Here’s video of a bicyclist getting Hut! Hut! Hutted! by three armed government workers for the “crime” of riding his bike in an unapproved manner – no headlight – and without “proper ID.”
The guy explains to the government workers – equipped with Agonizers (Star Trek reference) as well as the usual heavy artillery – that he is just trying to get to his job; that he is coming from his other job (he is still wearing his uniform). This cuts no ice with the AGWs, who are determined to establish their Authority – or rather, the Authority of the government, which is their master in the way that a man who holds a leashed Doberman is the master of the vicious hound.
“I’m going to be late” for my job, the man notes. The AGW says he will call the man’s employer to explain. Missing the point, entirely.
The AGWs surround the man, menacingly. Pepper him with questions. One has his hand on his high-capacity pistol.
Soon, the man is cuffed and thrown in a government goon-mobile. For the “crime” of not riding with “proper” illumination.
The full story is here.
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I noticed the first time I opened the link, there was my comment from this site right at the top? It had no moniker attached. Still, that’s strange. Just where does Matt get his comments?
Anywhere else this would be reported as “White privilege cops harass black man on a bicycle,” completely missing the point of who issued them the handcuffs and gave them the freedom to do it in the first place.
Not to mention the Patriot Act and the handouts for all (congressional districts). Lots of nice new police vehicles, and three officers looking for something to do.
But the real crime here is that the guy is working two jobs and can’t afford to get a license. Imagine if Cash for Clunkers™ never happened. He might have been able to buy a “clunker” starter vehicle as well as get the license and insurance and taxes and registration fees to be able to drive it. And keep it running by pulling parts from other clunkers. Of course that’s not Uncle’s problem, that’s his employers’.
That’s his employers’ problem, as they try to deal with ObamaDontCare and possible minimum wage increases depending on state.
Just because I like to rant about recreational bicyclists does not mean I’m unaware that some people can’t afford a car (though there may be other options depending on where you live). The thing is, that, in and of itself, is the unnatural result of a nanny/ninny state that viciously nickel & dimes people to death over every little thing (vehicle related or otherwise), backed up by a sick police culture that prioritizes making busts over keeping the peace (see DUI checkpoints). It’s like I was thinking about, all those “services” the government taxes us to provide, (alms for the poor for example), used to be done better by the private sector (churches, for example). Maybe if the government could be restrained again, the private sector would have enough funding to take them over again.
Wow, they jammed up the poor SOB over a light on his bike? WTF?! 40 years ago, I rode without a light on my bike too. Oh, we didn’t even have helmets in those days. I rode to work, play, everything. Most of the roads where I rode were well lit, so they were safe. If a road were dark, I knew to avoid it at night. Many area teens did the same.
Nowadays, there are nice, small LED headlights you can get for bicycles; I know, because I used one. I got it just to be safe; it’s easier to see and be seen with one.
But to jam up a guy for not having one? To make him late for work for not having one? That’s just sadistic, plain and simple. If they’d had any compassion at all, they could have suggested he visit a local bike shop to get a light, so he’d be safe; then, let him go. The poor SOB is obviously struggling, as evidenced by the fact that he’s an adult riding a bike. Why add to the poor guy’s misery?
In re: “Why add to the poor guy’s misery?”
Because they can; because it gets them off.
They could have and should have simply told him it’s safer to ride at night with a light, then recommend a good local bike shop where he could get one. Cat Eye makes a nice line of bike lights. Bike headlights have come a long way since the faux car headlights we put on our bikes as kids. They’re smaller, lighter, brighter, and the batteries last a lot longer. That said, you can only get these lights at dedicated bike shop. Then, they should have wished the guy a good night, safe trip, etc., and let him go.
Anyway, those cops are sadistic bastards. The guy is struggling and trying to get a leg up the ladder, so they just pull him down.
Cops are bullies. Like all bullies they go after people who appear significantly weaker than them.
I’ve been targeted multiple times as a bicyclist because I don’t wear the uniform of someone with wealth on a bicycle. I don’t wear spandex and a bunch of stupid gear, I wear shorts, t shirt, socks, and athletic shoes. My Canondale road bike is approaching 20 years old although the cops never seemed to be able to tell an expensive bicycle from a kmart special or anything in between anyway.
