Jan 30 2009

MyLife: Critical Mass Sucks. If You Ride With Them, So Do You

Several douche-bag members of Critical Mass stopped my wife and I from making a turn on the street today on our way home from work. We weren’t attempting to drive through their bike rally, mind you. We were just driving near them (They were actually blocking traffic in all four directions). That was enough to prompt several of their moronic contingent to put hands on our vehicle and grin at us like coked-out chimps.

When I got out of the car to get them to stand aside, they only leaned in closer to stop us from proceeding. Then one pushed me.

I have no intention of charging him with assault. But I do charge him with the offense of being a bullying loser who wouldn’t have the guts to try the same thing if he didn’t have a contingent of his friends to back him up.

Critical Mass is not traffic. It’s a collection of selfish jerks. And in case you think I’m just an isolated crank, here are a few other opinions I’ve gathered quite easily from Critical Mass’ own Facebook page:

Kasia

I’m all for bikes, I think bikes are sweet, I have a bunch myself. I’m all for going green, that’s awesome too. But blocking off Stanley Park and the bridge is the dumbest, stupidest thing ever. It just makes motorists hate cyclists more, not to mention half the city is trapped in traffic. People can’t get home to pick up their children from school, make dinner for their families, or just get to whever they were going without having to sit in traffic for 2 hours. And what’s worse, you don’t represent the real roadies: the ones who wear helmets, abide by the law, and yet still get treated like crap because all you people have lost all respect for cyclists in Vancouver. So do everyone a favour, and display your movement in such a way that yields positive results and does not make the whole city angry.

And this one from a guy who I like because he has the same name as me (different spelling, though)…

Jonathan

If Critical Mass does not stop doing the Lions Gate Bridge I will never attend again.
Shutting down the bridge for over an hour is the most stupid obnoxious and cruel thing it could ever do.
Making hard working people suffer in traffic for that amount of time so that douche with a bullhorn can yell about no blood for oil is an insult to the human race. I hate cars and carbon emissions and the fact that we as a species are about to go extinct, but there is no reason to make people suffer in the mean time.
Consider the effects of your actions! Since that is exactly what the mass is supposed to be all about.

And for full disclosure, I ride a bike too. And when I do so, I obey the traffic laws, just like all the car traffic around me.

I’m traffic. You’re not, Critical Mass.

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35 responses so far

35 Responses to “MyLife: Critical Mass Sucks. If You Ride With Them, So Do You”

  1. royceon 31 Jan 2009 at 4:14 pm

    I ride with critical mass and have found that drivers who react the way that you did are in the vert small, minuscale minority. Besides, I think that you’re missing the larger point, the kind of coillective energy whoich comes from the bike ride and emantes from the statement “we’re not blocking traffic, we are traffic”. It expresses a profound crituque of the multiple ways in which societies have been built around the car to the detriment not only of cyclists but our environment. If critical mass can make that kind of statement, empowering people to get on their bikes and claim the streets back, express a critque of our entire thinking about transportation than its worth blocking some traffic once a month for a couple of hours. Next time, get on your bike and join the ride!

  2. jnarveyon 31 Jan 2009 at 8:16 pm

    I’ve got no problem with critiquing our unsustainable transportation system.

    I do have a problem with self-righteous bullies blocking my path on my way home after a long day at work just because I happen to be in a car — blocking traffic in all four directions, by the way.

  3. […] Mass are dicks See?  I’m not the only one – via Jonathan Narvey: Several douche-bag members of Critical Mass stopped my wife and I from making a turn on the street […]

  4. Ruth Seeleyon 01 Feb 2009 at 12:31 pm

    I’m appalled by bike riders who don’t follow the rules of the road – maybe because the next thing my dad did after teaching me how to ride a bike was to put together a series of bicycle safety workshops at my public school (naturally my attendance was mandatory).

    I had a cyclist once circle my car repeatedly like an angry hornet while I was stopped at a red light because he was ‘training’ – during that one red light I think he must have broken about 20 traffic regulations. I was furious with him for endangering himself – because we all know, in any confrontation between cyclist and car, the car is going to win.

