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By Brigitte Taylor
I love the idea of cycling all over town and the trend to encourage people (and currently women, in particular, to ride bikes.
Ideas are great, but as a result of biking in Mission Valley, Old Town, North Park, Downtown, College Area, City Heights and various parts of the city, I definitely have a new take on what it means to share the road with vehicles. I used to ride my bike frequently until I was knocked off by a driver. Thankfully, I was not injured but after that, I limited my rides to mountain biking and bike paths where road sharing is not an issue.
I decided that it was time to start riding on city streets again last year. Riding my bike on El Cajon Boulevard, I must admit, can be daunting. Depending on where you are riding, some of the lanes are so narrow that the cars parked on the street will position a cyclist in the middle of the lane for vehicles meaning that we literally must share the same lane with vehicles. The traffic is quite rapid and, in my experience, people are fairly hasty and do not drive in a manner or speed that promotes comfortable riding of a bike in the middle of the street. I noted the streets have designated lanes for the bikes; however, these lanes are in or near the same spaces along with vehicles. While I have noted more courtesy among drivers, I still think there should be a designated area specifically for bicycles.
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By Dave Zirin / The Nation / January 21, 2013
As the United States celebrates the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., with the swearing-in of this country’s first African-American president, there will no doubt be commentary on the great gap between ceremony and reality. It’s the gap between the public spectacle of President Barack Obama’s inaugural oath—sworn on one of Dr. King’s Bibles no less—and a country still ravaged by what King called “the giant triplets of racism, militarism and economic injustice.”
In addition to the inaugural festivities, this weekend was also marked by a spectacle that will rival or exceed the inauguration in passion and interest: the National Football League playoffs. NFL football, by a country mile, is the most popular sport in the United States. It also stands as a living monument of the distance we still must travel to slay King’s “giant triplets.” I write this, in full disclosure, as someone who follows the sport religiously, but struggles to not be blind to the politics the NFL pumps through its play.