Originally created 08/20/00

Bicyclists have road rights, too



Regarding Clint Smith's letter that cars should not share the road with bikes: Sharing the road with bicyclists is not a new idea, it is the law.

The signs are not encouraging an unsafe situation; they are encouraging drivers to drive cautiously and safely near bicyclists. Just because a person chooses to get some exercise or to commute to work on a bicycle rather than drive a two-ton pollution monster does not make him an idiot or a moron.

Bicyclists pay their taxes, too, and have just as much right to the road as motorists. This may even be the only reasonable mode of transportation for low-income people.

If a motorist cannot pass a bicyclist safely, then that person ought to do the honorable thing and turn in their driver's license.

The reasons the signs are being erected are not necessarily to encourage more people to cycle on the roads, but to encourage a friendlier attitude towards bicyclists who are constantly verbally assaulted and harassed by motorists with attitudes like Mr. Smith's.

As far as the mother with four children in the car who may negligently hit a bicyclist, she probably would be charged with vehicular homicide, and rightfully so.

Whoever came up with the idea of posting these signs in South Carolina to encourage vehicles to share the road with bicyclists should be commended for encouraging a safer environment for everyone. It's attitudes like Mr. Smith's for which the signs are being posted. As far as the labels of "idiot," "moron" and "crazy," I advise Mr. Smith to go take a good look in the mirror.

David J. Collier, Augusta



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