Comment 95671

By positive1@cogeco.ca (registered) | Posted December 07, 2013 at 15:31:01

Responding to quotes from notlloyd: "I would venture that most people want cheap, efficient, time saving and pollution minimizing transit. I think drivers get frustrated when they pay the lion’s share of the taxes, through gasoline, income, sales and property taxes to see the resource of the roads unfairly shared. They are the majority, they pay the most, and their lives are shared in the sense that their labour is translated into taxes. Quite rightfully they become annoyed when they see a rarely used bike lane eliminating their efficient, time saving cheap and pollution minimizing travel"

I would like to respond to many of notlloyd's comments but I will address one paragraph that stands out which I find arrogant, and insulting. How did you surmise that "driver's pay the lions share of taxes?" Of course they would pay tax on gasoline. Bikes and pedestrians don't use it. "Income?" Are you implying that cyclists are not gainfully employed, therefore have to income to pay tax on? This may come from an antiquated notion that only people who cannot afford cars would ever purchase a bicycle. Really? As for "Sales and property taxes". Again, rather arrogant to think that cyclists don't pay sales taxes on goods and services (that would included purchase of a car or bike). Of course you would pay more tax for a car purchase but only in an absolute sense. Percentage-wise would it not be the same? It is your choice to purchase a more expensive vehicle.

"Drivers … sees the resources of the road unfairly shared"

How does that work? Cars have had the run of all the roads, well .. forever. Only in the recent past have bike been able to eke our a small fraction of the roadway (bike lanes) and only on a handful of roads - bike lanes which many drivers ignore, park in, open doors in etc. A 1m strip of pavement is not an unfair use of the resources of the roads. Now that they are actually installing a full lane here and there, it will make it safer for cyclists. Do you object to cyclists having a small measure of safety so you can get to work 3 min sooner? Sharing means we all put a little water in our wine. You want the whole bottle is seems - even though cyclists help to purchase it.

"They are the majority, they pay the most, and their lives are shared in the sense that their labour is translated into taxes."

Again, the god-given entitlement that car drivers rule and to hell with anyone else who challenges their superiority, income, largesse. I've got news for you. My labour is translated into taxes too.

"Quite rightfully they become annoyed when they see a rarely used bike lane eliminating their efficient, time saving cheap and pollution minimizing travel"

This is the most puzzling sentence in your whole argument. In what world is a car the cheapest mode of travel? How is a car minimizing pollution over a bike? Huh? It may be time saving but again, your wish to whiz through downtown merits no points in my book unless you drive an ambulance or fire truck. You don;t seem to consider the health and safety of those people in whose neighbourhoods you rush through. Here is an acid test. See how you like cars driving on your street at 80kph. As for the "… rarely used bike lane…" - I have seen many empty lanes on Main St., Cannon St., Wilson St., and I also get annoyed wondering "What a waste. Why don't they turn one of those unused lanes into a bike lane so I don't have to risk my life and limb riding on them?" Your wish to save a couple of minutes commuting apparently trumps cyclists right to survival. This is not hyperbole.

By the way, in the interest of full disclosure, I also drive a car when I cannot ride my bike (which I paid tax on as well as my income but I do not lord it over others more or less fortunate than myself nor use it as a hammer to impose my will). However, I try to ride as often as possible, knowing that my bike puts much less wear and tear on the roads compared to cars so it benefits everyone, including car drivers and cyclists. My bike also pollutes less (read: none) so it benefits everyone, both car drivers and cyclists. My bike frees up a space in a lane of traffic so you can get to work faster. Riding also improves my health (if I don't get hit by a distracted driver) which lowers health care cost for the province (hence, lower taxes for you). Multiply my cost savings to taxpayers (that would be you AND me brother) by thousands of cyclists and you can see how this works to the benefit of all. Regardless of your other arguments about pipes and water, democracy etc., you have tipped your hand in this one paragraph. Your attitude seems to be one of "Me first". I suggest you try to broaden your concern past your own steering wheel. Better yet, get on a bike and see for yourself the other side of the argument. Those who cycle and drive cars may have a better overview of the situation.

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