Urban Tribe - Ride with your kids in front.

Time for ‘Wheel Team 6’; an elite squad of bike activists

Posted by on November 12th, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Wheel Team 6 in action.
(Graphic: Ethan Jewett)

This morning’s protests of the Jarvis Street bike lane removal in Toronto spurred me to finally publicly share an idea I’ve been daydreaming about for a long time now: An elite squad of bike activists that swing into action and swoop down on cities and towns to defend bicycling.

When I hear about blatant bike injustices around the country, I envision these elite activists parachuting in, documenting the problem, exposing the bad guys, and forcing the change/fix/policy that’s needed.

After sharing the idea on Twitter, local sportswriter Brian Gjurgevich coined the name “Wheel Team 6” in deference to SEAL Team 6, the U.S. Navy SEAL team that took down Osama Bin Laden…

— Are powerful political players manipulating local process and the local media in order to prevent the installation of protected bike lanes around popular park? Call Wheel Team 6.

— Are leaders of a small casino town attempting to prohibit bicycle riding? Call Wheel Team 6.

— Are the police in your town showing complete apathy when it comes to tracking down dangerous drivers who kill and then leave the scene? Call Wheel Team 6.

— Is your Governor so afraid of powerful interest groups and so uninformed about traffic issues that he has opposed attempts to pass a safe passing law? Twice?! Call Wheel Team 6.

— Is your mayor ranting against bicycling and threatening to remove bike lanes? Call Wheel Team 6.

Initial response on Twitter has been positive. Some say they’re ready enlist. Others say we should use Kickstarter for start-up funds. One of our friends, Ethan Jewett, was kind enough to mock up a design for our Wheel Team 6 chopper…

OK, so maybe this is just a fun thought experiment. But, if nothing else, perhaps it provides someone inspiration for a Filmed By Bike project! (Thanks MJ).

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  • Q November 12, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    I have the URL’s should you require them Mr Maus,

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  • wsbob November 12, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    “…in deference to SEAL Team 6, the U.S. Navy SEAL team that took down Osama Bin Laden… ” maus/bikportland

    The Seals hunted down, shot and killed Bin Laden, giving to SEAL Team 6 an extraordinary name familiarity the team wouldn’t otherwise have had. That’s quite the name and deed upon which to build name familiarity and mission for a bike advocacy group.

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  • Kevin November 12, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    Is the chopper pedal powered?

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  • todd November 12, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    I wonder if Nutcase would issue WT6 helmets, in blue with UN insignia and “AGENDA 21” on ’em. http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/02/is-the-un-using-bike-paths-to-achieve-world-domination/252572/

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  • Mike Cobb November 12, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    Yeah, I’ve been dreaming of skydiving with relief-supplies-loaded cargo bike. I’d like to join your team, Jonathan and perhaps expand it’s mission.

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    • Danny November 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm

      You mean expant mission…

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      • Mike Cobb November 12, 2012 at 3:48 pm

        Exactly, thanks. No pants/no problem. I dream of a post-pants planet.

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      • Mike Cobb November 12, 2012 at 3:52 pm

        the revolution will not be wearing pants

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  • Sunny November 12, 2012 at 4:28 pm

    Seal Team Six members are all hardcore republicans. They’d probably shoot the cyclists.

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    • Perry November 13, 2012 at 8:01 am

      You’re sure?

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      • Sunny November 13, 2012 at 11:22 am

        According to Matt Bissonnette, they were all pretty vocal within their group against Obama.

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  • Hugh Johnson November 12, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    Helicopters burn fuel…doesn’t seem very “Portlandia” to me.

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  • Peter November 12, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    This group would definitely have some Bike Fridays and some Portland Design Works swag!

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  • Nicholas Caleb November 14, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    Don’t underestimate the power of getting a bunch of ordinary people together, in the streets, and making noise. This is especially powerful if you have clear demands. It doesn’t have to be a dream.

    Bike policy just came under attack in Portland. Mobilize!

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  • anon1q2w3e4r5t November 14, 2012 at 9:37 pm

    — Is your transportation department going to launch a bike sharing program in your city? Call Wheel Team 6.

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  • Scott Mizée December 16, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Nice reference to this article in relation to the new Bloomberg Associates team, J. 🙂

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