Many Voices on Critical Mass

September 27th, 2012 by hughillustration

Critical Mass and the SF Bicycle Coalition are often seen as one entity by the public or by the media. That’s a huge categorical error, and one it is often necessary to try to correct. On the one hand you have a leaderless street action, and on the other you have a nonprofit organization that works with city government. Those are two very different breeds! But happily there *is* a lot of overlap, and over the years lots of synergy and mutual support.

The SFBC chose to stop listing Critical Mass on their calendar some time ago, and just recently did not list the 20th anniversary and associated activities that have been put together.

Some people in the bike community were upset about this, so this blog published an open letter yesterday from Quintin Mecke to the SFBC, taking them to task for not including these events in their calendar. Quintin’s views are his own, but we were happy to publish them.

That’s why we started this blog — to give a home to many diverse views about Critical Mass, bicycle activism and bike culture in the Bay Area. We’ll publish almost anything! If you have an opinion about Critical Mass or bike culture and activism, send it to us. If it’s not outright hateful/racist/inflammatory/threatening, we are happy to publish it.

Though surprising, for those of us who moderate this blog and for those of us who volunteered to put together many of the activities this week, not being on the SFBC calendar is OK with us! We still appreciate all that they do at the SFBC. (Sitting through hours upon hours of meetings with city bureaucrats for one thing — not many of us can possibly face this! Thank god the SFBC has the patience!)

Looking forward to the Critical Mass ride on Friday!

— Hugh D’Andrade, LisaRuth Elliot, Chris Carlsson, Adriana Camarena

9 Responses to “Many Voices on Critical Mass”

  1. […] Some Upset About Critical Mass’ Absence from SFBC’s Newsletter (Though It’s Just One View) […]

  2. bureaucrat says:

    as a bureaucrat, sitting in hours with SFBC leadership is just as painful. and a lot less fun than critical mass. shame on you, lisaruth, for disparaging the actual hard-working, union employed, city planners and engineers that make the bike network a reality. beyond paper pushing, we participate in the dialogue, and we’re sorry that SFBC feels like it sucks to sit in meetings. we think it sucks too.

  3. admin says:

    I should clarify that these words were written by me, Hugh D’Andrade (with edits from others), and posted by LisaRuth because I was busy and it seemed time sensitive. Also, while the aside about meeting with city bureaucrats was intended to be humorous, it was intended as a genuine compliment. I know that I and others I work with simply don’t have the patience for this work that really does have to be done, and we’re glad there are those who have the ability.
    — Hugh D’Andrade

  4. soi dog says:

    isn’t lack of mention by SFBC really just affirmation role and vibe?

  5. Larry Foster says:

    As expected, my comments critical of CMs collective sociopathic behavior are deleted.

  6. admin says:

    Larry, your comment was posted earlier today:

    Looks like you are working from some preconceived assumptions that are inaccurate.

  7. Schef says:

    I missed something important. I remember
    It a being whateveR. Road with my daughter
    Like it was 1993! Truly a ren. Fair event

  8. Welesa says:

    You maybe be thinking this is the greatest and the most glorious thing in the world, but in reality you are negatively impacting many good San franciscian’s lives with this mess. I can only imagine how many lives were lost because of this event, since the emergency cars cannot get through as any other cars. Simply selfish. There are other and better ways to prove and protest that don’t hurt people.

  9. Where is your evidence for your claim that emergency vehicles are delayed by CM? Emergency paramedics have never complained, nor have the media ever covered such an incident, nor have the police ever used this as an excuse to shut down our ride — which they surely would like to do. To my knowledge this has never been a problem, and no one has ever died as a result of Critical Mass in almost 21 years of monthly rides, either directly or indirectly. It seems that you have made a false assertion, based on faulty assumptions, and this speaks poorly of your concern for the truth and the well-being of your fellow citizens.