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“Denying” use of cars is “evil”: How to respond to a carfree naysayer

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on June 20th, 2008 at 10:02 am

"I seriously disagree with... taking an entire neighborhood and denying them the use of their cars, which I think is an evil thing to do to people, even if just for one Sunday."
--talk show host Lars Larson

On the opening day of the Towards Carfree Cities Conference, right-wing talk radio personality Lars Larson invited Meghan Sinnott, one of the event's organizers, onto his show.

In the interview (mp3 below) Ms. Sinnott provides a textbook example on how to handle someone with a pro-car mentality who is opposed to the ideas and concepts that define the livable streets and carfree movements.

In the interview, Larson asks Sinnott a series of questions about Portland's upcoming Sunday Parkways event (this Sunday!) in hopes of getting her to argue with him (a stance hosts like this thrive on).

Here are a few of his questions (listen to the interview below for her answers):

Lars Larson
(Photo: LarsLarson.com)
    Why was the city willing to close down 6 square miles of streets that people have paid for and people are used to being able to drive on?

    What about the people who can't get around on bicycles or for whom the weather is an impediment, what do you say to them?

    95% of people commute in automobiles every day, how is it that cars are in the way?

    Meghan Sinnott
    (Photo: CarfreePortland)

    So, the people stuck in rush hour traffic would be better if they were just walking up the freeway?

    Since 95% of the people commute in cars, do you ever think we should make it easier for people to drive cars?

    Why is it desirable to move in that direction [encouraging transit and biking], rather than allow people the individual freedom to go where they need to go, when they want to go there?

The final exchange is the best part of the entire interview. As if frustrated that Sinnott never gave him the opening to express his displeasure with Sunday Parkways, at the very end of the interview (after he already said goodbye to Sinnott), he encourages this final exchange:

Larson:

"By the way, the thing I seriously disagree with you in doing is taking an entire neighborhood and denying them the use of their cars, which I think is an evil thing to do to people, even if just for one Sunday."

Sinnott:

"I'm sorry if you think we're evil Lars. encourage you to join us on Sunday and see how not evil we are."

Larson:

"No, I won't be doing that, because when you take an entire neighborhood and you say, 'you are denied the use of your automobile', I think you're taking away somebody's ability to travel and I think that's the wrong thing to do. I think that's the wrong way to get your message across, but, it's pretty typical of people who've decided they know the right for people to live is just to force them to live that way."

Sinnott:

"That's the way a lot of people who bike and walk feel about car drivers."

Larson:

"But see, I don't deny anybody the use of a bicycle*, in fact I pay for the roads they ride on and they don't pay for the roads."

And of course, Larson gets the final word:

"That was Megan Sinnott, who is one of those people who believes that we'd all be better off if society was without automobiles."

Listen to the entire interview below (it's about 8 minutes long):

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Comments
  • Bob_M June 20, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Lars is such a knob

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    • Leeman June 7, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      Those are the exact words I was going to use.

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  • a.O June 20, 2008 at 10:08 am

    Look up \"douchebag\" in the dictionary and there\'s a picture of Larson. Where to start? OK, 95% do not commute in automobiles every day, at least not in Portland. There\'s the low-hanging fruit. Anyone else care to pick up where I left off?

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  • a.O June 20, 2008 at 10:09 am

    Oh, and *nice work,* Meghan!!

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  • Jonathan Maus (Editor) June 20, 2008 at 10:13 am

    Lars gets so many things wrong it\'s hard to know where to start.

    First, 95% of Portlanders don\'t commute by car... he has totally forgotten the transit users and the walkers.

    Also, he does prevent people from riding bikes.. the number #1 reason people don\'t ride is out of fear from car traffic!

    And the big one is the \"bikes don\'t pay\" line. That is just a silly argument that has been refuted many times already.

    but in general, his tone (and that of others like him) is sounding more and more out of touch with reality.

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  • T Williams June 20, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Lars who?

    Just kidding. I used to listen to his show (\"know thy enemy\"), but don\'t any longer for no other reason than it got to the point that listening to him was like sticking an icepick in my ear - and then banging my head sideways against a wall. I don\'t believe that he\'s clinically insane, but it seems like his show panders to those who are.

    Myself and most folks I have as friends find plenty of reasons to laugh at him (and his core listeners) without intelligent, forward-thinkers going on and giving us fodder for comedy. Why people who don\'t share his outlook still go on his show is beyond me.

    Let him and his brain-drained listenership die out with the rest of the car-worship culture... there\'s no need to feed them with progressive thoughts.

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  • tonyt June 20, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Hey Jonathan,

    Perhaps you could do an article that would refute the \"drivers pay for the roads\" thing. A nice point-by-point, with good summaries of what money comes from where would be nice.

    Something that we could then link to when we are having this argument with the car-centric complainers.

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  • bob June 20, 2008 at 10:31 am

    Truth is Meghan did not have very good arguments against Lars.

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  • Dennis June 20, 2008 at 10:31 am

    Lars Larsen, he\'s always just been a poor excuse for a grammatically challenged limbaugh anyway.

    I\'ve been encouraging my automobile-centered friends to attend this event. I think they\'ll finally understand what I\'ve been talking about. Our streets can be peaceful, and safe for children. They can be fairly quiet, while still moving people, with very good efficiency.

    Things are changing. I can tell. My friends that thought buying a hybrid was pretentious are now asking me for ideas, on how to survive unrelenting energy costs. to be honest, I\'m excited about $5 fuel this summer. we may not have to close off roads, as cars will make excellent planters in peoples driveways.

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  • Mark C June 20, 2008 at 10:35 am

    \"listening to him was like sticking an icepick in my ear - and then banging my head sideways against a wall\"

    Funny, that\'s exactly how I feel when I hear George Bush\'s voice.

    I think Lars and others like him know deep-down that the car-dominated era is drawing to a close, and they\'re not going down without a fight. Cars have (and will continue to have) their place, just not their historically dominant one to the detriment of everything else.

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  • Brian Johnson June 20, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Lars is such a joke. It seems like every time I hear him on the radio he\'s harping on about how we need MORE and BIGGER roads.

    Plus he\'s so close-minded and rude!

    Meagan? She\'s my hero. Totally unflappable. Awesome job, Meagan!

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  • a.O June 20, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Perhaps you could do an article that would refute the \"drivers pay for the roads\" thing. A nice point-by-point, with good summaries of what money comes from where would be nice.

