Patrick Appel links to my cycling post and says:
Yes, but the roads for bikes wouldn’t exist without the cars.
But this isn’t true. How do we know? Because, you know, there were roads before there were cars. In Washington, for instance, Pierre L’Enfant set out an entire street system for the capital, despite the fact that there would be no cars at all using those streets for over a century. None! And New York and Boston, and London and Paris also had tons of streets, as far as I can tell, before a motor vehicle ever puttered into those cities.
Meanwhile, I’m not suggesting that pedestrians and cyclists “unite against cars.” I’m suggesting merely that the way we currently use city streets gives too much deference to drivers. There’s nothing antagonistic here; I’m simply suggesting that current policy doesn’t actually use street space all that well.
Meanwhile, commenters in the previous post are all very upset that cyclists might even consider not strictly obeying the rules of the road. This, quite frankly, is dumb. Every time I find myself on an interstate, it seems to me that nearly 100% of the cars and trucks on the road are traveling faster than the speed limit, which, I believe, is against the law. Here in the city, cars routinely speed. They rountinely roll through stop signs. They routinely illegally park in bike lanes and vehicle lanes. I have seen them go the wrong way down one way streets. I have seen them travel in reverse on city streets to go back and make a turn they missed. Drivers are more or less constantly breaking the rules of the road. As are pedestrians. As are those on scooters and segways and rollerblades. I promise to get very angry at stop sign flouting cyclists as soon as drivers agree to accept a full, no tolerance program of speed limit enforcement.