I recently wrote a post titled “Bikes And Transit – Peanut Butter and Jelly?” The obvious implication is that they go rather well together. In fact, the more I ride MY bike for recreation, exercise, to run to the store, etc., the more I like it.
I can recall MANY years ago when I was first allowed to ride my bike to grade school. Man, was that cool! I got to go buy a new lock, my mom and dad gave me a few “safety” talks, and, knowing my mom, she probably cried because I was “growing up so fast.” I remember it like it was yesterday.
When I was a little kid I rode my bike everywhere. I rode for miles to visit friends, go play in the park, and, yeah, to just explore my ‘hood. Being a kid, I didn’t look at riding my bike as a way to save mom and dad gas money – I wasn’t trying to save the earth, I was just having fun. There can be an argument made that “times were different” back then. In a way, I get it. I’m pretty sure I never wore a helmet when I rode my bike, and I’m pretty sure my teachers or school weren’t all that worried that I would sue them if I did something stupid like, oh, pull out in front of a car. I’m not really sure that different and new are always the best choice. Heck, I survived and I have some great memories that will last a lifetime.
Today, I live in a very bike friendly city. In fact, according to the Tempe Bicycle Action Group, Tempe was named as one of the top 20 “bike friendly cities” in America. Our neighbors to the north of us in Scottsdale also cracked the top 20. I know that our friends in downtown Phoenix have been doing a lot to raise awareness of bike friendly streets and neighborhoods, and I know that MANY people living, working, and playing in our “city within cities” enjoy biking to all kinds of destinations.
Bikes Banned at Gilbert School
So I was a bit surprised to see a headline this am titled “Gilbert charter school Edu-Prize bans bikes.” I said, “What?” That seems kind of strange. Many kids love to ride their bikes to school. It’s fun, good exercise, and, well, I can think of a LOT of reasons for allowing kids to ride. I just wanted to see why they are NOT allowed to ride. I did find this beauty from a school administrator…
“The safety concerns that led to the policy change have included "one child weaving between cars" and children riding on sidewalks and putting pedestrians "in danger" because "the streets are not safe to ride on," said Barbara Duncan, the school’s chief operating officer”
When I was a kid, if I would have been caught weaving between traffic, my dad would have kicked my ass.