Over the past few weeks, there have been a number of downright wacky stories in the news…a backlash against the growing bicycle “culture” in the U.S.
First, the casino town of Black Hawk, Colorado has banned bicycles from most of its streets despite an outcry from national news organizations and a number of cycling advocacy groups. Next, the town of St. Charles, Missouri proposed a similar ban on its roads. Currently, the St. Charles City Council has tabled the proposal, but will revisit it next week. Not to be outdone, the city of Charleston, South Carolina proposed to ban bicycle parking within its downtown…luckily, this proposal was crushed by a vocal opposition.
And now today I got a number of emailed article links (thanks to Jim and Phil and the five or six others who alerted me to this) concerning some knucklehead named Dan Maes in Colorado who claims that Denver’s mayor is pushing a vast UN-backed bicycle conspiracy upon the city there.
I’m left scratching my head and wondering what the heck is going on? I mean, it’s fairly common knowledge that transportational cycling and pedestrian-friendly streets do wonders for the liveability of an area — helping to reduce traffic congestion, improving the health of residents and eliminating a lot of greenhouse gases from the environment. And I’m the first to admit that bicycle/pedestrian advocates aren’t always that subtle when pitching the benefits…many of us approach the subject with an almost religious fervor that can be off-putting to others. But why do you suppose there is this backlash going on? Any thoughts? We’d love to hear your insights on these developments in the comments area below.