    If I saw motorists pulling the stupid stunts bicyclists do, I’d never drive again. These protests should be going on at City Hall, not at the Lions Gate Bridge. It’s the city’s fault there aren’t bike lanes on major Vancouver roadways – not motorists’. If a city as unenlightened as Toronto can create bike paths on major streets (like College Street – east/west route and Sherbourne Street – north/south route), why can’t Vancouver?

  5. royceon 01 Feb 2009 at 9:17 pm

    I wish you were as appalled at the slaughter of 400 Palestinian children but that’s another matter all together. Raising awareness sometimes involves causing people some discomfort, of which being delayed in traffic seems to me to be rather minor. Ironically your attitude is what makes Critical Mass necessary in the first place.

  6. Ruth Seeleyon 02 Feb 2009 at 8:11 am

    What, precisely, is it that you’re trying to raise my awareness of, Royce? The fact that some bicyclists are dickheads? I’m already well aware of that fact – as a pedestrian, as a cyclist, and as a motorist.

  7. royceon 02 Feb 2009 at 11:16 am

    Well first of all Critical Mass is a communal celebratory event open to all. The very act of claiming the streets, spontaneously choosing routes and riding together itself is not only empowering but its emcompasses a kind of crtique of our increasingly isolated and atomotized society. More than that it calls into question how and why we organise streets and cities around forms of transportation which pollute our environment. The event is part celebatory and part defiant. That once a month cranky bloggers may get backed up a bit in traffic for a wee bit, is no real big deal at all. J Narvey lets see you, my friend, at the next event

  8. Jonathon Narveyon 02 Feb 2009 at 3:11 pm

    Here’s the thing, Royce. I’m already empowered.

    I’m empowered to claim the streets on my bike, or in my car, or on the bus, just so long as the claim I stake doesn’t interfere with the ability of everyone else to get where they’re going on public property.

    I’m sorry you feel the need to travel in a large group that attempts to intimidate people in order to feel “empowered”.

    Using Critical Mass to stop traffic and bully drivers isn’t defiance. It’s stupidity.

    All I’m asking Critical Mass to do is follow its own motto. You’d think it wouldn’t be so hard.

  9. royceon 02 Feb 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Please I’ve seen car drivers get out and wave the bike riders after cheering us on. Most people understand that its a minor delay in service of a larger more important point. Sure there may be a few hostile bike riders in the same away that critical mass encounters a minority of angry car drivers from time to time. To use an isolated point to slur the entire critical mass is to woefully miss the point. This isnt about bullying or intimidation, it’s about raising awareness and ultimately reclaiming collective communal space. Even Gregor Robertson, Fred Bass and Andrea Reimer have come slong for the ride. It’s high time for you to quit griping from the sidelines, get away from your higly individualistic perspective and open up your eyes. When you’ve done all that feel free to grab your bike and join us on the last friday of every month. Peace, yo

  10. Fredon 03 Feb 2009 at 2:24 pm

    Critical Mass are typical of the my-crap-doesn’t-stink-but-yours-does mobs that believe their self delusional superiority gives them the right to impose their philosophies on whomever they please.

    They think their superiority gives them the right to be above the law.

    They are legends in their own minds, a waste of time, space and oxygen and in the end, their self-centered, childish, selfish actions will mean they will only be preaching to themselves.

    Anyone with any common sense will just tune them out.

    And they should be arrested, charged with every traffic violation they breach and made to pay through their noses.

  11. jnarkeyon 09 Feb 2009 at 11:18 am

    Tolerance is a learned skill.
    You will receive another lesson next month.

  12. Kuroameon 17 Mar 2009 at 2:46 pm

    How many drivers drive 60Kmh in 50Kmh zones?, that’s a much more serious risk to the driver and others than almost anything a cyclist could do.

  13. Bobon 19 May 2009 at 6:54 pm

    If anyone put their hands on MY vehicle, I would be going to jail for murder…

    DO NOT touch another man’s property.

