I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned, but I am writing a book. Laboring over paragraphs I occasionally surprise myself with my own genius. Like kop a wallop of this little gem, hot off the keyboard:
Advocates of bicycle transit can easily sabotage their own efforts, if cycling to them is merely a handmaiden to some other agenda. Consider a cycle path advocate with a dominant interest in public health, and how they might react if, for argument’s sake, they saw it was becoming trendy for cyclists to smoke. Never mind the freedom of movement cycling affords, they might prefer people walked more, for example to trains, on which as a bonus they would not be able to smoke. Likewise, promoting cycling out of a concern for global warming, rather than seeing green dividends as a knock-on benefit, could see cycling being abandoned if carbon neutral cars came along—and so much for obesity and traffic congestion if that were to happen. Of these four: (1) cycling for cycling’s sake; (2) public health; (3) environmentalism, and; (4) urban transit, it is only number 1, cycling for cycling’s sake, that if pursued faithfully would inherently yield dividends for the remaining three interest groups. It follows that environmentalists, public health campaigners, and transit planners would ultimately have their own interests better protected, by agreeing to give pre-eminent regard to the needs of cycling, pursued as an end in itself.