    Something that we could then link to when we are having this argument with the car-centric complainers.

    Boy, wouldn\'t that be useful...a conclusive refutation of the last remaining tether of an argument of the cars-first set!!

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  • Schrauf June 20, 2008 at 10:43 am

    Meghan, I love you!

    Great interview, especially considering what you had to work with.

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  • Jonathan Maus (Editor) June 20, 2008 at 10:44 am

    \"Truth is Meghan did not have very good arguments against Lars.\"

    That\'s sort of the point, bob.

    She killed him with kindness and didn\'t fall into his traps. Larson did not likely want to engage in a real argument anyways... he is more interested in confrontation in situations like this and he cannot function like he wants to when someone (who he sees as an activist) does not play into his game.

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  • ambrown June 20, 2008 at 10:50 am

    Won\'t it be great when our boy Earl is secretary of transportation under a pro-bike obama presidency and Lars will have to just wither and wine to fewer and fewer bigoted listeners...

    While I know the \"bike lobby\" gets the occasional crank going on bojack, Cato, and a few of the other right-wing nut jobs, I think we have to take a moment to recognize that the level of vitriol against the Sunday Parkways is higher than expected.

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  • Todd Waddell June 20, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Jonathon, you\'re absolutely right, this is a model of how to handle these situations.

    Meghan did a fantastic job defusing this jerk!

    Thanks to Meghan, thanks to Jonathon. And thanks to Lars for allowing Megan to make a him look like a complete a**.

    What? You mean he wasn\'t trying to be a cartoonish, right wing reactionary buffoon? Oh, what a shame.

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  • Pete June 20, 2008 at 10:51 am

    I just saw today\'s Oregonian\'s Business section. There\'s a cover on how more and more people are \"losing two of their wheels\" to get around. Let\'s talk about that, Lars - sounds like free will to me!

    It\'s too bad it\'s taken a punch in the wallet to inspire so many people to get on a bike, but hopefully they\'ll see the other benefits (and ignorance in the anti-cycling attitudes) once they get time in the saddle and pay attention to what others are saying about it.

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  • kiwimunki June 20, 2008 at 10:52 am

    On behalf of the less eloquent bike advocates among us, I would like to offer my thanks to Meghan for being such a savvy, quick-witted voice for all of us. I laughed to hear her foil Lars\' antagonistic remarks, one after another.

    Carfree Conferences did well in choosing their spokesperson.

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  • Toby June 20, 2008 at 10:53 am

    His voice has that same chortled, fat dripping out of his ears, mouth full of raw sausage sound that Rush has that makes me nauseous. Fortunately, Meagan\'s voice is the angelic polar opposite. I wonder if he thinks parades are evil? After all, they deny him his freedom of using that road in the name of liberty.

    Jonathan, I second tonyt. It would be nice to have a detailed write up of where our road dollars come from.

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  • a.O June 20, 2008 at 10:57 am

    Truth is Meghan did not have very good arguments against Lars.

    There is no good response to the question, \"How often do you beat your wife?\" except \"F*ck you.\" Meghan did a fantastic job of that.

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  • RyNO Dan June 20, 2008 at 11:03 am

    Economic analysis ?
    Yea, we need a whole lot more of that to fight back with.
    To start, how about an economist that
    can make the case that our country might
    just be better of with a LOWER GDP ?
    That we can do better by spending LESS.
    Help end the \"consumption is better\" myth.
    Yeah ! Great job Meghan. Angel of the week.
    See you all on Sunday !!! --DanS--

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  • Brent June 20, 2008 at 11:03 am

    It\'s hard to understand why someone would be so upset about some roads being shut down for a few hours on a Sunday morning. Roads are often closed for parades, marathons, and other civic events. What\'s the big deal?

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  • erin g. June 20, 2008 at 11:06 am

    Wonderful job, Meghan! I would launch into a diatribe about how dated and ignorant Mr. Larson\'s remarks are - not to mention socially, environmentally, and globally irresponsible - but his utterances are so out of touch that they don\'t deserve that much of my time. Thanks to your masterful handling of this interview, many of Mr. Larson’s listeners are likely having similar feelings about how unwarranted his remarks were.

    One thing: the faulty argument about tax dollars and infrastructure, bikes versus cars, is as tired and out of touch as Mr. Larson himself. As a good law-abiding American and business community member, a large chunk of my monthly salary goes toward myriad taxes, and a portion of that is expected to cover streets and pedestrians ways. I also happen to bike commute nearly every day of the year. It is untrue that only car owners and car users fund roadways and repairs, and therefore an inherent right to dominate them. At the turn of the 19th Century, the cycling craze was at its peak: bikes filled the roads long before automobiles did. The time has come for citizens to reclaim the right-of-ways that were originally intended for all who wish to use them. The car-centric focus that has become the norm cannot sustain itself. Global warming is unquestionably upon us. 30% of children in the U.S. are overweight and unhealthy. Things have got to change.

    I am proud to be an example of how viable, healthy, and enjoyable a virtually-carfree life can be. I do own my first car ever, but I use it about four times per month. It is not about black and white; there are shades of gray to fit each comfort zone, and it is time for all citizens to reevaluate and determine what works best for them.

    Finally, as for taxes and equality, we bike commuters, pedestrians, and responsible mass transit users will be spending tax dollars in the future to pay for the attempted clean-up of the grandiose mess that those who needlessly overuse cars have imposed upon our environment, community, and world. Thus, Mr. Larson might want to reconsider the platform from which he launches future arguments.

    Erin Greeson
    We are ALL Traffic

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  • Brad June 20, 2008 at 11:06 am

    Remember that Lars is brought to you by Timberline Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge where right now now you can choose from a large stock of gas guzzling pick-ups and SUVs at DRASTICALLY reduced prices! In fact, these rigs are so popular that Chrysler is giving away cards that guarantee you $2.99 gas for the next three years on select models. Why do we have to subsidize your gas bills on these fine motor vehicles? Because they are that good and that eco-friendly!

    Please, for the love of God and country, buy a gas guzzler and keep us from going out-of-business!!!