  14. Auroraon 22 Jun 2009 at 8:26 am

    Critical Mass is important because it was created for, and remains, a consciousness-raising event. It is a reminder that we created our entire landscapes and main mode of transportation for the past 100 odd years solely around the private automobile. So, naturally, for a large group of bicyclists to, yes, “reclaim” these concrete roadscapes for a, yes, mere couple hours once a month hardly seems a difficult “sacrifice” on behalf of motorists, to compensate for all we have lost and had to bear the past 50 to 60 years while the single-occupant vehicle was given priority in every single facet of urban development on this continent: air pollution; paving over of 30%+ of of land base; highest cause of deaths; medical costs of those left behind maimed/injured for life; the now impending catastrophic climate change brought on predominantly by vehicle use around the globe; creation of urban sprawl we call suburbia eliminating unknown amounts of farmland over the decades, etc etc. So, yes, Jonathan, some of us feel the Ride still warrants its right to exist as a fun, colourful, low-impact, yet highly visible means of reminding everyone of the kind of urban environments we could now have. Things don’t change overnight, but it’s undeniable over the past 10 to 20 years, the amount of progress made (and most importantly, acknowledgement of) planning for and accommodating the bicycle on our city streets – and on streets of cities around North America that may not have occurred without ‘activist’ types of activities like the CM ride. So, if you feel safe and like you already “own” the roads on your bike, perhaps you should give a nod of thanks to consciousness-raising events like this (and join in!) instead of slamming them. For perhaps, without this monthly gentle, highly visible reminder of all the cyclists on our city streets, true changes like this may never have occurred and you could still be riding on city streets that existed 30 or 40 years ago. So, please, next month, grab your bike and come out – it really is a lot fun. — This month (June) is Bike Month, the largest and most fun turn-out of the year, I hope you’ll join us!

  15. Peteron 28 Jun 2009 at 6:04 pm

    Critical Mass is stupid and nonconstructive. I care about the environment far more than the average person, but I fail to see how angering the vast majority of motorists and causing additional pollution due to traffic jams will “spread the message” or get people to ride bikes. If I ever was considering riding a bike (I use public transit, which was also blocked) I definitely am not anymore given the group of morons I would be associated with. If Critical Mass wants to be treated with respect, I suggest they reciprocate.

    Also, if cyclists feel they have the right to damage people’s cars with their bikes, then they can get run over for all I care, and there would be no sympathy from most of us. We are all human and deserve to be treated with equal respect and equal laws, regardless of the vehicle we choose to travel in.

    Change is gradual, we are seeing good signs regarding the green movement. These ridiculous Critical Mass demonstrations are only setting us back.

  16. Peteron 28 Jun 2009 at 6:14 pm

    In response to Aurora:

    Are you saying that our roads shouldn’t be paved and we should all be riding bikes? Why don’t we live in caves while we’re at it, because constructing bikes consumes resources.

    And I guess we should bike people over to the hospitals when they have a heart attack or are giving birth. And firemen should bike as fast as their legs can pedal to take care of the apartment building going down in flames with hundreds of people inside.

    By the way, the reminder is not gentle when thousands of cyclists are screaming obnoxiously and delaying people from seeing their families, attending meetings, etc. Taking over the Lions Gate Bridge is going WAY too far. I hope the police take care of a bunch of you and put you in their place. Are you going to pull a stunt like this during the olympics too?

  17. Marcon 29 Jun 2009 at 4:49 pm

    I personally cannot stand Critical Mass. A bunch of douche-bags for sure.
    I love how if someone has a “cause” then they think they have the “right” to disrupt other people’s lives.
    Listen, I have a bike – and so does my wife. However, my wife is pregnant now and her doctor said she shouldnt ride a bike now so she doesnt.
    So we go out to dinner IN OUR CAR because that is the only way to get there, and on the way back we are trapped by a bunch of Critical Mass jackoffs. Now i dont know if you know what happens to pregnant people if they drink ANYTHING, but they pretty much have to go to the bathroom all the time. But, hey, you have your little “cause” so I guess my wife will just have to sit there in complete discomfort while you assholes block intersections.
    I got out of my car and made it a point to personally flip off every biker that passed me while yelling at them and calling them any foul name I could think of. Of course, not one of the pansy stopped to engage me. Good thing, because with my wife literally CRYING in the car because she is so uncomfortable I would have not stopped until biker blood was spilled.

