LA’s city elections are still more than nine month away.
Yet the action is heating up in the city’s 4th Council District, where challenger Sarah Kate Levy has already won the endorsement of popular first-term Congresswoman Katie Hill.
It’s unusual for an elected official to endorse a challenger facing an incumbent councilmember from his or her own party.
Especially in Los Angeles.
And especially this early in the race.
Yet Hill announced yesterday she’s throwing in with the rookie city council candidate.
Sarah Kate Levy also received an early endorsement from Bike the Vote LA, who said she stood out far above the scrum of candidates, including Ryu.
Or maybe especially Ryu.
Levy summed up her position on Twitter in response to another user.
I am in this race b/c I can’t stand the status quo — I want to live in a city where housing is affordable & abundant, where people are safe on our roads, however they choose to travel, & our urban forest shades us all. I want to live in a city that’s serious about #climateaction
— Sarah Kate Levy (@sarahkatelevy) June 25, 2019
Which is something we should have heard from incumbent David Ryu years ago.
Photo from Sara Kate Levy’s website.
Today’s common theme is bike cops.
When a pair of Seattle bike cops tried to stop a man for carrying a knife, he fought with the officers — probably because of his two outstanding warrants and the coke in his backpack.
Boston bike cops got into a shootout with a fleeing man after responding to a report of shots fired; the officers were uninjured, while the suspect was killed.
Two Ottawa, Canada bike cops were exonerated of breaking a belligerent drunk’s wrist after the man confronted them and challenged one to a fight; investigators concluded he could have broken his wrist in a fight before the police arrested him, or while punching his cell wall afterwards.
And you could always make the tales of a teenaged Maine bike cop part of your summer reading.
Heartbreaking news from New York, where hundreds of fed-up bike riders rallied to protest the death of yet another person on a bicycle, coupled with the usual inaction by the NYPD.
Big turnout for the vigil for the young cyclist killed this morning. People are angry, frustrated with police response to crash pic.twitter.com/edPMiClNlY
— Liam Quigley (@_elkue) June 24, 2019
The victim, a 20-year old bike racer, was hit by the driver of a semi-truck shortly after moving to the city from Virginia.
Needless to say, the driver kept going, returning to the scene claiming he didn’t know he’d hit anyone, after witnesses chased him down.
The victim, Robyn Hightman, had recently been named one of 10 ambassadors for the Hagens Berman–Supermint Pro Cycling Team.
Here’s what she movingly wrote about the impact of bicycling in her life, in applying for the program.
As a homeless youth deeply entrenched in the trappings of poverty and parental abuse and neglect, my first bicycle offered a way to seek respite from the horrors of my surroundings and human experience, if only for a few glorious minutes. My bicycle established a sense of independence, strengthened my ability to be self sufficient, and provided me with the confidence necessary to advocate for myself, my rights, and my needs in public space. My bicycle enabled me to leave our encampment every day to access education, seek out food, and fulfill my basic needs. Eventually, my bicycle allowed me to provide for myself when I began working a full time job at the age of fourteen. My bicycle provided me with the socioeconomic mobility necessary to escape. My bicycle saved my life.
Sadly, she lost it while riding her bike, as well.
Maybe if LA bike riders would respond like that to the continued carnage on our streets, our elected leaders might finally start taking us — and our lives — seriously.
Sadly, though, when someone is killed riding a bike in Los Angeles, in most cases, the late, great Phil Ochs nailed it.
Because in most cases, “It really doesn’t matter to anybody, outside of a small circle of friends.”
Why waste your bike pump skills putting air in your tires, when you could be making music?
Although this one seems to work a little better.
And more timely, too.
Okay, so it’s not the kind of bike you pedal.
But a young Pennsylvania man learned the hard way not to taunt a cop while riding a stolen dirt bike if you can’t control the damn thing.
The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes.
Even when they’re kids riding for a good cause, if not in the right way.
English drivers were angered when a hundred teenagers took to the streets to call for an end to knife crime. But one man did more than complain, getting out of his car and pushing a boy off his bike; police called that “not an acceptable response.”
Sad news from Koreatown, where a man was shot and killed while riding his bicycle by another man on a bike; police are investigating it as a possible gang shooting.