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  • foote June 20, 2008 at 11:07 am

    One thing i\'ve noticed about the portland area is that it seems like roads are being closed for all sorts of things. Especially during the rose festival.
    I\'m a runner, and it seems like every other weekend during the summer there\'s some event that has Front st to Barbur blvd closed. Every October, the Portland marathon closes almost the entire 26 mile route.
    It doesn\'t seem like a big deal to me anymore, and I\'d bet that most Portland residents would agree - even those who live along frequently closed roads. In fact, during most road races I\'ve done, people hang out on their front porches to cheer runners on. It\'s a pretty cool community feeling.

    Anyway, i don\'t really get why Lars is so upset over six miles for six hours on a Sunday morning, except that the event is being promoted by cyclists. If it was some kind of motorcade, i bet he\'d be all over it.

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  • Austin Ramsland June 20, 2008 at 11:08 am

    That was just brilliant.

    I can\'t imagine what it must have took to go on the radio, know that the person doing the interviewing would abandon all logic and civility, and still be a clear and positive voice for cycling and livable cities.

    Nice work Megan. Will you be leading a \"Ninja-like Interviewing Skills\" workshop anytime soon?

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  • Brad June 20, 2008 at 11:09 am

    Thanks Brent (#21) for pointing out all of the other \"evil\" whacko liberal events that circumvent the freedom of driving that millions of brave Americans made the ultimate sacrifice for.

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  • Brian E June 20, 2008 at 11:12 am

    Lar\'s is a country boy from Tillamook. I don\'t think he\'s tuned into what works in the metro area.

    When ever I listen to him I get a laugh out of his black and white position. All in an effort to get better ratings.

    It\'s sad (he\'s sad) that he doesn\'t use his influence to make things better for us all.

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  • ben June 20, 2008 at 11:13 am

    even though i haven\'t seen lars biking up a hill in lingerie, i\'m pretty sure meghan has him beat from all angles.

    maybe a lil bike porn can show him the error of his ways.

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  • Troy June 20, 2008 at 11:20 am

    It takes some serious self control to keep from calling that buffoon out on his BS. I\'d be infuriated talking to that douchebag... which, of course, would fall right into his trap. Good work, Meghan.

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  • bobcycle June 20, 2008 at 11:23 am

    Lars and others are entertainers not political commentators. They have found a market niche where if you can be aggressively right winged enough you can earn a good living, but you need to maximize the anger you raise in folks. Be absurb, anger the crowd and make a good living. Rush Limbaugh, Lars and David Reinhard are all of the same mold (no pun intended) My advice ignore them. The more attention they get the more money they earn. Peace.

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  • KT June 20, 2008 at 11:33 am

    I loved the \"the weather is an impediment\" thing-- because we all know that summer in Portland has such crappy weather!

    A little sun is an impediment?

    I can understand 95+ degree days and out of shape people overworking themselves... but that\'s people not heeding their limits.

    Lars is such a tool. I don\'t listen to him. Except this interview here.

    He goes for baiting his interviewee, trying to start a fight, and I\'m glad she didn\'t fall into his trap.

    He fosters the \"us vs them\" argument to no good end.

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  • Bob June 20, 2008 at 11:35 am

    The reason that Lars and his ilk are so up in arms with Sunday Parkways is that they don\'t just see this as a one time thing for six hours in a six mile stretch. They are paranoid that this will eventually lead to a world in which they can\'t drive their cars anywhere. And that is horrible because it is their God given right to burn fossil fuels as these please. They make the same tired arguments with light rail, streetcars and anything that isn\'t an automobile. The best way to refute their outdated thinking is to actively participate in a non-auto lifestyle. Take part in the Sunday Parkways, bike commute to work, use TriMet, and limit your use of cars. Show the world that there is a better way.

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  • aaron hayes June 20, 2008 at 11:36 am

    wow, Meghan you are certainly brave to go on this show knowing how poorly you would be treated. Excellent work in not falling for the antagonistic questioning!

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  • Loree June 20, 2008 at 11:37 am

    That\'s the first (and I hope only) time I have ever listened to that show, but it was worth it. Great job keeping the conversation positive, Meaghan.

    It was educational to hear the host\'s opinions about public transport and bicycling. I think it\'s surprising that someone who touts personal freedom could be anti-public transport or anti-bike.

    Anyone living in a car-centered community should know the limits that type of infrastructure poses to personal freedom. Ever wanted to drive across LA to meet friends in the evening? Forget about getting there in under an hour if you\'re meeting around rush hour. And good luck finding parking once you get there.

    The host might argue that they just need more, bigger, and better roads, but at some point you just can\'t have big enough, wide enough, enough enough roads to accomodate a car for every person.

    Public transport gives personal freedom to people who are too young to drive or to people who can\'t drive for whatever reason (sight or physical impairment, for example). For those who can bike, bicycling gives the freedom to go anywhere at any time, and to be able to park close to their destination. Dang, not having a car to park is one of the most freeing feelings there is!

    Anyway, I hope there are more conversations like this to start convincing people that a carfree life, at least in urban areas, isn\'t just some crackpot dream.

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  • Jason P. June 20, 2008 at 11:39 am

    Wow, tough audience! She handled a very hostile interviewer with grace and dignity.

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  • Chad June 20, 2008 at 11:39 am

    The fact that he, and others like him, are so upset about the emergence of the new \"transportation culture\" is proof that we are all doing our job.

    And our job is to keep riding bikes.

    His is to be upset about things.

    (I think he got the fuzzy end of the lolly-pop no mater how many zero\'s are on his paycheck)

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  • Jerrod June 20, 2008 at 11:39 am

    I\'m having a panic attack listening to this guy. I\'m literally shaking and wishing that this \"Lars\" fella would not cause me to shake anymore, thank you very much.

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  • jr June 20, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Also, the people who live in the 6 mile radius are not being denied the right to use their cars, there will be volunteers on hand to help them safely get in and out of the event. Liberty for all.

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  • Moo June 20, 2008 at 11:45 am

    I actually feel sorry for the guy...negative attention is better than none I guess- huh Lars?

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  • N.I.K. June 20, 2008 at 11:45 am

    My advice ignore them. The more attention they get the more money they earn.

    Well, actually, the correct thing to do would be to establish poignant and (where possible) factually verifiable talking points to refute their talking points, because their listeners tend to embrace it all as fact - particularly if the host in question throws around terms like \"mainstream media\" (itself quite laughable; having a large-audience radio show makes a show pretty damned mainstream media to be certain). This way, you can not only cut into their listener base and effect the number of advertisers funding the show through the purchase of commercial slots, but *much more importantly*, you can get people to stop believing absolute B.S. and it turn stop them from making decisions based upon said B.S..

