Despite last week’s admission, I do not believe in violent confrontation. In addition, I am not anti-vehicular transport. As I said in my introductory post, I have a car. I share it with others members of my household. However, the people that have no regard for pedestrians really irk me. Sure, we all make mistakes, have lapses when we drive, fail to see the occasional pedestrian out of the corner of our eye, but add all of those mistakes together and it does not bode well for the pedestrian.
What protection is there for pedestrians? We are up against 2-ton vehicles made of metal. Yeah, I know there are plastic bumpers (which is oxymoronic, but that’s neither here nor there) and fiberglass, but they still weigh a lot. With blind spots more prevalent in some makes and models (think big clunkers), pedestrians are really the ones that have to watch out for cars. Alleyways are perhaps the worst for pedestrians. I love them from an aesthetic and design perspective, but damn, people don’t seem to realize that they cut right through the sidewalk. That’s right, driveways and alleyways cut through sidewalks, not the other way around. I’m no historian, but I’m pretty sure that people have been walking a bit longer than they’ve been driving. Look, I’m not perfect. I pulled out of an alley the other day and didn’t notice a pedestrian walking her dog. That’s the whole point though, drivers are immune to pedestrians.
It still gets my blood boiling though when I’m walking on the sidewalk and someone driving their behemoth with no regard for the pedestrians rolls right through the sidewalk. I get angry and flip the bird on occasion, but that doesn’t mean I advocate violence. What I am advocating is pedestrian rights. Years ago I worked with someone who was the president of our city’s walkability group. I was pretty naive at the time and didn’t think much of it, maybe even questioning why on earth the city had a walkability group. I was young and ignorant. Now I’m older and angry. I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks.