I have only been writing this blog for a short time but in the last day or so have not been motivated to say anything.
However, today I have been interested in the aggressive responses on social media regarding the rise of cycling and the rapidly increasing ‘left wing’ of this activity. By that I mean it’s all about rights and much less about responsibility.
For years I have seen the rise of motorcycling aggression in the roads and been fascinated with the fact that very little policing exists (especially on rural roads) in terms of noise, but more importantly excessive speeding. However, in the defence of the motorcyclists, there attitude on social media seems far less aggressive or defensive.
It seems quite clear that more and more people are taking up cycling and quite often, not as a so-called ‘sport’, but more of a fashion statement…based on the ludicrous sums that people spend on equipment and ‘Lycra’ and not just in the machines themselves…or perhaps as a religion. It also seems that more and more of these people are asserting their ‘rights’ on urban roads, on country lanes and even on pavements and in busy shopping precincts. What sensible pedestrian is likely to challenge a cyclist who often has a helmet and is travelling at speed and increasingly in groups. Cyclists travel relatively silently round country lanes and it is very difficult to hear them coming – let alone see them and you challenge them at your peril!
Actually the ‘lone pedestrian’ is threatened, not only by ‘cycling fascism’ but also by the fact that I am told that ‘having a go’ at aggressive cyclists either singly or as a group is a ‘hate crime’ and you could, therefore, be arrested by the police!
Incidentally, the ‘lone pedestrian’ is also under threat from the ‘pushers of push chairs’ (most of the aggressive behaviour, by the way, is from women) who seem to think their rights are more important than yours in lifts, on pavements, in shops, on public transport etc etc. It’s as if they feel they are in the same ‘bracket’ as, say, a disabled person in a wheelchair and, based on personal experience, they also should be challenged at your peril.
So, where does this leave the ‘lone pedestrian’ who in urban environments has been assaulted by car fumes for some time but, until now, was able to use pavements and county lanes in relative peace and safety. There is undoubtedly a new series of ‘religions’ emerging around cycling and pushchairs that may need challenging soon, before they become a ‘sect’ and we start punishing those that are just carrying on what they have done for centuries.