    Really, I think Meghan did a fine job, but if there\'s one point that calls for a tremendous amount of assertiveness, it\'s this last-ditch \"bikers are freeloaders\" garbage: folks, if you pay employment taxes or contribute to property taxes (either directly or through a portion of your rent) and you *DON\'T* drive a car, you are paying more than your fair share. Why no overwhelming \"user pays\" cries among the bicycle community? Simple: most of us understand that our contribution to infrastructure is important because it ensures that roads why might not use ourselves are still available to other people who do stuff that can possibly benefit us. It gets workers to work, which helps ensure the availability of services -- much the same as people who bike to work might be doing things there which people who only drive need. This sort of cooperation is how society friggin\' works.

    And, you know. Don\'t forget the part involving the motorvehicle and oil industry subsidies that make these finger-pointers\' favorite mode of transport possible. Because they sure as hell always *do* forget.

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  • N.I.K. June 20, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Additionally: ever notice how the word \"evil,\" when invoked in instances not involving murder, rape, or other forms of bodily harm, is scarcely more than theatrical hyperbole aiming to mask the fact that the utterer realizes they have no cogent argument?

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  • John June 20, 2008 at 11:58 am

    I like Lar\'s attempt to use age and the need to carry gear against Meghan. She handled that very well.

    I\'m 46 and my attitude is that I\'m getting to old to be sitting in a car, I bike to stay healthy. And obviously Lars chooses to ignore (I don\'t believe he is ignorant) that things like cargo bikes and panniers exist that allow us to carry bulky items.

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  • Chad June 20, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    Jerrod #37...must be your first time hearing the Lars...don\'t worry, the anger you feel will change into pity for him once you realize his words are meaningless to even most of the people listening to him. He is a running joke, even among people who tend to agree with him.

    We all have (or have had) occupations that we are \"trapped\" in due to the circumstances, but can you imagine having a job where you are forced to be angry to make a buck.

    I honestly feel sorry for him and hope that someday he has the sense to realize that his own happiness is worth more a buck made from hatred of people that are different than himself and his listeners.

    We reap what we sow and he\'s got a bumper crop of misery.

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  • mbsf June 20, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    “But see, I don’t deny anybody the use of a bicycle*, in fact I pay for the roads they ride on and they don’t pay for the roads.”

    I as a biker don\'t pay for street? Does he mean I get some of taxes back? Where can I apply? Where do I get a form?

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  • StevenA June 20, 2008 at 12:11 pm

    Also notable for his distortion of \"six *square* miles\" when it\'s actually six linear miles
    .

    (If it were really 6 square miles, at 24 streets per mile, that would cover 288 linear miles of streets! The event planners are not so dense as to keep cars off that much even for 6 linear miles of fun.)

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  • k. June 20, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    A good point to bring up to these right wing crack pots is that the whole car free movement isn\'t being foisted upon them. It\'s being demanded by the market place. The movement away from cars towards alternative modes of transportation is being driven by the free market!! How can they argue against that? It\'s the cost of fuel and maintaining the infrastructure devoted to cars that has society looking for other alternatives. Not to mention all the other ills that comes from having a car centric society. That last thing in the world it is is some commie conspiracy. Stuff that in your pipe and smoke it Lars!

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  • Zaphod June 20, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    Nicely done Meghan. While the guy is completely off base, at least he had the civility to, generally, allow her to finish her thoughts uninterrupted. Meghan made her case extremely well.

    One thing that everyone is focused on is the *content* of the interview. It\'s important to note that mainstream or whatever this is felt compelled to discuss this in the first place.

    In other words, his attempt at refuting the intent of the carfree conference has given more legitimacy to the cause. By not ignoring it and having Meghan speak so eloquently on the subject, seems a win in our column.

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  • SG June 20, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    I loved it when Meagan suggested that the disabled person in a wheel chair roll themselves to church from a designated entry area…giving no consideration for how for that may be. Unbelievable! This sounds like a well planned event, especially given the number of phone calls that came in after the interview was over from business owners and residents who were not notified of the upcoming transportation restriction until they read the article in the Oregonian.
    Too bad we don’t have a dictatorship form of government so we could just make people stop driving their cars. Is that what you really want? Who needs freedom?

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  • JRP June 20, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    These radio shows exist only to fill the space between Gold Bond Medicated Powder and used car commercials and aggravate people enough so that they relax and absorb the pitch.

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  • peejay June 20, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    SG:

    You sound like you really know what you\'re talking about. Perhaps you can name one dictatorship where they took away people\'s cars and forced them to ride bikes. Just one would do, and don\'t say China, because in case you haven\'t realized, they have a huge problem right now with cars, and some particularly stupid solutions, like banning bikes from Shanghai streets recently.

    I thought you liked to call us socialists all the time. Kinda funny, since the biggest socialist spending program is the American highway system, paid for by everybody whether they drive or not, but serving only those who drive cars, with a few bones thrown in for those who don\'t.

    And I\'m sure you were right there with Lars complaining about the ADA, and the \"dictatorial\" requirement to put in handicapped-accessible ramps in privately-owned buildings, so I\'ll take your torch-carrying for wheelchair users with a grain of salt.

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  • Chad June 20, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    SG, I live in North Portland and was given no less than two notices on my front door and at least one notice in the mail.

    If a business or person in North Portland didn\'t hear about it they didn\'t look at the numerous (and very clear) notices.

    (But then again we are talking about KXL listeners...not exactly the brightest bunch)

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  • SG June 20, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    The owner of the Nighthawk Cafe and Lounge along with several other residents called in and stated that he/they were not notified until the article on Tuesday.

    I\'m just passing along what I heard, but you think I\'m not very bright...so consider the source.

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  • Chad June 20, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    My apologies SG...\"not bright\" was a cheap shot.

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  • David Dean June 20, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    I thought Meghan did a fantastic job! Kudos!

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  • N.I.K. June 20, 2008 at 1:34 pm

    Too bad we don’t have a dictatorship form of government so we could just make people stop driving their cars. Is that what you really want? Who needs freedom?

    Oh, that\'s my other other favorite: \"The government shouldn\'t be able to tell us what to do! It\'s my *choice* to drive.\" Okay, pal: stop taking the damned subsidies and pony up in-full for your misplaced notion of \"freedom\".

