Cyclists should share the costs, too

Letter to the editor

Posted: Friday, May 18, 2007

The recent "Thanks to all the road users" (Sunday's Juneau Empire) reminds us that common sense and courtesy are what makes safe use of our roads by everyone possible.

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The issue I have with the letter is the unwritten assumption that cyclists and motorists posses an equal right to the use of our roads. Cyclists ask us to accommodate them as if they were just another vehicle on the road (and many operate their bike in that manner, refusing to yield to traffic like other motorists). They aren't.

It appears most can afford a $1,800 titanium bike, $500 designer latex tights, $300 shoes and aerodynamic head gear complete with racing stripe and rear-view mirror. If we are going to be asked to share the road, let's ask cyclist to share the costs by requiring the purchase of a road-use permit - similar to a boat-launch permit, a fishing license, duck stamp, boat registration, hazardous-waste fee, public park day-use fee, vehicle registration or the 20 percent tax on every gallon of gas we buy to build roads they ask us to "share."

Let's not make an assumption of parity that simply doesn't exist.

Robert Tonkin


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