A group of cyclists ride south along Pacific Coast Highway in Newport Beach on May 9, 2017. (Photo by Mark Rightmire,Orange County Register/SCNG)

Cyclists Versus Motorists: Road Right and Responsibility?

Reader’s No-Hold-back’s Comment on Our Story titled: Peugeot Supports Meals on Wheels Extreme Ride for Hunger Cycle Tour

I don’t see a reasonable or sustainable path forward with the idea that cyclists are rightful users of public infrastructure while at the same time refusing to pay any fees/taxes specific to that use.

I think this all boils down to being “offended by the ideas of the tax (to use your word, which I think it appropriate here). And that is perhaps where our views differ.

It may make people feel righteous, but it serves to only weaken the position of cyclists. Right to use comes with responsibility embracing that responsibility, such as through the payment of mostly symbolic tax, would nullify arguments against paying our fair share or whether cyclists even belong on the roads.

It turns the roads into something paid for by drivers, to something paid for by drivers and cyclists. The necessity for this is silly, given that nearly all cyclists are also drivers, but the manner in which we have addressed transport issues has and continues to place people in boxes, ignoring that reality (e.g. arguing that roads should be for people, while ignoring that drivers are people too).

We either need to change the way we approach these issues (abandon the cyclist vs. driver mentality so prevalent in our discourse) or play the game and pay the tax for a legitimate seat at the table. The latter is the easier and more convincing approach.


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