    No? Other people paid for that stuff \'sides you. Deal.

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  • Oliver June 20, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    North Interstate and Portland Blvd/Rosa Parks way, (the location of the Nighthawk Cafe and Lounge) are both streets where there is two-way traffic lines ACROSS the route of the Sunday Parkways event, at each end, and is nearly geographically the furthest point any point actually on the route.

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  • Jean Reinhardt June 20, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    Well, it sounds like Lars Larson is an America-hating tool of the Saudi royal family who wants nothing more than to sell the US to a bunch of subhuman Islamofascist slime. Ride a bike--the only good Islamofascist is a starving one. Keep air clean and Air-abs poor.

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  • Abbey June 20, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    We are indeed stopping people from traveling ANYWHERE on that day. How evil we are shutting down the only 6 miles of roads in the entire city.

    I love how he starts attacking right after he says that they are running out of time. His argument must be rock-solid if he can\'t even give her time to respond! Oh, and somebody explain to this guy the difference between 6 miles and 6 square miles.

    You mean to tell me that someone over the age of 35 has to get out of their car and WALK? This is why God invented drive-through people! ...I wonder what disabled people do at every single other thing that they drive to, wait in the car? I would bet that they would enjoy a nice day outside just like anyone else. I say get them a hand-powered bike!

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  • Jammers June 20, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    Nice job deflecting the rancor, Meghan! I feel personally obligated to show up to this Sunday\'s event to prove just how dedicated people in Portland are to living car free whenever possible.

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  • ellene June 20, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    Meghan - 1
    Radio Prick - 0

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  • Troy June 20, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    I can\'t possibly go on Sunday now that I know the event is evil. I generally try to avoid supporting evil causes. Thanks for the heads up, Lars!

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  • peejay June 20, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    Jonathan:

    Why is my reply to SG not showing up? I was super respectful. And I soundly beat down his points. Award me the victory please!

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  • Paul June 20, 2008 at 2:33 pm

    Some of us love cycling, commute to work each day on a bike, get our families into riding as much as possible, and still listen to Lars and can agree with much of what he says without being a \'tool,\' or \'brain-drained.\' If you read down the list of posts here, this side sounds just as hostile, intolerant, unforgiving, and ignorant as you claim the other side does.

    The reality is cars aren\'t going away any time soon. 10 years from now, this will still be the conversation/argument on most bike websites. Sure, a few metro area bike friendly cities will have a few more green boxes, bike routes, and Sundays where neighborhoods are blocked off for a bit, but even if gas hits $10 a gallon, you won\'t see cars going away.

    Learning to share the road, that\'s really the goal.

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  • SG June 20, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    Peejay...you\'re right...you won.

    I hate the ADA, handicapped people, and everything we provide them with.

    So Jonathan...give him a gold star.

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  • kg June 20, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    I just went to this worthless POS website and he has a picture of a group cyclists getting ploughed into on the homepage.

    It links to the story http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23803464-2,00.html) but I don\'t think the message he is trying to convey is sympathy or outrage.

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  • Cøyøte June 20, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    Meghan did a nice job of not getting sucked in by person who makes his living by sucking people into stupid arguments. I wish I was that composed at 25.

    Larson also deserves a little credit for showing reasonably polite manor, for what must seem to him a truly ridiculous idea. A car-free future is hard to get you brain around at first. Frankly, it took me years to see it as more than a crackpot idea.

    It is too bad that Larson did not do his homework. He obviously wanted to talk about the Sunday Parkway event. I wonder if he even realized that people came from all over the world for the car-free conference?

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  • Chad June 20, 2008 at 3:19 pm

    Paul,

    Good points as I just talked to my Dad in rural Minnesota and he said nobody there is driving any less due to the higher gas prices...and most everybody there drives big-ol-pickups because they need them for farm work.

    It\'s important to realize that life outside of Portland is much different. The bike is the answer for maybe just 5-10% of the people who live out there and raise the food we all eat. The cars are not going away.

    (But I seriously doubt many bike commuters listen to Lars...kinda goin\' with my gut on this one)

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  • bIKE pUNK June 20, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    Meghan you rock, they couldn\'t have picked a sweeter person to take him on. HA HA gettin a little pissy don\'t worry Lars cars won\'t be a problem soon!

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  • T Williams June 20, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    Paul @ #63,

    See, it\'s like a backlash that any one group would produce against anything said group collectively dislikes. Or something.

    Lars has a very public pulpit that he uses daily to deliberately spread misinformation and contempt, all in the name of profit.

    It may be hypocritical of those (me included, I guess) to bash those who bash, but for the sake of moral relativity, \"we\" don\'t generally spread \"hate & discontent\".

    It\'s that viewpoint (or lack of) that allows me to be intolerant of intolerance. But Lars isn\'t just intolerant; he\'s a strong contender for causing what is \"wrong\" in both Portland and our country.

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  • becky June 20, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    These radio shows exist only to fill the space between Gold Bond Medicated Powder and used car commercials and aggravate people enough so that they relax and absorb the pitch.

    You think Gold Bond would love to have more cyclists listening to their commercials!

    http://www.powdermyequipment.com/

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  • Gary Mac June 20, 2008 at 4:41 pm

    Just keep living by example, smile at the opposition, who have every right to their opinion. Participate, ride and walk as often as possible (I\'ve been carfree six of the last eight years, and hell, I\'m from Los Angeles). Lots of folks are going to need our help when the time comes for them to abandon the petroleum coffins...

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  • El Seven June 20, 2008 at 5:12 pm

    Actually Jonathon, he doesn\'t prevent people from riding their bikes, bad car drivers do. And people who are willing to drive are able to cover wider distances to get that oh so perfect job that a cyclist or even a public transportation user could never get to. Which just makes for better payroll and income taxes and a better economy and is the only reason this country rolls in wealth. So, the car drivers really are paying more into the system through fluidity. And you say you\'re not a bike activist, eh? Nice save but I\'m not buying it.

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  • kg June 20, 2008 at 5:44 pm

    Cars aren\'t going away. The way we have used them is.

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  • a.O June 20, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    \"[P]eople who are willing to drive are able to cover wider distances to get that oh so perfect job that a cyclist or even a public transportation user could never get to. Which just makes for better payroll and income taxes and a better economy and is the only reason this country rolls in wealth.