As such my bicycle is fully equipped (two headlamps, three taillamps such that any batteries going dead means I am still in compliance with Illinois law. Full set of reflectors) and I obey every aspect of the vehicle code so they are forced to violate the law to harass me. I also stand my ground with them. When they realize I am too much of a hassle they let me go or let me go if I bike the stupid way they demand (usually illegal or dangerous or both). I’ll do that until they are out of sight.
Last night I thought it was going to happen again. I was taking a side street north and waiting at stop sign to cross an E-W arterial. The eastbound cop turned left and then pulled over to the side. Thankfully he did a u turn back to the arterial after I passed by him. He more than enough space and time to do the u-turn on the arterial so I maybe he wanted a closer look at me and then decided not to bother. I made sure to peer into the cruiser as I passed for the sake of not getting doored. He wasn’t looking at me best I could see, but had I adverted my eyes or did some other such behavior I would have increased the chance of being stopped.
Part of confidently biking is to ward off cops. The guy in the article above, riding as close to the grass as possible, is sending a message of weakness. Full vehicular bicycling has its own issues with motorists and cops but its a completely different sort of encounter compared to riding meekly.
When I rode a lot, I practiced vehicular cycling too. IOW, if I had to make a left turn, I’d signal my intent; move from the right 1/3 of my lane (where I normally rode) to the left 1/3; then make the turn. If I had to make a lane change to make a turn (like for a major intersection), I’d signal my lane change; stay in the right 1/3 of the lane to give the cars room; then make the turn. If traffic were slow, I’d take over the whole lane on the bike. I never had a problem with motorists, either; we both worked with one another. But yeah, vehicular cycling makes a WORLD of difference!
I didn’t wear the standard ‘uniform’, either. To me, the point of a bike was to just hop on and GO. In warmer weather, I’d wear shorts. In colder weather, I’d dress accordingly and use layers as needed. I used to ride in temps as low as 20 deg. F. I’d wear sneakers or deck shoes, and I fitted my bikes with toe-clips with the straps loose; then it was easier to get my feet on and off the pedals as needed. Though clipless pedals are better from an efficiency standpoint, I didn’t want to have to wear special equipment just to ride. Again, I just wanted to be able to hop on and go.
I always wore a safety vest though; it was bright orange with a bright, reflective yellow stripe. I wanted to be seen. I had Cat Eye lights on my rides, though I never doubled up my lights; if a light started looking weak, I replaced the batteries immediately. I wore gloves and helmet; that was my only concession to the modern cycling uniform.
What kind of rides did you have besides your Cannondale? I had two: a Marukin M-420 road bike and a Raleigh M-30 mountain bike. My road bike has 27″ wheels, Suntour groupset, and downtube shifters. My MTB is a rigid frame, 26″ wheels, Altus/Acera groupset, and trigger shifters. Both have chromoly frames, my favorite frame material. I LOVE chromoly!
I’ve only had three adult bicycles in my life. Like my cars I keep things going a long time.
My 1982 Raleigh was crap reliability wise for the get go. I rode that until 1993. Then I replaced it with an inexpensive giant road bike. It started giving me problems in 2002. I ordered the cannondale and bought the $6 of parts to fix the giant on the same day. The giant I bought when I didn’t have much money so it was floor model and the frame is too small for me. The cannondale’s is too but a slightly smaller than recommended frame is more comfortable for me because it is what I am used to. The giant is just really too small while the cannondale is just a tiny bit so.
For my next bicycle I would like to go with a semi-custom steel frame bike. I just like the feel of steel better. I have been riding aluminum for a lot of years now but when I do rarely ride the giant it just soaks up vibration so much better. Carbon fiber is like a plastic toy to me.
