Subject: Congressmen Attack Walkers, Bicyclists and People Without Cars
On March 12, the US Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a speech:
Where I’ve been in America I’ve been very proud to talk about the fact that people do want alternatives. They want out of their cars; they want out of congestion; they want to live in livable neighborhoods. This is the end of favoring motorized transportation at the expense of non-motorized. We are integrating the needs of bicyclists in federally-funded road projects. We are discouraging transportation investments that negatively affect cyclists and pedestrians. And we are encouraging investments that provide facilities for bicyclists and pedestrians of all ages and abilities.
On March 17, at a meeting of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development:
Ohio congressman Steve LaTourette suggested LaHood was on drugs, dismissed the very idea of bike lanes and derided any change from a car-dependent society. He suggested that environmental sustainability projects have “stolen” $300 million from other programs and attacked LaHood’s encouragement of bicycling.
Iowa congressman Tom Latham said that one biker is one less person paying into the transportation trust fund and said real transportation needs are being “swept aside.”
These two elected officials are extremely important because they are on the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development committee and they decide where billions of tax dollars are spent. Tell the congressmen what you think of their comments. Their staff keep a tally of phone calls, so each call is important and will only take a minute out of your day.
LaTourette DC office: 202-225-5731
LaTourette Painesville office: 440-352-3939
LaTourette Twinsburg office: 330-425-9291
Latham DC office: 866-428-5642
Full report of LaTourette and Latham’s comments here.
Full report of Secretary LaHood’s comments here
In addition to the above two attacks:
– Missouri Senator Bond asked Secretary LaHood, “When did it become the responsibility of the federal DOT to build sidewalks?”
– Oklahoma Senator Inhofe criticized a draft bill as having “focused very heavily on transit, bike paths, and sidewalks.”
– Alaska Senator Begich and South Dakota Senator Thune questioned whether livability is applicable in rural areas.
– Arizona Senator McCain introduced an amendment to a FAA bill that would strip funding for bicycle parking facilities
To find contact information for these and for your elected officials, go to VoteSmart. Make your opinions heard and help build a better America.
To view online, go to: walkroll.com
This makes me want to ride my bicycle just to show the bastards it is a viable transportation choice.
WASHINGTON (CN) – Republicans heaped ridicule on Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood at a Wednesday hearing after LaHood suggested that bicycling and walking are just as good ways to get around as cars. To laughter, Republican House members suggested LaHood was taking drugs, dismissed the very idea of bike lanes and derided any change to a car-dependent society. “What job is going to be created by having a bike lane?” asked Ohio Republican Steven LaTourette.
Read the rest: courthousenews.com.
What jobs? Where do I start? Someone has to construct the bike lane. Someone has to maintain the bike lane. Someone has to design and manufacture the bicycle. Someone has to sell the bicycle at retail to the end consumer. Someone has to maintain the bicycle with service and repair. Someone has to sell the coffee and carbohydrates the cyclist will consume on his or her daily commute.
In short, it isn’t very much different than anything else. The design, manufacture, retail sales, service & repair, and fueling of a transportation vehicle creates economic opportunities.by