Is Rob Ford waging a war on bikes?
It’s always fun when news agencies outside of Toronto pay attention to the city’s political scene, but this BBC clip about Toronto’s “war on bikes” just makes us sad. Setting the tone with some tense background music, the two-minute video features a series of Torontonians talking about how dangerous it is to get around on a bike in the city (which is certainly true) and placing all of the blame on Rob Ford for being “awful.” Since Ford refused repeated interview requests, the BBC did the next best thing: used old, grainy footage of him railing against cyclists and saying “it’s their own fault” if they get killed. And while the article accompanying the video gives a brief shout-out to council’s decision to upgrade and separate some existing bike lanes, it’s mostly a rebuke of the city’s cycling infrastructure, with Ford cast as the sole villain—even though the city’s pre-Ford track record on cycling was also spotty. We agree that the Ford administration, with its “war on the car” rhetoric, hasn’t been a cyclist’s best friend, but we’re not sure rallying beneath the “war on bikes” banner is the way to get Toronto’s inadequate infrastructure improved. It’s likely to create more hostility, not bike lanes. Watch the video [BBC News] »