An Act of AggressionSunday, September 23, 2012
One of my fellow cyclists sent this to me, and it is truly an amazing two minutes of insight into the aggressive insanity that is all-too-common in modern society. I find the obnoxious temperament of the driver in the video to be somewhat disturbing.
Cyclists in Colorado are out for a Sunday morning ride on a road with very little traffic. An SUV comes up behind them, and instead of just going around and being on his or her merry way, the person maintains a line behind the cyclists, getting close to them while honking the horn like a savage. The driver refuses to just go around the cyclists, and instead, he or she stays right on their tails, honking viciously, on and off, for several minutes. Not only did the driver endanger the cyclists, but also other vehicles, some of which were passing the SUV while the vehicle wavered all over the road, attempting to aggress against the cyclists.
The cyclists never once acted out in aggression, in response to the driver’s insane act, which was the right behavior at the time. Who knows what this nutjob might have done had one of the cyclists hoisted the ‘friendly finger’ at the driver? This is a quote from one of the cyclists:
This guy obviously doesn’t like seeing bikes for some reason since he sat behind us for more than five minutes blaring his horn. What’s even worse is we saw him approaching from behind and to be polite we ride single file to give him as much road as possible, as we did with every other car we encountered on this road east of Longmont, CO. This guy was so intent of bugging us that he backed up traffic behind him and cars had to pass him on a double yellow line. It seems he was the one obstructing traffic, not us. We ended up slowing up in order to force him to pass us and go on with his day. Insane. Hopefully this is the worste thing this guy does to cyclists.
The reason I post this is because I have endured this type of harassment for years. I’ve had two men pull over and get out of their vehicle to approach me while I was riding. I’ve had things thrown at me. I’ve been called the “B” word and the “C” word, and everything in between. I’ve ridden my race bikes (legally) in the road and have been yelled at to get on the sidewalk. I’ve ridden my recreational bikes on the sidewalk and I’ve been yelled at get the $%@!*&%^ off the sidewalk. I’ve had cars come as close as they can to grazing me. I’ve had cars go through red lights (or ignore my right-of-way) to whip by me, or in front of me, as close as they possibly can. Usually, I note that the physical profile of the aggressor is stereotypical of folks who hate on cyclists because they are not capable of such irrepressible zest. Additionally, I receive almost no harassment whatsoever while riding in the city (Detroit). The suburbs is where all the aggression occurs.
As expected from any sane libertarian, especially a woman who sometimes rides alone, I pack a handgun, and it is always conveniently within reach while riding. If I ride one of my bikes with a rear rack and trunk, I will carry a second, larger pistol (.45) with me. What happened when those two men pulled over in the road and got out of a red pickup and approached me? I jumped off the bike, stuck my hand in my rear trunk and kept it there, and that was enough to send them scurrying back to their vehicle to move onward. Considering the hatred some people have for cyclists, all cyclists should all be armed and prepared to deal with a worst case scenario.
Any libertarian should note that this act, on the part of the driver, is an act of aggression. The act is being committed without provocation, and the driver ramps up the hostility throughout the incident. The SUV is being used as a weapon to intimidate the 180-pound cyclists on their 21-pound bikes. What is wrong with people? Are they so bored, so uninspired by life, and so vicious that they feel compelled to aggress against and threaten peaceful people who are harming no one? Follow-up reports have indicated that the driver has a history of this behavior, and the incident is under investigation. Now only if the cops would spend their time chasing these lunatics as opposed to harnessing big budgets to harass Mom and Pop America.