    Fuck Critical Mass. You do yourselves a disservice and do nothing to help your cause.

    Most bikers nowadays are idiots anyway. You want to have the same “rights” as cars, but none of the responsibilities.

    It is perfectly acceptable to take up half the road and go below the speed limit because you silly legs cant get you any faster because “you have the same RIGHTS as cars” supposedly – yet you will RELIGIOUSLY drive right through a stop sign with just a glance to the left and the right.

    What a bunch of hypocrites.

  18. Peteron 01 Jul 2009 at 2:27 pm

    Are there any drivers who don’t know that cars are destroying the planet’s ability to support life as we know it today? Are there any drivers who haven’t noticed that the climate has changed since they were kids and that this is largely due to cars and houses?

    How can thinking adults not feel immense guilt while they continue to live in neighbourhoods where they are obliged to drive on a daily basis?

    Are these the same adults that are calling CM riders selfish, dickheads, douche bags etc? Instead I would suggest it is the driving adults who are all these awful things because they are destroying our ecosystem without even a twinge of guilt. Perhaps they should recognize that anyone brave enough to ride a bike instead of taking a bus or a car is taking considerable personal risk in order to reduce their impact on the ecosystem.

    I have even observed otherwise reasonable and intelligent looking adults celebrate car culture by souping up their cars and replacing perfectly working mufflers with far less effective models. They appear to be proud of their contribution to climate change and their peers must agree otherwise why would car image be so important?

    Now I presume you folks railing against the CM ride are also thinking adults; so why don’t you THINK for a minute. You all know cars are bad for the environment but clearly knowledge isn’t enough for you to do your part. So I guess stronger measures are required to make you selfish adults give up your unsustainable lifestyle.

    The CM ride is few peoples’ attempt to make you connect the dots. Maybe it doesn’t work for all of you but I bet it works for some. For those adults that don’t get it and just get mad at the CM ride, well I am glad we screwed up your evening because cars screw us up every day; and worse, you are screwing our future.

  19. Peter (from 28 Jun)on 02 Jul 2009 at 4:37 am

    To the other Peter:

    It isn’t just the car drivers that can’t stand Critical Mass. As I said before, I either walk or take public transit and do not own a car. I got delayed by close to two hours because Critical Mass decided to screw with everyone’s lives by blocking off a major road in Vancouver, one that connects to a bridge between two cities. The Lions Gate Bridge is notorious for its traffic problems even on a regular day, and these idiots felt like exacerbating the problem by taking it over (note that there is a fenced off bike lane for bikers, so I don’t know what they are complaining about).

    I fail to see how anyone can support/encourage their “cause” when each time they perform one of their publicity stunts, they are contributing to the very problem they are fighting against by causing added pollution due to severe traffic jams.

    You do not increase awareness by angering and inconveniencing people. I was angry enough having just left my apartment, I can only imagine how someone would feel if they had been working for nine hours and were eager to return home to their families and friends and were caught to this farce.

    For more peaceful and fun awareness-raising activities, look to the car-free days that are already occurring with increasing frequency. Here, people are informed in advance that certain areas will be shut down to cars, and they take their families and walk or bus to the area to participate in the events that are planned. This way, they realize how much fun can be had without so many cars blocking the roads. I wish Critical Mass would realize how much more effective these types of events are in raising positive awareness, and either step aside or participate in similar events.

    The bottom line is that people need cars and public transportation, and therefore we need roads that can accommodate them. Instead of living in dreamland where everyone rides a bike (despite the obvious inadequacies such as luggage space, speed, distance, time, physical fitness, the list goes on), we should work on reducing and ultimately eliminating the impact that cars have on the environment. Human beings are an amazing species, and have accomplished so much, so it can be done. Hybrid and electric cars already exist with increasing frequency, and are a huge step in the right direction. Government funding is increasing towards this type of research, so I don’t know why these babies are still crying over it. As I said before, this type of change will be gradual, and we are seeing it happen before our eyes. A little bit of reality is necessary here. This problem has been built over so many years – things are not going to change in the snap of a finger no matter how many people you annoy.

