Morning Links: Endorsing Ramsay and O’Grady in CD4; and a blind bike rider needs your help to regain his sight

Today is election day in LA, as well as several surrounding communities.

I’d planned to write about the candidates running for the seat Tom LaBonge is vacating in Monday’s post, until the untimely death of Alex Baum — and yes, even at 92, he left us far too soon — took precedence.

So let me just offer an endorsement of sorts for the two candidates I’d most like to see make it into a runoff.

But let’s be clear on one thing first. I’m basing my choice strictly on those who bothered to respond to the LACBC’s candidate survey and participate in the recent Liveable Streets candidate forum.

Simply put, if a candidate doesn’t care enough to ask for our support, he or she doesn’t deserve it.

Of the 14 candidates in the race, only six meet both criteria. And of those, I prefer Tomas O’Grady and Carolyn Ramsay, with Sheila Irani coming in a not-so-distant third.

Either of those two would make a great choice; ideally, both will survive to compete against one another for the seat in the June general election, ensuring bicyclists will have a strong voice to replace a very weak one from the district in City Hall.

Meanwhile, the Times endorses Irani, while the Daily News picks O’Grady and Teddy Davis. And the LA Weekly calls the race total toss-up; with 14 candidates, the top two may only need a few thousand votes each to advance to the runoff.

As for the races in other districts, I’ve previously announced my unqualified endorsement of incumbent Jose Huizar in CD14.

For other races in LA and surrounding communities, check out the Bike the Vote LA voter guide. And the Times offers the rest of their endorsements, which for the most part don’t take bikes into account.

………

LA cyclist and nutritionist Matt Ruscigno sends word of a friend of his who is still struggling to recover, physically and financially, from a devastating 2008 bike wreck that left him blind and with no sense of taste or smell. Mike Vincent is looking for donations to help pay massive medical bills and recover his sight.

………

Local

The Times addresses the death of Alex Baum, focusing primarily on his bike advocacy, while promising a more complete obituary to come. Meanwhile, Streetsblog’s Joe Linton offers a great remembrance of a great man.

Downtown building owners are offering free bike rentals to tenants.

A woman and her Schwinn were rescued from the LA River by Pasadena firefighters.

KCET looks at LA’s recent literary ride.

Traffic is only going to get worse in WeHo unless the city retools its streets for the future, including bike lanes.

CLR Effect mourns the ghost of a poorly maintained bike lane.

 

State

The California State Association of Counties endorses road diets; let’s hope our local electeds are paying attention.

That proposed bike helmet bill could put a damper on San Diego’s new bike share program.

Once again, Tour de Fat will bypass LA; the nearest stop is in San Diego. Seriously, they can have their damn football team if they’ll just give us Tour de Fat back.

A Fresno cyclist is in critical condition after being hit by a car Monday afternoon; the out-of-control driver continued on to crash into a garage.

A cyclist in San Mateo County is killed in an apparent solo crash.

A Stanford blogger relates what it’s like to be hit by a car. Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

A San Francisco bike rider suffered life threatening injuries when he was hit by a car on Monday. Sheriffs deputies performed CPR for at least eight minutes until paramedics arrived; the victim was injured when the driver reportedly blew through a red light.

 

National

One third of all Americans over the age of three rode a bicycle last year; 57% of the 103.7 million US cyclists rode for recreation.

Hawaii police arrest one of their own for the on-duty hit-and-run crash that took the life of a Michigan bicyclist.

Once again, a bike rider saves the day, as an Alaska cyclist rescues a blind dog who had been lost for two weeks on -40 degree weather; he also turned the reward over to a local animal shelter.

Now that’s more like it, as a Casper WY man gets 12 to 16 years for the DUI death of a bike rider.

A 76-year old Texas man bikes 300 miles for Planned Parenthood.

It’s not that New York safety advocates want harsher penalties for killer drivers, as the NY Times says; it’s more like they want them to be charged at all.

No apology from a New York truck driver three years after the death of a cyclist. Then again, any good lawyer would tell his client not to apologize, as it could be seen as an admission of guilt.

 

International

The BBC profiles Britain’s Beryl Burton, arguably the country’s greatest female cyclist.

Sad to see racial animosity rear its ugly head in South African cycling, although I have no idea what it was that the country’s first international pro cyclist was called.

Aussie authorities reject calls to increase penalties for dooring in the wake of a cyclist killed after he was knocked into the path of a truck, while a writer calls for giving bicyclists greater rights on some roads.

A Brisbane man is fed up with rude bike riders after one leaves him lying injured on a pathway. Seriously, there’s no more excuse for a hit-and-run cyclist than there is for a hit-and-run driver.

A Vietnamese motorbike rider is killed escorting a women’s international bike race.

 

Finally…

Ford introduces two new e-bike prototypes that do not look like anything I would want to ride. I wonder if coating your bike in reflective sign paint would meet the state requirement for reflectors in all directions?

And repeat after me: If you’re carrying two meth pipes and a stolen credit card on the $2000 bike you allegedly stole, don’t hang out in front of a cop shop.

 

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