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View Diary: Cars Cause Republicanism (338 comments)

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  •  Bicycles are Regressive (none)
    I totally agree with a transit first policy, but I totally disagree with the idea that bicycles are the answer.

    Bicycle transportation is useful for people who:

    • are healthy
    • are young
    • don't have kids to transport

    In other words, the same people who already get all the other breaks.  That's the opposite of what I consider liberal values.  

    Instead, how about solutions that will help those who need transportation help: making busses wheelchair accessible; providing carshare cars that will fit a family; getting the elevators working (and accessible) on the subways; improving the reach and affordability of rail networks

    •  On being healthy (4.00)
      Bicycles can be helpful for getting unhealthy people back to a healthy state. I agree that there are populations of people who don't fit this description and for whom bikes would never work.  But given the obesity epidemic in this country, it would be a huge health savings for people to just get off their asses and get out of the car for short duration trips, and start getting some exercise, the physiologic benefits of which accrue over time.  I can't think of a better way than getting on a bicycle and riding that 4 or 5 miles to the store (or even 1 or 2 miles) to pick up the DVD, return the library books, or run to the post office.

      Working exercise into a daily routine would work to keep many more people in shape. Just the little stuff, like stairs instead of elevators, walk or bike to the store, etc., can help.

      I agree with the other points you made. We do need better alternatives for EVERYBODY, including those with disabilities, people with  kids, people in outliers, etc.  

    •  Bicycling is not just for the young (4.00)
      In Germany and the Netherlands, seniors make nearly 45 percent of their trips on foot and by bicycle.

      Those counties have tons of dedicated cycling infrastructure there, and laws are on the side of pedestrians and cyclists, rather than drivers.

      While in the U.S., in most places you need to be in good shape and aggressive to cycle safely. But that's not the only way it can be -- that's just the way it is now.  

      You're full of beans, and so's your old man!

      by skeptigal on Wed Jan 04, 2006 at 03:34:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  All the breaks? (4.00)
      Funny, I don't ever recall getting a tax credit for not having any kids...

      I have no beef with your proposals, but why should the solutions be limited to just those? If all the, in your words, healthy, young, childless people are enabled by infrastructure and policy to commute by bicycle, isn't that to the benefit of all?

      And as to "healthy and young": I'm in my late forties and still cycle thousands of miles a year, and I know folks in their 70s who do the same (albeit not as fast). And of course all the exercise goes to keep one healthy and young.

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