    As for “reclaiming public space,” that’s just a catchy tagline that means absolutely nothing to Critical Mass. What they are doing is taking over public space as their own private playground. Public space is public – available to everyone to do what they like as long as they are abiding by the law. Who’s breaking the law here? The car drivers or the bikers? Where are your helmets if you’re so concerned about safety? Everyone without a helmet should be ticketed, since you are on public space, taking up lanes designated for cars, no less.

    If you really want to make a difference, instead of acting like a hooligan and pretending you’re better than everyone else because you decide to ride a bike and screw people over on the last Friday of each month, why don’t you get a job or invest in an education where you can deal with environmental problems head-on? I am currently doing a masters degree in environmental engineering, and plan to do my part, while at the same time being a respected, law-abiding member of society, which is more than can be said of anyone involved in Critical Mass. Your intentions may be good, but execution and understanding are poor and deconstructive. So what if I end up driving a car? In 30-40 years time, I will have made a far greater positive impact on climate change than the vast majority of you.

    I welcome any comments or rebuttals.

  20. Marcon 02 Jul 2009 at 2:03 pm

    Quote from above:

    “Are there any drivers who don’t know that cars are destroying the planet’s ability to support life as we know it today? Are there any drivers who haven’t noticed that the climate has changed since they were kids and that this is largely due to cars and houses?”

    My answer: Of course there are! I am a driver, AND I also ride a bike at times. But even if I didn’t ride a bike, that would not necessarily mean that I am insensitive to bikers needs and the impact of cars.

    People like you seem to think in terms of black and white: one is either FOR Critical Mass, or they are FOR the earth being destroyed. Sorry to point it out to you, but the world actually exists in shades of grey.

    I am for NEITHER.

  21. Hypocritical Assson 10 Jul 2009 at 3:43 pm

    WAY too preachy. I’ve got a bowling ball for the next rally I see. I’m a SERIOUS cyclist who does both commuting and lengthy rides (200 miles in a day). The best remedy for the troubles between motorists and cyclists is mutual respect. Obey the laws, and watch the respect from those in cars.

  22. Peteron 20 Jul 2009 at 9:37 pm

    I am glad to read how much everybody is doing to save the planet. Funny, I hear this sort of defensive response from lots of well intentioned folks… but wait a minute… why are there still so many cars on the road? I am hypocrite too. I actually own two cars!

    Slow change is not enough. Climate change is accelerating and every minute we delay fixing the problem makes the ultimate problem worse. Some say we need to reduce our CO2 output by 90% just to keep the planet habitable.

    Everybody’s carbon stinks – even if you work in the environmental field or ride hundreds of miles a day. Every gram of CO2 emitted is a problem. While we piss around on this website arguing over how to change our destructive ways new suburbs are being built creating more car dependent people. We as a society need to make drastic and immediate changes to the way we live. We need a revolution.

    Revolutions hurt people. They force people to make really big sacrifices. And people get really angry. Look at how angry people got over a puny little BC provincial carbon tax.

    I would venture to guess that Critical Mass riders are angry at cars (and the otherwise fine folk who drive them) and that it feels kind of nice to take over every once and a while.

    I thought the CM ride was way over the top before I was coerced by an enviro friend to ride in one. May I suggest that you have to experience the ride to really know how it feels. If you really want to criticize the CM ride why don’t you first ride in it so you really know what you are arguing against?

    What if we were to all agree that car use is a big problem for the environment and the future of our society. If we agreed on this, then every time one of us got in our car we would feel pretty guilty for being so irresponsible. Perhaps we would try to hide or lie about how much we drive our cars. Getting stuck in a CM traffic interruption would then feel like you were caught with your pants down so to speak. You have been caught in the act of driving your car, something we have all agreed is really bad. The last thing you would do is get mad at the CM riders. You would instead hang your head in shame.

    Yes some well meaning folks on busses or on foot are also being inconvenienced by the CM ride but if you are following my logic, perhaps I could be a little arrogant and suggest there is some unfortunate collateral damage in every battle.

    I believe activism is required to effect substantial and rapid change. People get mad at activists but somehow their extreme behaviour shifts everybody else’s behaviour. One thing is for sure; the CM ride does get attention. The miniscule steps people have been taking so far to change their behaviour suggests that education alone is not enough to start the revolution. The CM may or may not be effective activism but I would say, at this point, we have nothing to lose. So on with the ride!