A New Urbanist living carfree in Los Angeles says she’d like to ride a bike, but has doubts about safety.
No news is good news, right?
NPR talks with the author of The World’s Fastest Man about the legendary Major Taylor, who battled Jim Crow racism to become an international bike racing sensation in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, yet died pennyless. Thanks to Brooks McKinney for the heads-up.
Wired lists their picks for the year’s top three bike helmets, ranging from Trek’s new $300 WaveCel tech to Bluetooth and crash detection models. Or maybe you’d rather have a full-face mountain bike helmet that snaps off to convert to a regular helmet.
Bicycling says if you get a concussion while shredding trails on your mountain bike, stop riding, already. The same goes for roadies, too.
Forget bikes, Strava wants to be your new social network.
A Portland woman walks with just community service after injuring a woman by booby trapping a bike path after a night of heavy drinking — but she does have to write a letter saying she’s really, really sorry. She can thank the very forgiving victim who asked for no jail time.
Speaking of Portland, a man riding a bike is dead because a speeding, aggressive driver had the munchies after drinking tequila and Sprite all day.
E-mails obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show Chicago officials were afraid of a revolt by bike riders if they banned bicycles from the popular Riverfront shared-use path. Even though one alderman is still trying to do just that.
A Minnesota paper almost gets it, saying sharrows are nothing more than a reminder to share the road, although thy don’t seem grasp their benefit as wayfinding symbols, or that they tell both bicyclists and drivers where bikes should be positioned in the lane. As far as safety is concerned, however, all they do is help drivers improve their aim. Which is not a good thing.
A kindhearted Kentucky kid gave away the bike he was given after a thief made off with his bike, after cops recovered the one he got for having perfect attendance.
A Boston mom says the thief that stole her six-year old son’s bicycle didn’t just take his bike, he stole his innocence.
No bias here. A community in New York’s Hudson Valley has decided to break the law by requiring bicyclists to ride single file, even though state law allows people to ride side-by-side; a local radio station manages to see the story from just one side of the windshield.
There’s something seriously wrong with a protected bike lane when the NYPD has to stand guard to keep drivers out of it.
Tragic news from New Jersey, where family members found a 61-year old man dead on the side of the road next to his bike after he didn’t come home from his job on the graveyard shift; investigators believe he rode off the road on a descent. Although it’s always possible he was the victim of a too-close pass that forced him off the road.
WTF? No, a bicyclist didn’t break into a home and murder an 82-year old Pennsylvania man in his sleep. A man who happened to be riding a bicycle did, before he dismounted, busted in and killed a random stranger. The fact he was riding a bike had absolutely nothing to do with it.
A DC website wonders why there’s so much knee-jerk opposition to road diets in the area, when they would make streets safer and barely affect traffic. Good question. Another good question is why do so many newspapers and websites insist on putting quotation marks around “road diet”? That’s what they’re called. It makes no more sense than to put quotes around road diet than it does “streets”.
Britney Spears is one of us, going for a bikini-clad bike ride in some undisclosed tropical location.
The Guardian picks up the disgusting tale of the truly despicable London woman who pretended to be the aunt of a fallen bicyclist she had no relationship to, in order to claim the victim would have opposed a protected bike lane that might have saved her life.
Guardian readers consider how to make bicycling safer and more appealing, with one letter writer saying London doesn’t suck compared to Sydney, Australia, and another suggesting at least two US cities don’t suck, either. One of which is my humble hometown.
A British man uses recycled ocean plastic to create a foldable, and kind of cool looking, bikeshare helmet.
Experts attending the international Velo-City conference say Dublin, Ireland needs to cut private cars to make room for bikes.
Cycling Weekly considers five lessons from the recently concluded Tour de Suisse, as well as which Brits to watch for in advance of next month’s Tour de France.
Pro cyclist Lindsey Goldman says there has to be a better financial model for women’s cycling, as her Hagens Berman—Supermint team prepares to lose its chief sponsor. If they find one, tell the men, too.
When you’re making a jail break, always grab the nearest bicycle you can find to ensure a clean getaway. A man may have a clear conscious after mailing back the $6,000 bike he stole, but he ended up behind bars anyway.
And bike rustlers don’t have to ghost ride their stolen bikes anymore.