    If that were true, then Europeans (EU) would not have a higher standard of living than Americans and use 1/3 of the gasoline. So you\'re simply wrong. Nice try.

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  • edukator June 20, 2008 at 6:07 pm

    Anyone else notice the cycling accident photo on Lars\' website? larslarson.com ?

    It\'s in the slideshow on the right... here\'s the link to the horribly graphic picture - http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23803464-2,00.html

    I couldn\'t find anything that gave context to why this picture is in the site\'s slide show...

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  • felix June 20, 2008 at 6:30 pm

    Lars is coming to the Zoobomb Century. He was just angry because both events were on the same day. He has vowed to be this years Zoobomb Centurion!

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  • Donna June 21, 2008 at 1:15 am

    Well, it sounds like Lars Larson is an America-hating tool of the Saudi royal family who wants nothing more than to sell the US to a bunch of subhuman Islamofascist slime. Ride a bike--the only good Islamofascist is a starving one.
    I was thinking along these lines myself.

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  • David Feldman June 21, 2008 at 7:04 am

    How about starting a rumor that Lars is himself a closet cyclist? He lives near me in Vancouver--I\'ll swear on Tullio Campagnolo\'s tombstone that I\'ve seen him riding.

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  • John Russell June 21, 2008 at 8:20 am

    Lars sounds like enough of an ass just reading his responses. The douche-factor more than doubles when you actually listen to the thing.
    Props to her for staying so positive the entire time and not falling for his traps. I\'m not trying to fault her, but if we had someone there who knew all of the facts (mode share %, amount of roads paid by cyclists, etc.) I think he would have been in serious trouble.

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  • meghan June 21, 2008 at 11:15 am

    i’m exhausted. it’s been a long week since my (ahem) run in with an aggressive driver (something i’m still dealing with). nevertheless, it was a delight to host this conference so that i might be in the presence of The Experts, learn from them, and thereby gain clout against the lars larsons of the future. hopefully, gil penalosa was an inspiration to those who were fortunate enough to make it to the conference on tuesday. mr. penalosa embodies three key strengths that make him an ideal spokesman for the carfree movement. 1) he’s professional and composed but a delight to speak with 2) he’s well educated on a hot topic and 3) he has experience. though i walked (biked) away from this conference with a few new statistics under my belt, i am still by no means an expert.

    my interview with lars larson was not the only time this week i found myself in the line of fire because of sunday parkways—something i am even less educated on. it’s unfortunate that multiple media outlets wooed me into interviews about an international conference (something i had confidence in speaking on) and then hammered me with questions about an event i was too busy to help plan. i see myself as a spokeswoman for the carfree movement, yes, but sunday parkways is a large happening which i simply had no part in planning. as the city of portland plugged away to present portland with our first ever ciclovia (*thank you*), the towards carfree cities coordinators worked hard to provide people with the opportunity to participate in a conference where people might find the tools and passion to move towards streets less dependant on cars. though i proudly support the sunday parkways event which i’ll will be lucky enough to participate in tomorrow (i’ll be taking time off of work to be out in the streets at 6 am volunteering), i’m a little embarrassed that the more conservative radios focused on the towards carfree cities media contact (me) to unleash their frustrations with the sunday parkways. though the conference is honored to promote sunday parkways, i know about as much as any other bikeportland.org reader might.

    that being said, there is no excuse for my ignorance. i may never be a fact toting wonderwoman on the subject of alternative forms of transportation, but mr. larson did well to remind me that we all need to do better to educate ourselves on the things we are passionate about. though jonathan maus ought to be commended for his efforts to educate us on all the subjects that he does, it is up to us to educate ourselves.

    i am thrilled so many seem to believe i’ve successfully represented the first of mr. penalosa’s strengths. due to my previous experience as an amateur lobbyist, i found myself disillusioned by people who arm themselves with facts as ammunition. for years i’ve let my frustrations with past political experience discourage my perusal of hard facts. i felt like the conservatives and the liberals were both lying to me concerning several subjects i am passionate about. i realized early on that just because somebody can store a good fact away to sling at people who do not believe the same things (much like my grandfather had a good joke for every situation) does not mean that person has checked their facts. even the most well-meaning of us can harm our movement with radical, biased or ill-informed facts.

    i attempted to supplement my lack of numbers and quotes by getting involved in the bike community. i started to gain experience. i jumped in and planned a conference with The Experts. i know now, thought, that in order to have a successful movement i cannot just ride on the charm, wit (*grin*) and experience.

    now that i trust in my (amazing!) experiences, it is time for me to better educate myself. i will do my best to go to non-biased, reliable sources. i encourage all of you to use my experience as example. i may have the wit and charm mr. larson is lacking, but if i were to have fallen into a battle of the facts with unchecked and equally as ridiculous sounding facts, i would have been no better than he.

    thank you for your support, and i look forward to seeing you on sunday.

    m.

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  • e June 21, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    There is a LEGION of soldiers like Lars who are counting on and coddling a numb and frightened population into staying alienated and terrified inside their metal boxes and reaching deep into their pockets to support the notion that we are in imminent danger from chaos.

    Let\'s watch and see how the Republicans play that card in this coming election...it terrifies ME to think about why they might pull at the last minute to make people scared enough to keep them in power...

    Meghan\'s response to Lars: courage, steadfastness and kindness... let\'s hope, is equally effective..

    hopping down now...
    e

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  • Coffee Nate June 21, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    First of all, I apologize for the late post. I hope this isn\'t faux pas to post after Meghan; I, just now, got here and wanted to drop my two-cents worth.

    Paul / Chad made good points illustrating the difference between Portland and most everywhere else in the US. After living in Utah for a couple of years, I am extremely grateful to be once again living in such a progressive, open, and friendly atmosphere as Portland still offers, despite the affects of gentrification and \'californication\'.

    Jonathan, I second tonyt (I think I\'m \'thirding\' or \'fourthing\' it). It would be great to have an article that would, \"refute the \"drivers pay for the roads\" thing. A nice point-by-point, with good summaries of what money comes from where would be nice.\" It should also be remembered that \'bicycle roads\' require comparatively low maintenance, as compared to \'car roads\'.

