Cyclists, motorists, climate change, and obesity

There’s been a good few anti-cyclist letters appearing in Irish newspapers in the last few years, it looks like it prompted this rant by Trevor White on cycling and motorists, note the quote from a Dutch ambassador to Ireland:

Motorists are remarkably impertinent. Despite constituting a very real threat to their own welfare, to pedestrians, to cyclists and to the environment – in other words, a very real threat to everyone – they still lecture people who ride bicycles on the etiquette of getting from A to B.

Hence our newspapers are full of windy missives from Irate of Killiney, on the menace that cyclists apparently represent. In a sane world such menaces would be locked up.  But this, as we well know, is not a sane world. Hence drivers think it perfectly normal to behave like lunatics, indeed to accuse cyclists of madness, when in fact it is the other way around. Compared to motorists, cyclists are moral angels.

Some years ago a Dutch ambassador to Ireland was asked, on the eve of his return to Holland, to say what most surprised him about Dublin. “That’s easy,” he said. “The contempt with which your motorists treat your cyclists.” That rudeness is officially sanctioned. Indeed despite the fact that there are now two Irish government ministers who cycle to work, cyclists are discouraged at nearly every turn.

The full post ‘On Your Bike!‘ is worth reading.