Here’s a characterization of some of the bizarre arguments that vehicular cyclists think that they can use to support their insane delusions.
1. Argument by assertion. This is probably the most common type. VC is safe. That’s it. We don’t have to prove it.
If pressed for proof that cycling on a high speed road is dangerous they will turn around and ask you for proof that it’s dangerous. DO NOT GIVE THEM PROOF. You are not their research assistant. You do not need to dig up studies and papers to prove common sense. Those who are making the extraordinary claims need to put forth extraordinary proof.
Usually they will fail to provide a single paper (because it does not exist). When pressed further they will send you a paper that either is only peripherally related to the topic or actually contradicts their claims. When this is pointed out they will not comprehend what you are saying. This shows how cultish vehicular cycling is.
2. Argument by anecdote. If pressed, a vehicular cyclist will talk about their centuries of experience riding a bicycle and they never had a close call. When told that the experience of a single person does not count for much they will argue a few things.
3. Argument by insult. Here they will call you ignorant or fearful as if insulting you will somehow convince you that their unsupported assertions which contradict common sense should be taken seriously.
4. Argument by nitpicking. When given proof that collisions at high speed are quite deadly for a cyclists and that collisions on roads are quite common they will label the data as “biased” as if 5 million Americans are showing up in hospitals to commit medical fraud just to debunk the superior claims of vehicular cyclists. Similarly without reading or comprehending studies, they will dismiss them as biased.
5. No true Scotsman. This logical fallacy is their ultimate go to.
Every time a vehicular cyclist suffers for his (and it’s always a he) religion by getting in a collision, the rest of the community is quick to turn on him. “He wasn’t doing it right.”
The idea is that VC riding magically makes you safe from collisions from cars. Thus, if you are in a collision, you couldn’t possibly be doing it right. It’s simply not possible that by operating your bicycle as a car, you sugjected yourself to the 5 million or so collisions that happen on the streets of the US. This is because, no true Scotsman, or a bicycle is not a car which means that despite placing your bicycle where cars are, you are somehow immune to collisions.
This claim will be made despite the fact that they were not at the scene of the collision and details are not forthcoming. Despite the lack of information they will come up with a fairy tale made of whole cloth which shows the series of mistakes that the cyclist must have made in order to get hit by a car.
It’s beyond their imagination that a normal person with normal reflexes behind the wheel of a high speed car while sexting, singing to their favorite songs and shaving they didn’t see the tiny blob of yellow which came out of nowhere as things do when one is traveling so fast. At this point, the cycling community gets up in arms about harsher rules for texting and so on which does not address the underlying issue that riding a bicycle can never be safe in high speed roads. The problem is not that the cyclist is not an expert but rather the cyclists seem to demand a super-human level of attention and reflexes from basically anyone who is over 16 and has a few thousand dollars to spare.