A Video Message About Bike Licensing, From New Jersey

Via Andy B at WalkBikeJersey, here’s how one Newark newspaperman responded to a recent proposal to mandate bicycle registration in his state. (Congrats on breaking the story, WalkBikeJersey.)

NYC’s own Eric Ulrich is contemplating a similar bill, though not one that would apply to minors. Somehow I doubt any of our local print outfits will respond in similar fashion.

It’s possible that Ulrich will get a look at this video and think twice about pushing for bike registrations, but it doesn’t look like he’s ready to re-examine his bill just yet. Gothamist got the following statement out of the 24-year-old City Council member from southeast Queens:

Being on the road is a privilege, not an absolute right. The city is constantly bending over backwards to accommodate cyclists with the installation of bike lanes and special traffic signals — yet drivers are the only ones who receive tickets for speeding, blowing red lights, and not yielding to pedestrian traffic. This is a common sense piece of legislation that will improve safety for everyone. The bottom line is that we all share the road and must follow the same rules.

If you can cut through all the resentment, made-up assertions, and false equivalence between cars and bikes, Ulrich seems to be saying that his bill will somehow make it easier to ticket cyclists. But — newsflash — there’s bike enforcement going on already. Even before the recent “crackdown,” police were able to hand out hundreds of tickets for sidewalk riding on the Upper East Side each month. This bill would mainly make it easier to ticket cyclists for riding without the ID mandated by this bill.

The next time a legislator seriously considers proposing a bill like this, here’s a helpful exercise for the would-be sponsor: Name one major city that has successfully instituted bike registration. Or, just read this.

  • The obvious question is, who’s a worse troll – CityHallMaven, or garyg?

  • Larry Littlefield

    “The side effect of this is you have many adults on the street who haven’t ridden since they were kids. When they were kids they likely rode on the sidewalk or in parks, so they have zero experience street riding.”

    I found that 25 plus years of motor vehicle driving, some of it in New York City traffic, was good training for street riding. Street riding is easier because you have more visibility and you are traveling at a lower speed. It only took a month or two before I got back to being able to handle the bike really well. I guess you never forget.

    But you have immigrants here who have never driven a motor vehicle. Given lower real incomes, higher taxes and higher fuel prices in the future, you’ll also have fewer young people becoming motor vehicle drivers. They’ll need to get their street riding training somewhere else.

  • ED

    Wait!? This little shit is only 24?! WTF

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Remember last month when Council Member Eric Ulrich came out with the idea of creating a complicated new bureaucracy to register and identify New Yorkers who ride bikes, a proposal that would build an expensive and redundant personal identification system on top of our existing ID systems, opening the door to increased harassment of cyclists […]