Fears About Cycling Bullying

For a long time, I thought that my role was to say nice things about cycling in a world where people want to equate riding a bicycle for transportation as death.

I _still_ want to do this, however, I have other goals, too.

On of them is talking about things that nobody else wants to talk about.

Cycling bullying is hard to talk about for many reasons, and it brings up many of my fears.

My biggest fear is my reputation. I don’t want people to think that I have no sense of humor.

Second, I don’t wish people to think that I’m a whiner. I don’t want to be known as that “bitchy cycling fred”. 🙂

Finally, I don’t want to be seen as “playing the victim” because I’m not a victim; I’m a victor. Any kind of bullshit harassment or abuse (which does not really happen) only can make my victory that much sweeter.

My self image is the guy who is in hell who is whistling while one demon whispers to another, “we’re not reaching this guy.”

On the other hand, roadway bullying is NOT going to go away. The police don’t care, in fact, later on, I’ll write how I feel that they are actually complicit in deadly roadway behavior.

Politicians are NOT going to fix the problem. They have not done much save for a few places like LA.

Most bicycle advocates are NOT going to fix the problem, either. In the VC world, acknowledging roadway bullying means admitting that the roads are NOT perfect as is and that a bicycle is the exact same as a car. This means that their classes will NOT make you safe which means that they have no purpose in life.

So how to make us safe from roadway bullying? I think that first, we need to define what bullying is, and what tools are available to stopping it. Then we can actually get on with fixing it.

For now, I’d like to break my code of silence and admit that while it does not happen often, it ruins a morning despite my meditation and other happy thoughts.

Second, it does make me not want to ride on a road which pisses me off because if they force you off the road then they win.

I’m not fighting for fighting for the Right to the Road, but rather to make routes shorter and safer by applying sane principles such as homogeneity. However, I do get angry when bad behavior is rewarded.

Finally, I do believe that through bad jokes, Hollywood mockery, online comments and more, there is an atmosphere that is created that makes hurting cyclist OK, even fun and funny.

This is no coincidence.

People respond to their environments including the culture that they swim in.

I am determined to see this culture change in my lifetime.

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