'Share the Road' is a message for motorists. The main purpose, of course,
is to diminish the prevailing notion that roads are by and for cars, and to
instill the understanding that cyclists are vehicles. (The side effect that
cyclists figure this out is a nice bonus).
If defensive biking and walking advice, and -- worse -- admonishments to
cyclists to 'behave well' or the message, 'It is your responsibility to be
visible', are mixed with 'share the road' the fundamental purpose is at best
obscured and the audience is confused. Motorists are invited to enumerate
the many reasons why cyclists and walkers are at-fault.
This message confusion is illustrated within the initial posting. In the
beginning, defensive walking/cycling are lumped together under the heading
"About the Share The Road messages". Later in the post, a category for
"Lights and Light Clothing PSAs" emerges. I say this bluntly to help the
cause: If the key person in the state's key advocacy group is confused
about what the message is, then you can be sure that Joe Six-Pack is not
going understand that muddled message either.
The masses are motorists. Focus on getting them to realize that they must
share the road. Save the defensive cycling advice for more targeted means
of communication. And don't confuse the road sharing message with
hairsplitting specifics like '3 foot passing separation is adequate' -- a
notion which itself deserves a lot of debunking.
Peter K. Duval +1 (802) 899-1132
51 Hanley Lane fax: 899-1132
Jericho, Vermont 05465
VTBIKEPEDPOLICY-L: The Vermont Bicycle and Pedestrian Policy Discussion List
Subscription control: http://list.uvm.edu/archives/vtbikepedpolicy-l.html.
For help: email [log in to unmask] with the word "help" in the message body.