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And some people say there is no prejudice against cyclists.

By • Aug 3rd, 2008 • Category: Stuff I found on the web

IN THEMAIL: Bicyclists have a right to ride on roadways

By Heather Jackson , Grand Forks Herald
Published Sunday, August 03, 2008

GRAND FORKS — Dear car commuters: I am a single mother and a full-time college student.

My daughter is almost 7 years old, and we commute by bicycle during the spring, summer and fall months. I have many friends who bike during these times of the year as well, and have gone through similar ordeals.

Yesterday, while biking on University Avenue with my daughter on her trail-a-bike, a man in a black pickup truck yelled, “Get off the road (expletive)!” My daughter and I were biking in the street, as we have that right to.

According to North Dakota Rules of the Road, Chapter 39.10.1-02: “Every person riding a bicycle upon a roadway is granted all the rights and is subjected to all the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle by this title, except as to special regulations in this title and except as to those provisions of this title which by their nature have no application.”

Let me remind people who commute and drive cars that bicycles have the right to be on the street unless there is a bicycle route. There are bicycle routes in Grand Forks, but not every street has them, and University Avenue is the route my daughter and I take home after I pick her up from day care.

To hear the disrespect and ignorance from people that my daughter and I hear almost on a daily basis is ridiculous. Bicycles are a way to save money, exercise, not pollute the planet and many other wonderful things. The world looks better from a bicycle, and it’s a good way to spend time with my daughter and friends.

Please be reminded that when you see a bicycle on the road and you are in a car, there is no need to use profanity and yell ignorant comments. Cars do not rule the road; any vehicle (whether it has a motor or not) has the right to be on the road. Also, please be aware of bicycle commuters; we deserve to commute safely.

Grand Forks is a small enough city where everywhere is a bikeable distance. All we are doing is riding our bicycles, and there is nothing wrong with that. It’s not fun having to stop and gather yourself because you feel so angry at disrespect and ignorance from individuals in cars.

I have a dream, a dream that one day, all people on all forms of transportation will one day be treated with respect, and dignity.  Rich, poor, pedestrian, cyclist, motorist.  We all deserve respect.

I am sure someone will insult me for my use of a great quote by a great man, but I think it is a respectful use and does not minimize anything he accomplished.

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