SHARE THE ROAD
Road cyclists have used the mantra “Share the Road” for decades to remind drivers that both cars and bikes have the right to use city streets and back roads. Now, with the introduction of ebikes, there is a greater need to advocate the Share the Road mantra. The growing use of ebikes has resulted in a new class of cyclists using bike lanes, bike paths and city streets. Both motorists and traditional road cyclists need to welcome ebike riders to our roads.
Traditional road cyclists should support the new ebike users for a number of reasons. For one, it is a whole lot easier to share the road with ebike users versus individuals in 2,000-plus-pound vehicles. Secondly, the more ebikes users there are the more likely cities and towns will create bike lanes and bike paths that make us all safer.
Some traditional road cyclists consider ebike users cheaters, and they would be if they were competing in races like the Tour of California or Tour de France. However, when ebike users are commuting to work or riding for fun they are no different than traditional cyclists that use the roads and bike paths for recreation and commuting.
I have been a road cyclist for over 30 years. Many people who might never ride a traditional bike can now hop on their ebikes and see the world like we do. Let’s share the road with them.
– BARRY COLE
From Aug. 28-30 I attended the Climate Reality Project gathering at the LA Coliseum. Over 2,200 participants, including those from 40 countries, were represented. Vice President Al Gore moderated many notable world-class speakers such as LA Eric Mayor Garcetti, Disney chief Alan Horn, a senior scientist from Scripps and others.
Politically, what was so profound was that on Tuesday, while giving an amazing presentation on the recent climate tragedies of record triple-digit intensities around the globe (California, Boston, Siberia), extreme wildfires, droughts, economic impacts and hardships, and most importantly the science behind global warming, Al paused a moment to say, California Senate Bill 100 wasn’t going to make it because of only four “no” votes.
The huge crowd groaned. Al said he would tell us their names later, but that he needed to get on with this critical information. After he finished, he said, “OK, I’ll tell you their names,” and stated who the four Assembly representatives were and their districts. Instantly, like a knee-jerk reflex, with no further instructions, the majority of over 2,000 people’s heads bent down as if in prayer, their fingers quickly and silently sending messages to their networks — all while the presentation continued on. But nothing more was said about it as there was so much vital information to be given.
The next day, Al announced that the four holdouts had flipped and changed their votes and now supported SB 100, and the bill was on the governor’s desk. A huge cheer exploded. Their prayers, or call them their hopes, had been answered. This experience, to me, was one that I can only describe as a “spontaneous miracle.” No phone calls, no letter writing, only fingers dancing on their smart phones and all of it taking just a few minutes to flip legislators’ votes and make a significant change in California’s history.
What makes it so critically important is that what California mandates for the automobile industry they follow. If carmakers want to sell cars in the largest market in the United States, they have to meet any regulations that must be met for them to do business. Now California is officially on its way to becoming the second state committed to 100 percent renewable energy sources. Hawaii was the first. Hopefully, many more states will follow. Already many are planning to do so.
To me it felt like the Arab Spring event that spread like wild fire in the Mideast, even the Wall Street sit-in. It was a spontaneous happening, and in this case it yielded immediate positive results for our state, country and planet.
– SAGE RAINBOW
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