By Jonathon Krall
I am often told that “cyclists are their own worst enemies” because they engage in socially-unacceptable lawbreaking. I am told that, by behaving, we will somehow gain the respect of the mainstream community.
What got me thinking was this web page [warning: strong language], which turned up on my desktop this morning, via a comment on the Washcycle.
The writer basically says that dangerous driving behavior will not change unless people who drive dangerously receive negative feedback. He comes out in favor of yelling, when appropriate. Strong, memorable yelling. For example, “You nearly killed me!”, if factual, is always an appropriate yell.
My own take is that no marginalized community, anywhere, ever gained the respect of the mainstream by being obedient. I’ll take angry respect over dangerous neglect any day of the week. By dangerous neglect, I mean typical dangerous driving, such as passing too close, which is usually a matter of thoughtlessness rather than hostility. Rather than trying to endanger me, such drivers are treating me like I’m just another car. A car can take a few dents and keep running. Me, I’m likely to end up in a hospital. Hence the need for prompt negative feedback.Shortly thereafter, as if by magic, a friend sent me a link to a song and video
[warning: strong language] that is the perfect theme song for the above web page.