According to a 2002 survey sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, 27.3% of Americans over the age of 16 ride bikes. And according to the City Clerk’s office, there are 1.6 million registered voters in the City of Los Angeles.
Which means that roughly 400,000 voters in Los Angeles ride bikes; maybe more, maybe less. But lets be conservative, and put the number at over 300,000.
[T]here are more cyclists registered to vote in Los Angeles than the total number of people who voted for all the candidates for mayor combined.
Now consider this.
In the city’s last mayoral election, only 17.9% of registered voters cast ballots; that’s just 285,000 people. In other words, even by the most conservative estimate, there are more cyclists registered to vote in Los Angeles than the total number people who voted for all the candidates for mayor combined.
Which makes bicyclists one of the largest voter blocks in Los Angeles — and potentially one of the most powerful, capable of deciding who governs our city, our county and our state.
That’s the purpose we envision for the League of Bicycling Voters Los Angeles.
A countywide organization dedicated to harnessing the power of the cycling community to influence the electoral process. An organization that will host forums and debates to get candidates on the record for their stands on biking issues, endorse and support bike-friendly candidates and propositions, and hold elected officials accountable for keeping their promises.
[An] organization dedicated to harnessing the power of the cycling community to influence the electoral process.
This group is not liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican. It does not represent any one group or style of cycling. It represents you, and thousands of other bicyclists in Los Angeles County, to help ensure safer streets and a more bike-friendly community for all us.
Click here to join the conversation of the Google Group and help us form the new League of Bicycling Voters LA. See our introductory announcement and join our Facebook group to stay in the loop and spread the word.
9 thoughts on “Consider this your wake up call.”
This whole thing has got me really excited. With the real work being put in by so many different bicyclists, I feel like we’re about to really change the way transportation and politics are done in L.A.
Last election I would have loved to have a list of the candidates and where they stand on bike issues.
Good plan. Safer streets for bikes.
Are you actively seeking attention from casual/party bikers aka midnightridazz?
Robert: A cyclist is a cyclist is a cyclist, noon or midnight, party cyclist of burial cyclist, come ye all, come ye all, and let us transform the vague sense of euphoria of community into the political power of community, and let us work towards the sweet taste of political success in the name of doing the right thing
Where is the ‘Responsible Cycling’ section of this site? As a long-time, long-distance cyclist, I’m often appalled at the bad behavior that I see as standard, at least here on the westside:
– blowing through Stop signs.
– ‘stopping’ at Stop signs w/o unclipping. aka The Balancing Act/Velodrome wannabe
– driving on the street against traffic
– changing from cyclist to pedestrian back to cyclist, without dismounting and walking the bike. Ex: “left turn at intersection” by riding on right side, then turning left across traffic into crosswalk, then right into opposite corner’s crosswalk, then left when at right side of cross-street.
– No lights at night, no signals ever.
– Velodome bikes in traffic. aka fixees. Sorry, but if there’s no mechanical brake, you’re a fool and a hazard.
– And with all the pedestrians, kids, handicaps, aged, you could not PAY me to be stupid enough to ride on a sidewalk, especially against traffic on the related road, especially at speed through crosswalks. To ride on the sidewalk is to me, by definition, operation of a vehicle in “willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons,” especially myself. Maybe there’s a reason it’s not called a “sideride.”
These behaviors by stupid riders make me less safe, because drivers just assume that either there are no rules for bicyclists, or that, unlike them, no one ever enforces them. So they treat us as hazards and idiots, as well as competitors for road space.
So whether or not I follow the rules when I ride tomorrow on a fiftyfive mile trainer from Santa Monica to PV and back, the jerks that blow stop signs, and weave through traffic, tar me with their incompetence.
You bring up a good point about policing cyclists, but I personally feel that is terrible idea. Providing bicycle facilities greatly reduces the frequency of sidewalk riding and other dangerous behaviors.
Running stop signs is against the law, but in states that have made it legal there has been no increase in deaths nor injuries. I feel that the law in California is on the wrong side of physics.
When a bike rider does something erratic on the road, you may feel they make you look bad, you may feel that they are putting their own lives in danger – and you’re probably right! The thing that softens my judgment of other cyclists is the relative risk to others that a cyclist poses as opposed to an automobile. There is no contest in measuring the impact of a an erratic driver and a foolhardy cyclist – the car is the killing machine, the cyclist either an idiot, a masochist, or both.
Marketing the notion of bicycling as a normal, every day activity, requires a focuson the positive aspects of the activity. How many car commercials show the bloody deaths of those aged 0 to 24 (the #1 cause of death for this age group is automobile related crashes)? If you advertise the danger and risks of cycling, your campaign will discourage cyclists – and one of the surest ways to make cycling safer is to increase our numbers!
I greatly enjoyed and completely agree with Joe, Michael Cahn and Josef Bray-Ali’s comments.
What happened to this? It’s November 1st, 2010. I don’t see a list of recommendations on what this “Bike Voters League” thinks of the coming election, which waddyaknow is to-morrow.
Is this yet another infamous “Michael Cahn” project that fails to become anything more than a whimsy of imagination?
This is disappointing so far, to say the least. I hope for more from you.
Comments are closed.