danhopgood wrote:Well I do think its worth getting concerned about it - there we differ. We're all more than cyclists - and use other modes of transport. As a pedestrian, I get mightily annoyed at pedestrian crossings where cyclists go through at red, weaving through pedestrians. That alone gives cyclists a bad reputation.
That would annoy me both as a cyclist and a pedestrian,however I don't witness it happening enough to label all cyclists a law breakers,which maybe because I don't live in London,I don't know though I suspect not.
What does annoy is being lumped in with such antisocial people and treated as if all cyclists behave in a similar fashion.
I was once shouted at for having no bell by a dog walker who was with two others(three people,three dogs all on leads)even though I'd spoken to them politely as I approached from behind on a 3m wide tarmac road through a local country park.All three had acknowledged my approach.
Her retort was ''where's your bell'' I replied that I didn't need one as I'd spoken to them and they knew I was approaching(slowly @ sub 5mph whilst I passed them),her rely to that was ''you're all the same you cyclists''
At that I stopped and asked,again politely,same as what? No reply,so I thought I'd make it a little easier for her and asked ''same as Gypsies,Muslims,coloured people,homosexuals,hippies,drug dealers?''
This seemed to stun her into silence.
On another occasion I was stopped at a catering trailer buying a cup of tea,it was later afternoon and the weather was dull/cloudy,so I had my lights switched on with the bike leaned against the trailer.As I was being served,a motorcyclist pulled up,on removing his helmet the rider(a chap in in his 50's)said ''that's a first,a cyclist with lights''.I replied ''and that's a first a motocyclist not speeding,must be because he's stopped''.
His retort was that not all motorcyclists break speed limits,so I told him not all cyclist don't have lights on when needed.
He still didn't see the point so I told him to ''go figure''
The problem is one of prejudice and if you belong(purposely or not)to a perceived minority group you're fair game to be bullied whenever the larger majority (in this case motorists),sees it to fit their agenda.
The agenda of an increasing minority of motorists,is that all cyclists are nuisance freeloaders,who don't pay their dues to use 'their' roads and hold up traffic or ride dangerously through traffic or on pavements or without lights when needed,ignoring the rules of the road.
All of which isn't true for all cyclists.
The roads are open to me and everyone else who lives or visits this country,whatever their means of transport so long as it's road legal, and they acknowledge the rules of the road.
The real problem is that there isn't an effective police force to enforce the law of the land,due to slashing of their numbers and increasing politicisation of the police.
Politicisation that allows motorists to park more or less anywhere they desire,drive with faults on their vehicles such as defective tyres and lights are a very obvious examples,and yes allows idiotic cyclists to break laws with impunity mostly.
One thing's for sure though I will not allow myself to be lumped in with those kind of law breaking cyclist because I'm a cyclist as I won't be lumped in with those kinds of motorists because I'm a motorist.
It's the lack of effective policing that concerns me more than anything else and the fact that even they choose to pick on the easy option to raise revenue if the latest CTC cycling on the pavement case is anything to go by,only to have to backpedal(sorry) on the case when it's realised just how petty and stupid their prosecution was.
Due in no small measure IMO,to the helmet cam video in the ''offender's'' possession!
In the past on here,I've likened being a cyclist in the UK to being black person in the southern states or the USA in bygone a times from a prejudice perspective.
I've no reason to change the view.