  23. Marcon 22 Jul 2009 at 3:46 pm

    Peter said:
    Revolutions hurt people. They force people to make really big sacrifices. And people get really angry.

    Response:
    PAH-LEASE tell me what your “revolution” is? What is the end-game? What if 1/4 of all cars would disappear? What if 1/2? I submit that CM would still exist because you HAVE NO CAUSE.
    Is it about pollution? Well, lines of cars idling at blocked intersections spew more pollution than those moving to their destination. Each time you have a CM event it puts MORE POLLUTION in the air than if you did not show up.
    And do you really think that breaking the law and being a holier than thou chump is going to make people “see the light” and stop driving their cars? This is not activism, this is not “revolution” it is simple childish rebellion with no purpose.

    Creating real change is not fun. It is not exciting, and it is not “Cool”.
    IF: all the misguided fools who participate in CM would get together and actually GO to their local government meetings – which are open to the public and happen every month, BTW (yawn, my attention wont last that long), and WRITE to their representatives – both local and regional (But I HATE writing, what is this school or something?), and WORK TOGETHER with the authorities to create literature and awareness (Oh my, how very UNCOOL, I simply couldn’t do something like that! Would I have to dress respectably and treat others like adults? Noway! you ask too much!)..
    THEN: you can start to see some real quantifiable (and quantifiable) change.

    Lets face it. If you were honest you would realize most of the CM riders could care less about any of that. They just want to “have fun” And if your idea of “having fun” is to break the law and disrupt other peoples lives, you need help.

    For those who truly think they are making a difference, I submit you do much more harm to the cause of cycling than good.

    Peter said:
    May I suggest that you have to experience the ride to really know how it feels. If you really want to criticize the CM ride why don’t you first ride in it so you really know what you are arguing against?

    Response to Peter:
    Actually we get to see more of CM than you do. You see the folks who are right beside you or in front of you. Others get to see THE ENTIRE THING. That means the nice people and the mean D-Bags. May I invite you to sit at a street corner sometime and watch everything? That means the thugs who start it off by blocking cars and pounding on ones that are obeying the law. That includes the pedestrians who are run over in the crosswalks even when they have a green light. C’mon.. you guys hate PEDESTRIANS. Apparently on your night of revelry even the most eco-friendly mode of transportation on earth – your own two feet – is somehow worthy of your wrath and scorn. Yet another sign of the hypocrisy.

    Peter said:
    One thing is for sure; the CM ride does get attention.

    Response to Peter:
    Yup. When I ride my bike to work the day AFTER a CM event, I can feel the affect of CM. I get more angry honks, more ugly looks and I feel overall less SAFE. Thank you so much Critical Mass.

  24. Meion 30 Jul 2009 at 8:38 am

    Maybe this is already mentioned… but for you self-righteous “protectors of the environment”… have you thought for even a nano-second how MUCH MORE EMISSIONS YOU ARE CAUSING BY BLOCKING TRAFFIC AND HAVING CARS IDLING????

    D’uh.

    Course not.

    You’re too busy being “empowered” to notice the damage you are causing.

    douchebags – yep… sounds about right

  25. Maurice Cardinalon 30 Jul 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Critical Mass outlived it’s initial mandate to raise awareness long ago. Hardly anyone pays attention anymore. It’s the reason CM has to escalate the “pain in the ass” factor. The more the parent ignores a child, the louder the child screams. The CM ride is also ideologically redundant and like asking everyone to invest in $12 light bulbs to save the earth while our country irresponsibly dumps tons of coal into the atmosphere to generate power.

    Your passive aggressive protest is similar to Olympic protesters creating havoc for average citizens when the reality is that protestors are actually upset with Olympic sponsors and organizations. As Sun Tzu said, know your enemy, and don’t piss off your allies.

    Critical Mass riders might also want to take a close look at what you do for a living. If you work at a company that pollutes don’t cause trouble on our streets because you feel guilty. And don’t even think about volunteering for the 2010 Olympics, an event that is still an unmitigated environmental disaster. On your next ride turn to the person beside you and ask what they do for a living. You might be surprised.

