Posts Tagged ‘bicyclists’

Our San Francisco Bicycle Coalition Has Lost Thousands of Paid Members Lately

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

[UPDATE: I’ve omitted Stanley Roberts’ video from this post as I mistakenly thought it was new as of this week when in fact it was posted almost two years old now. My apologies, Stanley. As you can see, Mr. Roberts goes after everybody (including fake monks and nuns) and certain people at the SFBC have been irritated by that over the years.]

Our San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has lost thousands of paid members lately.

Now part of that’s due to “churn,” which is something that every organization has to deal with, but most of it has to do with behavior of the SFBC itself. I’ll tell you, I’ve been riding bikes around town longer than the current SFBC has existed – no, I’m not saying that I’ve been here since the “early 70’s,” I’m saying that the SFBC didn’t really exist in the 1980’s when I came to SF. I’m saying that before Critical Mass (and its predecessor, the “Commute Clot”), the SFBC didn’t really exist – they were nowhere, man. What _did_ exist, a little later on, was the car-centric Willie Brown Administration. And all those functionaries working for Willie Brown were trying to find some “bicycle people” to cut a deal with, to tame Critical Mass, to give grant money to. But no, all the Critical Mass leaders were saying stuff like, “Critical Mass doesn’t have leaders, Man.” Eventually, the SFBC managed to practically become a part of the SFMTA, you know, conducting surveys for SFGov, receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in taxpayer and feepayer money, forcing companies like Twitter to deal with the SFBC, you know, officially, and, in return, the SFBC stopped promoting Critical Mass, and SFBC now offers pols a nice photo op every year on Bike to Work Day and it actually endorses (without consulting the Members at all) for election Willie Brown protegees like, I don’t know, Ed Lee, for example. So that’s the history, and during this history I’ve seen the SFBC grow in membership, from “over 1000″ to “over 5000″ to “over “10,000” and then “over 11,000″ and then “over 12,000″ and then, uh oh, back down to “over 11,000″ and most recently back down to “over 10,000.” What are the numbers now? IDK, 9000-something? The SFBC isn’t exactly candid about its recent loss in membership. The SFBC certainly doesn’t want people freely looking at its tax forms or its older webpages, so that’s why it recently started suppressing this kind of information. Mmmmm… I’ll tell you, of course, there’s been a huge increase in bicycling in San Francisco since I’ve come here, and for various reasons, fine. (It’s sort of funny about how the big annual jumps in cycling came exactly during the rise of the fixie craze, and exactly when the Bicycle Plan injunction froze all infrastructure changes, but whatevs.) I’ll ask you, why can’t a monomaniacal advocacy organization like the SFBC concede anything? I guarantee you that the SFBC people who went the extra mile to “reach out” to Stanley Roberts of KRON-TV are pissed off about the above video coming out right before the Big Vote on Polk Street, which is supposably [what, no red underlining for a word I purposefully misspelled? Amazing] coming March 3rd, 2015, but who knows how that will work out. I’ll tell you, IMO Polk Street is a triple beam lyrical dream the way it is now. What are the other options to go north south in the area? If I don’t take Polk, then I’d be thinking Stockton, Grant, Kearney or the Embarcadero to the east or, to the west, Steiner (it’s sort of the pass over Pacific Heights, sort of) or Arguello through the Presidio. In your efforts to pursue your goals, SFBC, which I don’t necessarily oppose, you go too far and you end up alienating people like me, a man in his 40’s, and even older people such as Junior the Bike Messenger, and, apparently, THOUSANDS OF OTHER FORMER SFBC MEMBERS.

The question is, WHY IS THAT, SFBC?

 

Rich White Lady from the Marina Times, Susan Dyer Reynolds, Calls for Bicycle Commuter Licensing and Insurance

Friday, July 6th, 2012

You know, because of the Chris Bucchere thing.

Here it is, or a part of it, anyway:

“With huge numbers of people biking to work on a daily basis, it may be time to look into licensing commuter bicyclists so they must take the same DMV tests motorcyclists and motorists take to ensure that they know the laws. It also seems that offenders should face some of the same punishments motorcyclists and motorists face, like points against their license. And if they’re going to be commuters, thus increasing the chances of accidents on city streets, perhaps they should also have to carry insurance. I’m not advocating these measures for the person who bikes through Golden Gate Park recreationally, one or two Sundays a month; but for everyday commuters, I think it makes sense.”

Oh, hold on, this post will need a photo.

Type Marina District into the Google, and this is what you’ll get:

Hair lightened and teeth whitened – I’ll have to try that one of these days. 

Now, where was I? Oh yes, uh, I seriously kind of don’t think you can require licensing and insurance for people who go to work on a bike and not for the people who go about solely in Golden Gate Park.

And points at the DMV, well, that would seem to penalize those with driver licenses more than those without, capiche? 

And Davis, CA? Is that our lodestar now, law enforcement-wise, rich white Marina Lady?

OK fine: 

Via Louise Macabitas

I drink your milkshake, Susan Dyer Reynolds!

I drink it up!

P.S.: I’m Brown Larry Bird/ You’re the ’97 Celtics

P.S.S.: Gentle Reader, don’t miss these riveting stories from the Great White North:

Shyster’s Comment: Does Berkeley Require Registration and Licensing of Bicyclists? No

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

If you’d like, head on over to Robert “Don’t Call Him Crazy Rob” Anderson’s District 5 Diary, which has this bit about how Berkeley and other California cities “require registration and licensing of bicyclists.” The problem with that is that Berkeley licenses bicycles, not bicyclists. And the primary reason California carved out a special law for cities to implement has to do with the recovery of stolen bikes.

That’s something to ponder before people use Berkeley’s law to call for a “state campaign to require bicycles and bicyclists to be tested, registered, insured and licensed and pay appropriate fees for this regulatory service.”

Old bike messengers never die, they just age gracefully. Like this fellow with an old bike messenger license plate, as recently seen on Market Street. Keep on keeping on, man!

IMG_9963 copy

Click to expand

Of course you can call for cyclists or pedestrians or any group of people you don’t like to be licensed and insured, blah blah blah. But let’s be more precise, why not?

[UPDATE: Uh oh, it seems Crazy Rob (check his very own website, that’s what people call him) has started using the majestic plural, the royal we. Never a good sign. But at least he shows he understands the error he made. Applied knowledge, baby – catch it! And now he is (or rather, they are, sorry Your Crazy Majesty) calling for licensing of bikes AND bike riders. And why not license pedestrians as well, while “we’re” at it? The World Wonders.]

[UPDATE II: Note Crazy Rob’s impatience upon realizing his pearls of wisdom wouldn’t get put up on this small corner of the Internet immediately. Sorry CR, but I don’t operate this site 24/7 – sometimes I’m off assisting “Wheezy” at the Help Center.]