Happy Juneteenth, the (now national) holiday that marks the day in 1865 when word of the Emancipation Proclamation made its way to Texas and the last remaining Black slaves in America were finally set free. Learn more about it here.
Here are the most notable stories and other items our writers and readers came across in the past seven days.
For your consideration: In the latest sign that the utilitarian e-bike era is upon us, retail juggernaut REI has released a new “lifestyle” line “designed to help make it easier for people to hop on and go.”
Cycling history: If you haven’t heard about Jody Rosen’s excellent new book on the history of the bicycle, Two Wheels Good, I can highly recommend it! Check out this review from The Economist for a taste of its scope.
Traffic enforcement for whom? Chicago-area activist Olatunji “Oboi” Reed says the architects of Vision Zero were mostly white people who don’t fully appreciate how unjust and racist American policing practices are and instead of focusing on law enforcement we should double-down on building safer streets.
Bike lane bounty: The city traffic commission in Austin, Texas has approved a policy that would allow people to report cars that blocking bike lanes and receive 25% of the resulting infraction.
France vs U.S.: There are clear, tangible reasons why traffic deaths have gone down in France while they’ve gone up in the U.S. including lots of automated speed enforcement cameras, large carfree zones, and so on.
Bad air impacts: A glimpse into what happens when emissions are allowed to reach epidemic levels is when pollution reduces life expectancy by about 10 years like it’s doing in two states in India.
Homelessness progress: Houston has done a very admirable job reducing the amount of people who are homeless. One reason for their success is getting the nonprofit sector to speak with a united voice.
End the car pilot: Frightening research estimates that people are failing to control their cars and crashing them into buildings at a rate of about 100 times per day.
Thanks to everyone who sent in links this week.