That anarcho-pink rag The Wall Street Journal is using that phrase not in alarm, but as a challenge to join in, on bikes. This story is getting lots of play in the feeds I follow, but I can’t not link to it. Here’s my fair-use excerpt to leave something useful after the link expires in ten days:
Bike-friendly cities in Europe are launching a new attack on car culture. Can the U.S. catch up?
By NANCY KEATES
May 4, 2007; Page W1
COPENHAGEN – No one wears bike helmets here. … People bike while pregnant, carrying two cups of coffee, smoking, eating bananas. At the airport, there are parking spaces for bikes. … In Amsterdam, 40% of commuters get to work by bike. In Copenhagen, more than a third of workers pedal to their offices. … A major thrust is a host of aggressive new measures designed to shift bike commuting into higher gear, including increased prison time for bike thieves and the construction of new parking facilities that can hold up to 10,000 bikes. … Worried that immigrants might push car use up, both cities have started training programs to teach non-natives how to ride bikes and are stepping up bike training of children in schools. … The programs for non-natives target those who view biking as a lower form of transportation than cars. … Officials from some American cities have made pilgrimages to Amsterdam. But in the U.S., bike commuters face more challenges, including strong opposition from some small businesses, car owners and parking-garage owners to any proposals to remove parking, shrink driving lanes or reduce speed limits. Some argue that limiting car usage would hurt business. “We haven’t made the tough decisions yet,” says Sam Adams, city commissioner of Portland, Ore., who visited Amsterdam in 2005.