    Critical Mass riders shoot their community in the foot because it is easier to ride aimlessly than it is to go after the big guys causing the problem.

    You’ve done a good job so far of raising awareness, but it’s time for CM to switch gears and up your game. For example, and I’m not advocating you do this, but if Critical Mass really wants to make a global impact flash mob a rotating list of car dealerships and surround them on busy Saturday afternoons to draw attention to your cause. Car dealers are huge newspaper advertisers, and the last thing struggling newspapers need right now is to have anyone negatively impact their best customers. Trust me, you’ll get noticed because car dealerships will jump down the throats of newspaper advertising reps looking for editorial help.

    Unfortunately, protests like this rarely work because governments immediately intervene . . . with force

    So here’s a more realistic solution; If 3,000 CM bikers got on the internet for one hour a month in a coordinated effort and blasted international media and the websites of the companies and politicians creating and supporting environmental problems you would have more success.

    In its current state, Critical Mass is now more about grandstanding than results, which means it’s time to evolve.

    It’s a new era. Cross promote your platform online and hit them where it hurts, in the pocketbook.

    At the very least combine the street ride with a virtual ride targeting the corporations causing environmental problems. Let them know they are on your radar and that if they don’t start acting responsibly you might one day soon send 3,000 riders or more to have a face to face. Anticipation is a powerful tool because it causes people to speculate, and if you set the right tone people always envision the worst case scenario.

    There is no doubt you have been moderately successful, but now you’re negatively impacting the wrong people. Quit making enemies of those you need for support. Music industry executives did it this way and look what happened? Suing and pissing off your customers isn’t a smart strategy.

  26. CM hurts cyclingon 06 Aug 2009 at 4:18 pm

    This website says it all;

    http://www.CriticalMassSucks.com

  27. fltnsplron 20 Sep 2009 at 12:17 am

    So they started in San Francisco and have spread like roaches to Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, and Los Angeles. Sadly, they have mutated again, and now infest San Diego.

    I have also been stopped by asshole cyclists who do nothing to raise consciousness about their situation. All they do is make sophomoric comments and piss drivers off.

    To be sure, there are morons using every form of transportation. But if you want to be taken seriously, try practicing “same rules, same road” instead of expecting motorists to put up with your bullshit.

  28. Peter (Anti-CM)on 06 Nov 2009 at 5:24 pm

    To all CMers who think cars are evil because they pollute our atmosphere, I invite you to check out this link, or look at any other similar chart:

    http://oica.net/wp-content/uploads/co2.bmp

    As you can see, road vehicles only account for 15.9% of total man-made CO2 emissions. That means if you take every single car off the road (yeah right!), you would have made A VERY SMALL DIFFERENCE and still have a huge problem on your hands. It’s important to know the facts when you’re protesting against something. Let me ask you guys a few questions:

    Do you use electricity and heating? Why? Our early ancestors didn’t need to. Unless you’re from B.C., chances are your power is generated using coal or natural gas, which emit CO2 (the total footprint is three times more than cars, by the way). Maybe we should cut down the transmission line to your house to teach all you CM polluters a lesson. Turn off the computers, wear some extra layers and live by natural light! It’s the good thing to do! I’ll be interested to know how many of you “activists” live in huge energy sucking houses, don’t use CFL lightbulbs, water your huge lawns twice a week and put out multiple bags of garbage every few days.

    How much of the stuff you buy is made locally? I’d guess under 5% easily. How do all those lovely things from China, India and Japan get to where you are? Magic? No, it’s called freight, and it’s a huge cause of global warming and pollution. But, you all contribute to it because you want the best things at the lowest prices.

    How many of you are vegetarians? I hope all, because livestock contributes 14% (or thereabouts) to total global warming impact (it doesn’t show up on the chart because it’s methane and not CO2). Pretty easy to cut meat out from your diet, probably more healthy as well.

    These are just a few examples of the hypocrisy exhibited by the vast majority of you CMers. Why are protesting against cars when there are so many other things to go after, that you happily contribute to? You have nothing to feel good about. I bet there are tons of people who drive cars and emit LESS CO2 THAN YOU DO. Fight for some real change

  29. paying driveron 17 Mar 2010 at 11:30 am

    All the bicyclists should have to get licences and pay insurance if they drive on the road. If lanes are takin from paying road users, bikers should have to pay a toll.

