Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Cyclists shouldn't have to pay traffic fines?

Illustration by Jim Swanson

Many cyclists think they're morally superior to the rest of us, the squares who drive cars---aka, "death monsters"---and ride the bus. They don't think they should have to stop at stop signs, and now they're pushing the notion that they're so special they shouldn't have to pay traffic fines, either, unlike those morally inferior motorists.

The Guardian's Steve Jones makes his superiority complex explicit.

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At 1:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Motorists already get the option of traffic school. Why not cyclists? Traffic school is ridiculous on its face - it allows motorists who have proven by citation to be incompetent drivers to "erase" the violation from their record by taking a short online course that is trivial and ridiculous. This prevents said incompetent driver from losing their license despite their obvious inability to pilot their vehicle.

In other news, one of those crazy cyclists ran a red light and put a cab driver into the hospital

At 1:27 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Yes, motorists go to traffic school because it helps with their insurance, but they still have to pay their fines. Why shouldn't cyclists have to pay their fines?

At 1:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Motorists go to traffic school and get a financial incentive to go and hopefully improve their skills.

Unless the cyclist would get their fine reduced, they have no financial incentive. Without that, they won't go take the class (much like Motorists don't without an incentive). Given the laudable goal of educating those who have shown incompetence, the incentive makes sense.

At 5:01 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Actually, I agree. Forget about the useless traffic school for cyclists. Just make them pay the fine.

At 5:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cyclists don't pay for vehicle licensing.
Or parking.
Cyclists don't pay additional taxes via fuel purchases. They don't even put up dough for all those road improvements they demand.

So why would they start paying traffic fines?

I think the real issue here is nobody believes cycling is serious road usage or a substantial portion of traffic. If it were, bike-riders would be required to do all of the above.

Of course, once bike-riding gets to that actual "critical mass" (pun intended), tolerance for sidewalk riding and ignoring traffic rules will drop to zero, just like it has for motorcyclists or car drivers. And the "bike people" will have to start actually paying for all that infrastructure in the same way "car people" do.

Right now bikers are a novelty, and as such, society is willing to indulge them for the sake of "character".

At 11:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And the "bike people" will have to start actually paying for all that infrastructure in the same way "car people" do."

Once again, a complete lack of knowledge of how our roads are paid for. If only ignorance paved roads.

At 10:02 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

And if arrogance and boorishness created bike lanes, SF would be another Amsterdam.

At 5:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every year one of you dies and 2 more of us move in. Give it time. Here's hoping you live long enough to see it all happen.

At 8:17 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

See what happen? Who is "you" and who is "us"? You sound like that preacher who keeps predicting the end of the world, which tells us you're much like a religious crackpot.

At 8:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's a stretch.

I didn't post it but I can use some logic to make an educated guess as to what Anon meant.

You are old and a bitch. We are young and will make this city much better. You will die soon. We will keep coming. The city will change. End of story.

At 10:28 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Pretty stupid comment, Anon. A lot of silly assumptions packed into a few short sentences. "Young" people agree with the bike agenda and "old" people don't? Like to see some evidence of that, along with a definition of terms. Who's "young" and who's "old"?

Some in my generation once talked about not trusting anyone over 30. Funny how that slogan went out of fashion as they approached 30 themselves.

My mother lived to be 94, so don't count on me dying anytime soon.

What exactly have the bike people done to make the city "much better"? I first lived in the city in 1961; it was great then and it's great now, no thanks to the latest wave of young people. All the bike people have done is indulge in a a lot of bad behavior on city streets, not to mention Critical Mass, which deliberately makes it harder for working people to get home after working all week.

At 10:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 11:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My mother lived to be 94, so don't count on me dying anytime soon.

Good - I want you to witness this city become the polar opposite of your warped vision, as you become more and more miserable.

At 12:23 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

My "warped vision"? I think the city is fine the way it is, before you crackpots screw up traffic on behalf of your nasty minority.

I'm supposedly "miserable" because I don't share your narcissistic "vision"? Nothing jerks like you can do or say can possibly affect my personal happiness.

By the way, should cyclists have to pay their traffic fines or not? Recall that that's the topic of this post.

At 12:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, they shouldn't.

And bike lanes are already in all over the city - no traffic nightmares. I don't think your sky is going to fall.

At 2:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They should have the opportunity to pay the fine, or get their fine waved by taking a class. Good policy.

A couple hour class would cost more than the fine for most cyclists, who typically are more intelligent and thus more highly paid than their driving peers, and substantially more so than people who rely on MUNI and thus clearly have time to burn.

At 2:13 PM, Anonymous Your Neighbor said...

"All the bike people have done is indulge in a a lot of bad behavior on city streets,"

What you're implying is that everyone else's behavior on city streets is and has always been saintly, to which I say, bullshit. You've lived in the city long enough to see how poorly people drive here, how frequently pedestrians wander into the middle of the street, and how boorishly everyone—cyclists included— acts on the streets of San Francisco. Cyclists are simply a small sampling of our city's massively self-absorbed general population, too proud of their own individuality to empathize with anyone who doesn't share their sexual/racial/cultural/political identity.

Nothing you say about cyclists is unique to them as a constituency, and it fails to describe any single person accurately. We don't all ride in Critical Mass, and some of us even stop at stop signs—which is not something most drivers do very often either, in case you haven't noticed. And I think most cyclists would agree that the scofflaws among us should pay traffic fines, just like any law-breaking driver or jaywalking pedestrian. Either way, "they" aren't a political bloc with uniform views on most issues; cyclists are just regular people who ride a bike sometimes instead of driving, taking the bus, or walking.

Contrary to what you may believe, we don't all think alike. And you're a bigot for insisting otherwise, no better than racists who use "Muslim" in the pejorative sense, or cyclists who call anyone behind the wheel of a car a "cager".

At 8:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Muslim = terrorist. Rob and I are right, "your neighbor" is a clueless utopian


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