are doing this for your own good! They are trying to show you a better way of life, and bicycles are a key accessory to that life. They want you to realize too that cyclists are the real victims of this oppressive system: "we bicyclists are ignored, obstructed and physically threatened ALL THE TIME, EVERY DAY." Meanwhile, they want you to understand that the way you live your lives---getting to and from work in cars, buses, streetcars, etc.---is not worth living. Note the starting time for this demonstration of their superior way of life: 5:30 p.m. to cause the maximum disruption of your commute home, you pathetic bastards.

A website that's worth a look: Critical Mass Sucks


WE'RE SORRY!

We're sorry you are stuck in your car in a traffic jam. Gridlock is more and more common these days... it'll probably go on getting worse, unless we do something.

We're sorry if we've contributed to your delay, but please recognize that we bicyclists are ignored, obstructed and physically threatened ALL THE TIME, EVERY DAY. This "Critical Mass" ride home is an organized coincidence that happens once a month, giving bicyclists of all persuasions the chance to see that we are not alone, and that we, too, have a right to the road.

We're sorry that absurd and mean-spirited decisions about how we live are made behind the closed doors of the corporate and government elite, leading to a suicidal dependence on the automobile and the oil industry, a cancer epidemic and general ecological catastrophe. We know there are better alternatives, and our monthly ride demonstrates one of them.

We're sorry that we all go on reproducing this silly and self-degrading way of life, instead of throwing it over and making a life worth living. Why should we do jobs which make our lives worse due to toxic waste or pollution? Why are our best intentions always corrupted by the need to "make a living"? These questions have complex and difficult answers, answers worth looking into. But for now...

We're sorry you're not already out here on your bicycle riding with us! But we heartily invite you to join us next time. Remember, every day is a good bicycling day! Meet at the foot of Market Street on the last working Friday of the each month at 5:30 p.m.

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7 Comments:

At 6:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's actually more like 6:30, Rob.

 
At 8:16 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

Awesome poster and commentary! thank you.

They sure do come across as "holier than you"..don't they?

:)

 
At 10:04 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

So you start screwing up traffic at 6:30 and not 5:30? Oh, that puts a completely different light on it! The question is, Why not do it on the weekend to minimize the disruption? The answer: because you don't want to minimize the disruption. Disruption is the whole point of Critical Mass.

 
At 4:54 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

Says 5:30 on the CM website.

 
At 5:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bring Rocky down at 5:30 for a ride and you'll be waiting around til 6:30.

 
At 11:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They didn't choose that start time in order to cause the most disruption possible. They chose it because that's the time when people could meet up right after work and go on a ride together.

I don't understand how you can fail to see the attempt at diplomacy in the 'We're Sorry' message that you've re-published here.

 
At 10:54 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

That statement is "diplomacy"? Pretty poor interpretation, Anon. And I suppose it's just a coincidence that all those cyclists happen to meet during a Friday night commute.

 

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