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Friday, January 8, 2016

Don’t make bicyclists more visible. Make drivers stop hitting them. @WashingtonPost @bikesnobnyc


A bike lane, where — if you’re lucky — a car won’t try to hit you. Probably. (Matt McClain for The Washington Post)
About 100 years ago, the auto industry pulled off a neat trick:
It stole the public roadways from us.
See, in the early days of the motor vehicle, there used to be this quaint idea that the person operating the giant machine should look out for other people. Then came mass production and the Model T. Suddenly there were automobiles all over the place, and by the end of the 1920s, cars (or, more accurately, their drivers) had killed more than 200,000 people.
We clung to our humanity, though. Cities called for stricter traffic laws and better enforcement. The auto industry responded by mounting a propaganda war masked as a safety campaign. One of their most successful salvos was inventing the concept of the “jaywalker,” which effectively robbed us of our right of way. (You can read more about all this here.)

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