A small but vocal group is spreading anti-bike sentiment in Brooklyn at a time when non-polluting transportation is on the rise in New York City, and is recognized as essential to a sustainable future.
On December 17, the Time’s Up! Bicycle Clowns will ride to defend the new bike lane and future greenway connector in Williamsburg. The Bicycle Clowns will also be kicking off their year-long “Love Your Lanes” campaign to keep the focus on protecting and celebrating bike lanes.
According to event organizers, bike lane opponents – including some members of the Hasidic community who protest cyclists’ “immodesty,” along with Council Members Diana Reyna and David Yassky and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz – are trying to remove the newly installed Kent Street bike lane. Some opponents have even publicly threatened to illegally block the bike lanes with their private-school buses, which will force cyclists into traffic to avoid crashing into the obstructing vehicle and risk being struck and even killed.
“An injury to one bike lane, is an injury to all bike lanes,” bike lane clown Benjamin Shepard said. “Enforced, protected bike lanes save cyclists lives, improve the landscape and make better use of public space for most of the community.”
The Bike Clowns will ride on Kent Street and clear the bike lane of motor vehicles so that the bike lane is safe for cyclists commuting to work. The Bicycle Clowns will use theater to comically draw attention to the serious danger faced by cyclists without safe, protected bike lanes. They will educate bike lane opponents that removing bike lanes only encourages more people to drive, which further clogs our city’s streets and taxes our country’s oil resources.
“Safe, accessible bike lanes help us re-imagine our city’s future with far less dependence on motorized travel,” bike lane clown Madeline Nelson added.
For more information, visit http://times-up.org.