    Meghan, thank you for your fabulous representation and for your wonderful remarks about the folly of fact-based battle. May we all learn to be more like your Grandfather, handy with a joke; but slow to throw facts at our enemies (I hope I represented your note about your Grandfather correctly?).

    Lastly, while I could not agree more that listening to Lars and / or Bush is much like, \"sticking an ice pick in my ear - and then banging my head sideways against a wall\", I agree with those who have expressed that we should not hate on Lars Larsons of the World;, rather, let\'s collectively hope / pray / meditate for their awakening, while we continue lighting the path. Our enemies will someday be our greatest allies, and we will have gained new friends.

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  • Elly Blue June 21, 2008 at 6:15 pm

    Meghan, you\'re my hero!

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  • ian June 21, 2008 at 9:56 pm

    Chad,
    You might want to take a look at the NYTimes, Washington Post, Atlanta Journal, LA Times, and Chicago Trib. In the last week each one has run a story about how public transportation overwhelmed because record numbers of people are getting out of their cars and taking buses, trains and bikes. Your father is wrong.

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  • El Seven June 22, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    AO, by \"better quality of life\", are you talking about the time before WWI, after WWII or the interim in between? The simple fact is, the only reason that area isn\'t a German speaking province of relative stability is because of US wealth and military might, brought on by the freedom to do what you want and get where you want by the way you want (some call that freedom). But if Europe is such a great place, why not go [back] there?

    And China doesn\'t have a car problem, they have a problem with self righteous Americans telling them that they can\'t pollute to achieve the same level of prosperity that America has, only because America got there first.

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  • pkoonce June 22, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    It took a lot to listen to that guy. I am not sure whether I can thank you for that :)

    Lars had to drive 15 minutes, that\'s brutal, the poor guy.

    Why is he worried about weather in December, it\'ll be warmer soon!

    Taking an entire neighborhood, oh yeah, people were really upset... Having just got back, I think there was a lot of happy neighbors.

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  • travis June 22, 2008 at 7:04 pm

    lars=tool.

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  • dan June 22, 2008 at 11:09 pm

    ian,

    chad seems to be referring to rural minnesota, which is probably not served by any decent form of public transit.

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  • bjorn June 23, 2008 at 12:47 am

    I assume lars is also actively campaigning against the rose festival:

    http://www.rosefestival.org/events/street_closures.shtml

    Many events involve street closures, in fact you can with the consent of your neighbors close your street for a block party and there isn\'t even a fee:

    http://www.portlandonline.com/auditor/index.cfm?a=40975&c=31911

    I don\'t really understand why an event that unlike the rose parade attempted to avoid closing any major street and instead closed low traffic side streets is even controversial. Not only that but since this event was free it was far less exclusionary of the tax payer than other events which regularly wall off parts of the public space in Portland to create pay to play areas. If Lars is going to be against street closures the bridge pedal would seem a more logical target than this free event which bent over backwards to inconvenience motorists as little as possible while still occurring within the city of Portland.

    Bjorn

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  • JH June 23, 2008 at 12:08 pm

    Email I sent to Lar Larson\'s boss.

    Do you enjoy seeing people...being killed and maimed?

    Why does KXL show a nasty bike/car crash on Lars\' web site? Does he think it\'s funny that someone was killed in that crash? I notice all the other screen shots that are posted are of things that are of interest to him (his deer hunting trip, cutting down a tree in his yard, Political Statements, etc) so why does he feel (or KXL for that matter) that he needs to show cyclists being run over by a car?

    Maybe we should ask his advertisers how they feel about his web site showing a human being being killed by a drunk driver? I listen to Lars at times and you can tell he hates cyclists, I\'m sure most of his listeners know that Lars thinks this is funny and the cyclists in some twisted way got what they deserve. Why would someone show a picture of people being killed and maimed along with pictures of personal interest and person enjoyment? He talks about his joy of pulling a stump out his yard and his wife getting her first Deer, then directs his listeners to view his web site pictures that show his other interests.

    The driver was an American that was driving drunk, the driver plowed into a pack of bike racers. The road was close for the race and all permits and fees were secured. Does he think drunk driving is ok as long as the driver kills a cyclists? Do his advertisers agree with Lars\' perception that it\'s ok to kill a cyclist if you are driving drunk?

    Please take the shot of the cyclist being killed off of Lars\' web site..Now!

    JH

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  • Todd June 23, 2008 at 12:35 pm

    Great work Meghan, you didn\'t let him beat you. Although Lars was under the impression it was 6 SQUARE miles, which it wasn\'t it was LINEAR miles and people were free to go in and out of the circle as they liked.

    This guy brings up the core points the anti-bike community uses against bikes. We should all work to come up with effective answers to these questions and educate people like Lars. This is how we will advance the acceptance and use of bikes.

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  • Todd June 23, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    I boiled down Lars\' questions and this is what I came up with. You can bet every question he has is echoed by thousands of his followers. I personally have my own answers for them and I think each biker should too, moreover, the bike community and city planners should too:

    -Denying people the individual freedom to use their car is wrong.
    -Transit is much slower than driving (e.g. 15 min. driving vs. 1:45 on transit).
    -People don’t want to bike in bad weather.
    -You can’t carry heavy/bulky equipment on a bike.
    -Biking isn\'t practical for older people.
    -Bikes don’t pay taxes for roads.

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  • Brian June 23, 2008 at 1:41 pm

    Lars is a less polished, less professional version (is this possible? yeah, afraid so) version of Bill O\'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh, not someone to be taken seriously on any level. Facts do not boost his ratings, rants and confrontation do. Mainstream journalism is dead in America, it is nothing more than \"infotainment\".

    As for the cars vs bikes argument, well, the times are changing. I have seen many of my coworkers, folks whom I would never have expected to see on a bicycle, using some combination of mass transit and bicycling to get themselves to work every day. As others have said, it\'s a shame it took financial hardship to make this happen, but hey, whatever works.

    I am proud of the city of Portland. Yes, we have some work to do, but compared to most US cities, we are way ahead of the curve. Let\'s keep at it, we are making good progress :).

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  • Graham June 23, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    It\'s so tempting to squabble with an idiot like this, lowering oneself to his level, but that\'s pretty much what he wants. Resist! Let him flop around in his mud-wrestling pit all by himself.

    A better approach might be the way a good parent deals with a brat: no, you\'re can\'t have everything your way. I\'m afraid this is just the way it\'s going to be. Deal with it.

