Thank you Brock
Those are pretty much my points exactly.
If I run a stop sign and get a ticket, I'm not going to complain. Pay to play or so they say.
But that does not mean that I can't also argue that there is a disproportionate amount of venom aimed at bikers for the same infraction that cars do constantly. Nor does that mean I can't point out what I think is disproportionate punishment. SUV runs red light, bike rolls stop sign = same fine. Yes, it is the current state of affairs and I understand that those are the rules out there right now. But I still think it's whacked.
More than anything, I'm just fascinated by the psychological factors involved in the confrontation. I do think the guy was a cop. But I would bet hard money that he would NEVER have confronted a motorist that way, with his not so subtle threat and profanity.
There is some power dynamic at play there. Perhaps it's as simple as the fact that cyclists are less powerful (no 3,000 lb weapon at hand) and as such it's safer to confront them. I think though that it also has to do with the notion that many motorists have that cyclists are not legitimate users of the road in the first place, lawful behavior or not, and so they have a hair trigger regarding our conduct.