Suntour is old school stuff. Haven’t seen that on bikes since the 80s. Oh I do have a ~1982 Fuji that has a very small frame. It was in a dumpster at an apartment complex I was living in a long time ago. It is pristine except for tire dry rot and some chrome issues. I couldn’t let it be trashed. I did polish the chrome and change the tires. The chrome needs polishing again. The tires are used ones I had laying around or scavenged or both so those probably need replacing. This was the ‘better’ bike the kids with more money had in the 80s. So I saved it. It’s too small for me to ride. It did work out for a date once.
I have my 1982 french generator light on my giant. Although it now has a different generator since the original broke. The cannondale has a rechargeable headlamp light of some brand I forget now. The backup headlamp is just a performance bike cheapy. The main tail lamp is quality unit the other two are cheapies.
I started running a second taillamp on the lower left handlebar drop. This gives width perception of the bicycle. The other two are just centered under the seat.
I still have both my bikes, but I need to fix them up. They both suit my purposes, so why change? I did have the cog on my road bike changed from a 6 to 7 speeds. The high and low gears are the same; all the extra cog did was give me an extra step in the middle. Oh, and I got my Marukin in June of 1986… 🙂
My M-30 is made by Raleigh USA. It’s not a high end bike, but I didn’t want a high end MTB to start. I wanted something that could easily handle rough streets, bike paths, and fire roads with the ability to explore a neat meadow or field along the way. I never needed anything more, so I still have it…
“For my next bicycle I would like to go with a semi-custom steel frame bike. I just like the feel of steel better. I have been riding aluminum for a lot of years now but when I do rarely ride the giant it just soaks up vibration so much better. Carbon fiber is like a plastic toy to me.”
As they say, steel is real. I suggest you look at Gunnar and Kelly. Both make excellent, reasonably priced steel frames. Gunnar is the value division of Waterford (founded by Richard Schwinn). Chris Kelly of Kelly bikes is great to work with and is very knowledgable. Both companies offer full custom geometry for a relatively small up charge.
Most carbon fiber frames have a harsh, dead ride feel compared to a good quality steel frame. Carbon fiber has come to dominate the industry because it is relatively inexpensive and has a very good strength to weight ratio and, because it is perceived, falsely, as exotic, the profit margin on a high end carbon frame (for the manufacturer) is much higher than for a hand built steel frame.
Many people are also heavily influenced by weight. But, as an old cycling friend of mine used to quip, “it takes more than a light frame to play the weight game”. It is possible to build very light bikes around a steel frame. My 62cm Waterford with custom triple gearing weighs 15.8 pounds, is very strong and has a ride quality that no “plastic” bike can touch (Eightsouthman can attest to this).
BTW, if you have any questions while looking for a new bike, I’d be happy to help.
rodbikes.com claims a model with a steel frame lighter than carbon fiber. Anyway weight is not a huge deal to me. Compared to myself the difference between one bicycle or another is nothing.
I’d rather not build a bicycle from the ground up. Not that I can’t, I just tire of needing to build everything myself.
I also don’t have the energy to geek out and figure out every last detail for myself. Especially in the bicycle world. Buying a frame and then sourcing components and comparison shopping and putting it all together and of course probably buying yet more special bicycle tools… ug,.
I am just browsing waterford’s site. I think I’ve looked at it before. It would take me hours just to have half a clue what I should get and then the hours more piecing together a bike. I’ll just keep riding the old cannondale at that point.
You got me looking at bicycle websites. I am quickly remembering why I stick with what I have.
If you don’t mind me asking, how tall are you? I have a NOS Gunnar Crosshairs frame-set that may be ideal for you. I’m not shilling here, it’s been in storage for awhile and I’d love to see it go to someone who would use it.
I’m sure you understand the problem of dark skinned folk north of 14 mile.
But did you know that some people with extra melanin are more equal than others with extra melanin?
One such individual making his home north of 14 mile is getting a pass for stealing prepaid funeral funds, and leaving bodies to rot in a garage. Some in excess of 90 days.
There’s more to the story…it is a little-known fact that blacks utilize funeral homes for viewings, utilizing the services of the funeral home, and then skip out on payment. The funeral home has no recourse but to hold the body until payment is received. In every case, the relatives of the deceased merely abandon the body. The funeral home cannot dispose of the body on its own, and is required to store the body until payment is received, quite often which never comes.