    Or better yet, just be nice in the face of the bullying, like Meghan was. Good job, Meghan!

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  • Opus the Poet June 23, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    If you think the picture of the cyclists getting killed is offensive (and I do) you should hagn out there for a while and see what else there is. There is a link that purports to be to assist the lady that got mugged recewntly on the TriMet, but if you click it it takes you to a Holy Land tour site. There is a graphic that rates the Presidential candidates by how Communist they are (in Red Stars embellished with the Hammer and Sickle) and even McCain is Too Commie for this guy!

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  • John Fitzgerald June 24, 2008 at 9:13 am

    Hi Lars,
    I listened to your interview with Meghan Sinnott on the BikePortland websome time ago, on the concept of Sunday Parkways in Portland Oregon. I hope this contact is not dated, but as a cyclist and cycling advocate in Ireland, I was appalled at your \"jugular\" approach to the lady during your interview. In my opinion, you lost all objectivity in your line of questioning and contaminated it with your anti-bike bias. As a media
    professional,impartiality is fundamenal and there was not a shred of impartiality in your thinly veneered attack on this lady. You are obviously pro-autimobile and you seem to be saying that thisevent is denying people the \"right\" to drive their automobiles. Let meput that stright for you. Firstly, people have the \"right\" to clean,breathable air and a safe, healthy environment to live and work in. They have the \"right\" to safe passage and the safe passage of their kids to their destinations. They have a right to a future. All these fundamental, incontestable and irreducable rights have beendenied to them by the presence of dangerous, polluting automobiles onthe streets and public places. Cities and towns across the world have become people hostile, unsafe and reduced to a burning polluted nightmare because of auto domination. Every square foot of what was oncepublic space, has been appropriated in the name of this destructive modeof transport. The funny things is, driving an automobile is not a \"right\" but aprivilege. Rights only come with responsibilities and it is time thatautomobile owners took responsibility for the massive social andenvironmental damage their \"assumed\" rights are doing. The privilege to drive an automobile has never become a modern amendment to the \"rightsof man\" and it never will. Cities and towns all over the worlkd have begun changing their relationship with the car and begun a path of redemption from\"autogeddon.\" These are intentional moves by municipal aurthorities to usurp
    traffic \"saturation\" and replace it with \"true civilisation.\"

    They aim to \'\'plan and develop their cities in accordance with the needs andwishes of the people who live in them and not for the convenience of thevehicles that pass through them.\" True liberty is being rid of the menace of the autromoibile. Being rid of the \"death gas\" that pervades our streets and invades our livingrooms 24/7 everyday. Being able to walk and cycle safely with family and friends without being hit by a \"solvent spraying juggernaut\" or petrolhead junkie. Being free of weekly carnage count from auto fatalities that outstrips all modern world wars. That is what we must liberate ourselves from in order to have true liberty.

    I wish you and the Sunday Parkways all the best. Thank You.P.S. I would like you to read this out on your show Lars. And could you remove that offensive graphic on your web depicting some lunatic carhead driving into cyclists.It is the heght of bad taste and a sick sociopathic joke.
    John Fitzgerald

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  • Graham June 24, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    Well, I\'ve visited the site, I\'ve seen the picture, and now I find myself disagreeing with my more level-headed comments of a day ago. I\'m sickened that someone would present, front and center, an image of people dying in a way that\'s meant to be humorous. As cyclist, I know I\'m the target of the picture\'s intent. That image is basically a death threat against me and people like me.

    I guess the best I can say is that if someone\'s going to threaten you, it\'s helpful that he does it in such an unambiguous way, so that you know what you\'re dealing with.

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  • Steve Pappert June 25, 2008 at 12:34 am

    It seemed to me that the sunday parkways event did disrupt some trafic, but for the most part trafic was able to get through at all the major intersections with only a minor delay. Also, on the residental streets that made up the route, cars of residents were able to get through, not maybe at the instant they wanted, but were able to come and go. The only thing that I thought was an imposition is that the portland police had to man all the major intersections. I realize this is expensive. all the intersections in question have lights, could they not be programed with a sequence for the events in the future and save the city this burden.

    for me the great thing about the sunday parkways that was different from the other pedalpalooza events was the number of children on the streets. it reminded me that I am able to enjoy riding in this city in large part simply because I am large enough, fast enough, and stuborn enough to make my place in the trafic.

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  • Arem June 26, 2008 at 10:40 pm

    Hello everyone, been reading bikeportland for several months now since moving here last year, selling my car and buying a new bike for myself. I had the pleasure of meeting Ms.Sinnott the other evening during a Pedalpalooza ride. I brought up the interview with her since I recognized the frames for her glasses and was thinking \"Is that...?\" When I brought it up, she had the \"Oh no...\" response, she seemed a bit embarrassed about it and wanted to hear a replay of the interview since she worried about how she actually sounded. I tried to reassure her that she was fine and was glad she didn\'t fall prey to his baiting. She really is a sweetheart and I was glad for the opportunity to talk to her a bit.

    Take care out there.

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  • RexMarx003 November 9, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    Well done Megan. I have not read all the comment (lots of comments!), so this may be a repetitive. An argument I like is as follows:

    Portland has been building roads to the demands of car culture for 100 years. There are a number of people in this community that think there is a better way to build roads for the next 100 years.

    But, many Portlanders cannot visualize that future as it is difficult to experience with all the cars in the way. It is like offering someone that has been eating nothing but spaghetti for the past hundred years a plate of lasagna and saying try this. The next step is asking that person if they want to continue with only spaghetti for another 100 years or would they like some variety going forward.

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  • Clarence Eckerson April 5, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    One thing I never do in discussion with many of the crazies out there, I never say I am anti-car. I always say I am pro-alternatives. I know far too many people that have cars and use them responsibly. So I always point that out. I have friends, family, even my wife uses a car to drive to work since mass transit does not go where she needs to. But when she comes home she parks the car and walks, bikes and takes the subway wherever else she needs to go.

    These people must have tiny brains. They think if you are a driver you drive everywhere (and need to!) They think if you classify yourself as a cyclist you ride everywhere - you never take a bus, you never get in a cab, you never get in a friend's car. The truth is there are all sorts of levels of people out there with all sorts of mode use. For me I probably am 40% walk, 30% bike, 28% transit and 2% in a car. We need to convince these people that it's not one or the other.

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