Okay, now that the bicycle registration and license plate idea is dead in the water and we are all breathing a collective sigh of relief, I think it's time to have a good laugh. Denise Copland and Betty the Bike at NJ Off-Road Biking hooked us up with The Star-Ledger's Brian Donohue take on this. Way too funny! Take a look.
It was very interesting and refreshing to see just about all of the New Jersey media outlets coming down on our side on this issue. News 12 New Jersey's morning anchor staff were having a ball with this story quoting Facebook comments that were intelligent, funny and in line with our general feelings on this issue (oddly enough the best ones don't seem to be there anymore).
And a shout out goes to bike commuter Andy Eklund in the News 12 story linked above, with his great comments and astute observation about people riding on the sidewalk and running over grannies since there are no bike lanes (and who says you can't bike while wearing a tie!).
Still this was a very serious issue which could have easily gone the other way. In fact, I'm quite shocked that public opinion was a tidal wave in our favor, thankfully.
And there is still the issue of seniors getting run over by bikers. I know that this must happen. In New Brunswick, where I ride often, many people ride on the crowded sidewalks in the central business district even though most of the adjoining streets are not all that dangerous. And they do so despite there being signs posted everywhere, in English and Spanish, that biking on the sidewalk is not allowed. Shoot! I've almost been hit several times by these guys!
I still say that it is possible for us bike (and walk) advocates to turn this whole episode around and make Assemblywoman Tucker an ally. Now that this registration proposal has been dropped we should all write letters. First we need to thank her but also to tell her that the best way to prevent seniors from getting run over by bikers, is to get them off the sidewalk. And the best way to get bikers off the sidewalk is by providing them with a dedicated and safe place to ride in the street, where all adult cyclists belong.
And on a side note, I really got to thank Assemblywoman Tucker. She touched one of the "third rails" of bicycle policy with this bill and the resulting effect on this blog has been electrifying. Her bill, along with John's quick scoop of the story here on WalkBikeJersey has been a boon for traffic on the blog. We got over 1,000 page views on January 10th alone and the original post has been hit more than 2,000 times since then! Hopefully this will mean many more repeat visits from all of you out there.
Don't forget. You read about it here on WalkBikeJersey first!