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Another one to flame?(7 posts)

Another one to flame?I Love Shimano
Jul 24, 2002 7:10 PM
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/tribune-review/columnists/vassilaros/s_82631.html
Let me be first to proclaim his dumbassedness.Leisure
Jul 25, 2002 1:14 AM
Wish I could argue it straight at him, but my computer can't seem to connect to his e-mail.
My response to the jerkPaul
Jul 25, 2002 3:38 AM
Dimitri,
Was amused about your dumb article concern bicycles. You forget that we also own homes, vehicles, and do pay our fair share of taxes. Yes, some cyclists break the laws, but so do drives of polluting gas hogs called SUV's. I cycle for fun, health, and the social aspect of it. My club has raised over $20,000 for the American Red Cross through our proceeds from our annual Century ride. We help kids, and buy helmets for them so they can ride in safety. Yes, we may slow traffic down, and yes, drivers have to proceed with caution when approaching cyclists, but it's a small price to pay considering the benefits we provide for our environment. America has about 6% of the worlds population, but we use 24% of its energy. We are, in a word, energy hogs. So your stupid article has no place in any newspaper.

Paul
My reply to the editors for this ignorant little manPecos
Jul 25, 2002 6:19 AM
To whom it may concern:
The boorish, ill informed article penned by Mr. Dimitri Vassilaros on Tuesday, July 23, 2002, is way off base and only serves to incite more road rage against cyclist who do "pay their fair share of road costs". Does Mr. Vassilaros truly believe that cyclists don't pay taxes, as I suspect he does, that go toward the maintenance of our roads? I would guess that most cyclists also own a car that they must also pay registration fee for.

Mr. Vassilaros' article is dangerous in that it may further incite the intolerance some hot headed motorists have toward cyclists. I am surprised that your publication would publish garbage like this. Your editorial staff should have caught it before it went to print. I doubt that your publication would want to be seen as an instigator should a cyclist be hurt or killed on the roads within your distribution area.

Cycling is a wholesome and healthful sport. You paper should encourage people to get off of their overstuffed fat asses and do something healthy like riding a bike. Aside from being environmentally friendly, cycling is also good for the community, as it brings people together for something positive.

Mr. Vassilaros comes off as a small-minded angry little man. I only hope that his opinion doesn't reflect the position of the publication in which this biased article was published. I plan on forwarding his article to the League of American Bicyclists who represent the interests of the millions of cyclists who enjoy the benefits of cycling throughout the United States.
My response.SnowBlind
Jul 25, 2002 8:01 AM
Distinguished Sir,

I am most grateful for your eloquent article protect the rights of car drivers everywhere who are plagued by cyclists. You are fully correct, decent law-abiding auto drivers should not have to deal with these unreasonable cyclists who slow down traffic simply because there is no shoulder. I applaud your article, which will encourage the more courageous of us to continue to fight back against cyclist taking over our roads by pummelling them with glass bottles, tossing soda or coffee (what a sacrifice!) at them, shooting them with pellet guns, paintballs, etc., spitting on them, hitting or pushing them, intentionally opening the door on them, running them off the road, and some who fix the problem "terminally" by righteously running them over.
If we are forced to acknowledge them as "human" and that they have any rights at all, they should be counted as only 2/5th of a motorist, and given separate but equal (wink wink) facilities away from us decent folk. I think this will encourage some of them to try to pass as motorists, although I believe one drop of cyclist blood makes them a cyclist. Well, if it gets them off the bicycles and into cars, I suppose we can put up with the insult.

Thank you again for your service to this great Republic in protecting our inalienable right to drive.
My responseCKS
Jul 25, 2002 8:11 AM
Dear Dimitri,

Regarding your article: "Bicycles and cars don't mix"

You should be ashamed of yourself for writing this piece of garbage and calling it journalism; hopefully you and the Tribune-Review don't think its responsible journalism. Read your article again- your closed mindedness should be embarassing. Thoughts like yours perpetuate unsafe conditions for bicyclists everywhere and result in negative attitudes of auto drivers, which in turn fuels road rage and result in "accidents."

Furthermore, it's no wonder obesity is so prevalent in America. People like you would rather get in your car to drive the 1/2 mile to grab a meal at McDonalds, to buy milk, or drop the kids off at school, or even to the end of the driveway to pick up the mail. I'm guessing that you can't concieve why anyone in their right mind would want to get some excercise, spend quality time with family and friends, and enjoy the outdoors.

My biggest complaint with your article is that instead of proposing a solution, you are merely comlaining of a perceived problem. If you feel that the roads around Pittsburgh, South Hills, and other neighborhoods are unsafe for both cars and bicycles, a much more useful way for you to spend your time would be to work with your city and town community planning departments to create bicycle lanes on the major thoroughfares, thereby preventing traffic created by bicycles. Such activity might actually do something to address your concerns vs. printing articles that do nothing but broadcast your belly-aching.
re: Another one to flame?BryanJL
Jul 25, 2002 9:14 AM
Hi everyone,

Okay, I wrote to this guy.

Below is what I wrote.

I wanted to write a few letters, one to tell him off, one to educate him, one of satire (done well already, see below).

But, this is what I came up with. The key thing in his article.....how he is pissed that he has to wear a seatbelt, but feels that bicycles are a threat.

Common sense? Perhaps not so common after all....

Hi Dimitri,

I just read your article, "Bicycles and cars don't mix."

I am glad to see that rather than advocating violence or any sort of action to harm cyclists in order to get them off the roads, that you are advocating non-violent approaches to the problem you describe. I mention this because some writers have suggested violent methods for discouraging bicyclists from using roads that many motorists feel they have exclusive rights to.

However, I do think your article needs clarification and revision. Consider:

1. Bicyclists, if they are citizens and pay taxes, (state and federal) pay for roads. Therefore, cyclists (who pay taxes) do pay for the roads that both motor vehicles and bicycles use. Further, most cyclists also own cars, and buy gas, and.....well, you get the idea, right? Bicyclists are, in most cases, taxpayers and car owners. So the claim that bicyclists need to pay for their share of the road is, well, rundown.

2. The fact that a vehicle has a motor does not mean it is legal or safe for a road. In fact, speed and size are more important. Golf carts, motorized mowers, and farm equipment are "vehicles" that tend to move slower than regular traffic. Certainly getting caught behind a slow moving tractor is frustrating. But, it must give solace to know that at least they bought gasoline?

Bicycles and cars certainly don't mix together, but why can't they blend cooperatively? Certainly any large, reckless group of cyclists is not only dangerous to themselves, but to others as well. But I'd be willing to bet that most people have more near-collisions or accidents with other cars than with cyclists.

Perhaps this is a mark of an impatient society? Do we really save that much time by rushing around a group of cyclists? Conversely, does it really take that much time to wait behind for a few moments, yes, a few moments, for a safe place to pass?

Dimitri, please don't suggest that municipalities take down signs that alert and inform people of the presence of cyclists on the road. That would only create newer, more dangerous problems for both parties. It would be wonderful if you would use your position of influence and your abilities as a writer to encourage people to think of more creative, and even more sensible solutions to this situation.

Ultimately, it is a tragic irony that a person so threatened by bicycles, the "road hogs" that occupy 1/5 the space of a normal vehicle, prefers the fearlessness of not wearing a seatbelt. So it must be that your article is written as a satire. Right?

Thank you for your consideration.

Bryan