    They pay for nothing, and complain about everything.

    Oh, and I can ride a bike harder and longer than most of you complaining hippies. So don’t tell me that “I dont ride”.

    You are a bunch of babies wanting barricaded, hyper-oversized & under used lanes so you can push your eco-hatred on people who have made decisions to pay for the use of cars.

    Make them get licences and insurance! Stop taking our lanes!

  30. fixed gear guyon 24 Mar 2010 at 2:42 pm

    I am a proud SF fixed gear rider and hell yeah i fuckin use the street when i want to fuck cars and everyone that drives them get those piece of (mainly) American craps off the streets. Bikes are much more efficient. And i do ride critical mass and i am most of the time in the front so kiss my ass drivers. Most of the time i dont even ride the bike lane and yea i do slow down traffic and i do run reds a leave loser cars behind so fuck all you. (except for the real bikers)

  31. sgraffon 07 Oct 2010 at 3:18 pm

    Where are all these CM hooligans during national bike-to-work month, or the two national Bike-to-Work days? Nowhere!

    Sure CM is a celebration… a celebration of thugs! Fixed gear guy personifies what has become a very large faction of CM and everything that has gone wrong with a good idea. It is also the reason why I as a bike commuter would love to send these posers as “champions of environment and the under-dog” over their handlebars with a well placed bike pump to the spokes.

    I have seen first hand in an SF CM ride the viscous pleasure “the enforcers” take in terrorizing pedestrians and motorists alike. It is so bad, that if the CM mob was not escorted by the SF police, it would have resulted riots years ago.

  32. Noahon 29 Jul 2011 at 6:27 pm

    It’s pretty clear here in Seattle that Critical Mass are nothing more than a bunch of elitist bully’s who believe their religion is superior to everyone around them.
    Don’t fool yourself, it’s a belief system, it’s a religion.
    And the proselytize by intentionally blocking car traffic to insight drivers to engage with them.
    They are mean spirited, intentionally insulting, and just downright rude – and they’ve completely obliterated any hope of anyone ever hearing any message beyond “We are better than you because we ride bikes.”
    Your message it lost in the din of your stupidity.
    It’s not a peaceful demonstration with a valuable message, it’s an obstruction and a nuisance and an embarrassment to anyone who is actually working to heal this planet or stem the tide of destruction we’ve wrought as humans.
    I, for one, can’t ride a bike to work in my city for fear of being associated with Critical Mass.
    They’re going to start a riot and people are going to be hurt – they’re embarrassing.

  33. Marcon 09 Sep 2011 at 3:40 pm

    I think “fixed gear guy” 3 posts above ^^^ sums up the pro-critical mass stance pretty well.
    Incoherent, childish ramblings. Like a child in a temper tantrum.

  34. Mikeon 04 Feb 2012 at 1:39 am

    I rode with a CM group in Dallas, to see what it was like. I think it was mostly hipsters, with some commuters in there too. They were nice to drivers, and the drivers were tolerant. No one had any problems throwing things, no one yelled. Someone touched a bus, and I am not sure what the point was, but the bus driver was cool. He just stopped, checked his mirrors, and went on.
    I didn’t like how they ran red lights in a big group though. That was irritating. Really, I mean break it up some, there are maybe a 100 bikes and no one is in any hurry!

  35. Critteron 07 Sep 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I have never had a problem with CM and would love to have one of their tuff guys get in my face.. I ride my bike everyday to work and believe that riders have rights to the road too but for a group to show that they are nothing more than jackass and Interrupt people with their everyday stuff is not going to do anything but piss off tons of people.. I’m a proud veteran and believe that the US is a place where one can speak his peace, but I guess there is always one bad apple in the group and with CM there’s so many bad apples that one couldn’t even begin to count!!! So I will keep praying for the day for one or more of these CM tuff guys to get in my face so I can defended myself and let them have a real taste of asphalt as my clubs lump their faces!!!! S.F.F.S

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