UPDATED: Which Is Worse Dooring or Tasering? Neither Idea Is Funny…

What a difference a day makes. Take for instance this thread started by ChainLink’s self-confessed “bad boy”:

Giving Dooring the OK, On ESPN Radio Today
Posted by Gabe on June 7, 2011 at 7:50pm in Bikes and Bicycling

While listening to to the Waddle and Silvy Show from 9 to 1 pm on 06/07/11 on ESPN radio I got to hear how fun it would be if they intentionally doored cyclists and how sometimes that would just feel great. This went on for about 20 minutes.

Well I didn’t think that would be great. And as some may know I’m vocal. 😉 So I tried tweeting with Silvy @WaddleandSilvy for those that tweet and he said that the best course of action would be to send an e-mail to: waddleandsilvy@espnchicago.com

The Apology we got on 06/08/11 was a joke. Happened 45 minutes into the show and was terrible.

At the bottom of Espn.com there is also a Contact Us that goes to corporate vs the address above that is only read by the show hosts. We need to get on this!

If you wanna hear the comments they have a podcast http://espn.go.com/espnradio/player?rd=1#/podcenter/?callsign=WMVPA… . and it happens about 2 hours 14 minutes into the show if memory serves. Started out with making fun of spandex shorts and then went on to murder.

In light of the fact that ESPN already had Tony Kornheiser voice his opinions on cyclists I doubt they are looking for more trouble so it would be a good time to get the message out. Watch out for us! Dooring Can KILL us! etc…

And Here is a list of sponsors of Waddle and Silvy: They should hear about our displeasure as well!

Waddle and Silvy went over the line, admittedly so. But contrast their on-air shenanigans with this newly minted thread:

© sfbayview.com

Are pedestrians allowed in the Kinzie bike lane?
Posted by Christine Price on October 22, 2012

On the East bound side there is no sidewalk for a portion of the lane, but there is a sidewalk on the other side of the street. Sometimes there’s pedestrians there; this morning it was a person with a water bottle getting their power walking in.

I’m I correct in thinking that she should have been on the other side of the street, on the sidewalk? Or are pedestrians welcome in the protected lane?

… and what’s the legality of lance-mounted tasers? Because I totally want one now. Ugh.

The very first respondent is the owner of the ChainLink. Note that for the remainder of the thread (at least at the time of this writing) not a single person reacted to the idea of tasering pedestrians in the bike lane.

Reply by Julie Hochstadter 20 hours ago
good question. I’m baffled here too.

So you might wonder why the fuss when an on-air personality jokes about something like dooring but not when an on-line cyclists jokes about taser use? Well is using a taser even possibly deadly? The answer to that question is quite possibly, yes!

Consider the following articles:

Wikipedia uses the term “Electroshock weapon“.

So how well does the ChainLink’s use of the taser-ing idea stand up to that of the doori-ng idea? To my mind not very well. We know that door-ing is dangerous because of the repercussions of attempting to avoid such an incident while riding a fixed gear brakeless bike to work in the Loop area. We just had a vigil for a young man who in attempting to avoid a door-ing incident swerved into the path of flatbed truck on his left shoulder and was killed. A tragedy!

There was a great deal of chest thumping over this death. So you think that the cyclist community on The ChainLink Forum would know not to use a similarly bad notion in its own discussions, right? Apparently not. And just what should the pedestrian and motorist community do in retaliation? Should they be calling the workplace of the original poster regarding her idea about taser use? Should there be an on-air campaign to label the ChainLink Forum as a verbal “shithole” to use the term so lovingly embraced by Gabe when describing the South and West sides of Chicago?

Frankly the cycling community in Chicago needs to take itself to task for even joking about such things as lance-mounted tasers for use on pedestrians its finds bothersome. Perhaps one of the respondents to the thread on taser use had a great idea:

Reply by Lisa Curcio 18 hours ago
Is a pedestrian an “intended and permitted user” of a protected bike lane? Come on attorneys–take a look at the holes in the alleys cases and the parkway cases and the defects in the parking area cases and render an opinion! Of course, people walk and run all of the time in places not intended for that use but no one will stop them.

Only the lawyers should be getting involved to find out the limits of liability for those proposing such ideas. This is yet one more instance in which cyclists put their own speech behavior beyond criticism while leveling at sorts of threats at others. Why the Double Standard?

Are there any groups in ChainLink who want to go through the motions of making up stickers and pamphlets and such to plaster all over the bikes and their owners as they travel the Kinzie-Milwaukee corridor some Friday morning. Can anyone alert the media so that they can come and capture the speech given by the leader over the notion of how utterly stupid threading to taser a person in the bike lane really and truly is? I’d be happy to attend that un-vigil in an attempt to help this group of “train seals” get their collective heads on straight.

I could not resist bringing to you one more notion from the ChainLink about dealing with pedestrians in the bike lane:

Reply by Jason 17 hours ago

No way they are allowed in the bike lane. They think it’s the lake front path or something, which is multiuse. When I see peds in the bike lane, I like to buzz them close. And when I say close, I mean at full speed practically brushing them as I fly by.

And then there was the encouragement that this approach received from one of the more notorious “bad boys” of ChainLink:

Reply by notoriousDUG 15 hours ago
That’s not a really asshole thing to do at all…

On additional respondent probably meant to asking a slight different question:

Reply by Juan Primo 11 hours ago
How do you feel when a car does that to a ped?

Given the context I suppose he meant to ask how it felt when a car came that close to a cyclist. But either way it seems that the naked aggression of the ChainLink is alive and well when it comes to any class of transportation other than their own. And that is sad since there is a need for understanding all around. It makes it doubly hard to side with cyclists when this sort of attitude seems to be all too prevalent among the knowledgeable cyclists on the urban scene.

Of course the most glaring absence here is anything from the leaders in the cycling community. I suppose they are too busy attending fundraisers or at least planning them to bother monitoring the kinds of stuff that goes on here in the self-described Chicago Cycling Community. But when there are points to be made from the publicization of the death of yet another cyclist you cannot keep them away.

A word to the wise ain’t necessary — It’s the stupid ones that need the advice.

Bill Cosby