Yeah, we saw it too. A gubernatorial candidate in Colorado is claiming that Denver’s bike sharing program and the city’s participation in an international climate change agreement is “converting Denver into a United Nations community.” He went on, “This is all very well-disguised, but it will be exposed.” The Denver Mayor’s views seem harmless, the candidate says, but “that’s exactly the attitude they want you to have.” Finally, “This is bigger than it looks like on the surface, and it could threaten our personal freedoms.” Bold words. All this because of bike sharing?
Current Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, a cyclist himself, signed into law Complete Streets, 3 foot passing and other key bike-friendly legislation pieces in his tenure. As far as cyclists in Colorado are concerned, the next governor has big (cycling) shoes to fill.
This isn’t the first time this week that bicycling related items were been broken down to partisan politics this week. Our victory in the Livable Communities Act passed a crucial committee vote, but that vote went down on strictly party lines. As we’ve often said, we’re fully bike-partisan. Our work with elected officials through the U.S. Conference of Mayors, National Conference of State Legislatures and the U.S. Congress has ignored the D’s and R’s after elected officials names.
We feel bicycling for fun, fitness and transportation is good for everyone and plenty of liberals and conservatives agree. Though, we could always use more of both speaking up for it. To us, bicycling represents freedom from congestion, freedom from those extra pounds,freedom to live longer, freedom to better know your neighbors (and neighborhood), freedom to spend more money in your local economy and freedom to have a bit of fun every once in awhile. Hardly conspiracy theory material. To claim that bicycling represents anything else is absurd.
Jeff PeelPeel joined the League in March 2008 as a Program Specialist for the Bicycle Friendly Communities program. Peel has a BA in American Studies from the University of Southern Mississippi.
State and Local Advocacy Coordinator