Bikers ignored

Dear Editor:I recently attended a City Council meeting in which I brought up the subject of putting bike lanes in throughout the city. I caught the attention of Councilman Guerra who approached me after the meeting, gave me his personal card and told me that we "Speak the same language"; he told me to call or email for a meeting. So I did both and when I heard a response it was to tell me that he is forwarding the email to his secretary so that she can schedule a meeting between he and I. Over several weeks I have continued to email the councilman to remind him that we yet to have scheduled a meeting and he never responds, nor his secretary. If he and I allegedly speak the same language and want this safety concern addressed in our city, then why is he dragging his feet or is he simply indifferent? Cyclists are a small percentage of this city, a minority, but in this country we do afford the right to minorities among the population. If these were earlier times and Downey didn't recognize the rights of African-Americans, Hispanics/Chicanos, gays and lesbians, there would be an uproar over this unfair, unjust discrimination. But because cyclists are seen as a nuisance by many drivers we continue to be ignored by the public, the government and picked on by ill informed officers of the law who may not believe we have the rights of a motor vehicle, when California Vehicle Code states clearly that we, in fact, do. So, in response to this indifference and if the great Downey Patriot doesn't believe this is an interesting story cover, I will be contacting all local cycling advocacy groups, all local riding clubs and teams to hold protest rides every week in this city until we have been recognized and at the very least given bicycle lanes on major roads in this city as it is required in the original city plan, but always ignored. -- Richard Spencer, Downey

********** Published: April 7, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 51