The above ABC News story on this Monday’s meeting of the Los Angeles City Council Public Safety Committee’s hearing on the anti-harassment ordinance for cyclist has a couple of jaw dropping moments. One bike messenger describes being the victim of a hit and run crash four times and Ted “Biking in L.A.” Rogers recounts the hate mail he’s received in the wake of the conviction and sentencing of Dr. Christopher Thompson. Scary stuff. But perhaps the scariest thing is the comment by City Councilman, former LAPD Officer and former member of the Bike Advisory Committee Dennis Zine who clearly states that this is a car town and it’s going to stay that way.
Gleeson: Councilman Dennis Zine says he sympathizes, but doesn’t know how police would enforce such an ordinance. He says L.A. isn’t designed to be bicycle friendly.
Zine: “I think we are a car culture here in Southern California. I don’t know if we’re ever going to change that.”
I think anyone that regularly rides throughout the city would agree that there’s a major design problem, but an elected official that wants to show leadership on transportation and public safety should be looking for ways to make things safer for all road users. After all, our streets should be a public space for everyone to use, not a funnel for people who happen to own expensive pieces of personal property.