I don't see any posting in the "Upcoming Rides and Events"
I didn't see any ride reports or information about the January ride.
Has the Critical Mass movement been discontinued, just like the Auto Show Shutdown?
Cyclists and cycling advocates are working diligently to demonstrate to people - particularly motorists - that cycling doesn't cause traffic congestion. Setting out to prove to everyone that cycling causes congestion - by intentionally causing such congestion like this - is not in the interests of cycling.
It isn't just a bike ride. I go on bike rides all the time and don't cause traffic jams. These cause traffic jams, and not accidentally nor incidentally.
As a result, these generate a dislike for cyclists among some motorists who might otherwise be indifferent or sympathetic. In worst case scenarios, that lack of sympathy doesn't promote safety and can even create resentment, and that works against cycling in the political sphere, which adds to why it's not good for the broader cycling community.
In the same way that cars "blowing through stop signs and red lights down Elston" isn't "intended to cause injury to cyclists or pedestrians," I guess. No motorists wants to deliberately hurt anyone.
And, I actually stopped doing CM because it absolutely IS about intentionally trying to cause congestion, if not confrontation.
The last two times I participated in Critical Mass there were riders who sought out confrontation with cars. It wasn't a great experience. I'll save Critical Mass for the warmer months when the crowds are larger.
Sounds like you just have not been showing up the last Friday of every month to be a good example for the rest of the riders.
There have always been a few "massholes" around - but in the clear minority.
I've been on some very fun CM rides, but in hindsight they were all during summer.
Maybe it's changed in recent years, but the one Critical Mass ride I joined 15ish years ago definitely had a sense of civil disobedience and protest, with a goal (at least by some) of intentionally antagonizing motorists during the Friday afternoon rush hour.
Didn't Critical Mass ride onto (or attempt to ride onto) the Kennedy Expressway a few times last year?
It happened only once in August!
Riding your bike with 'friends' on regular city streets may cause congestion, but it is NOT civil disobedience. What/who are you disobeying?
And if several hundred 'friends' join you as you ride lawfully to the extent that cars are inconvenienced by the 'mass' of bikers, who is to object....except the cagers who are delayed getting home? Cars cause similar crowding and congestion all the time...and no one thinks twice.
Except for interstates and a few other posted roads, bike riding is fully permitted on all US streets. And it is a special feeling to ride Critical Mass, filling the streets with cyclists riding at a leisurely pace, while drivers yell and honk! Trapped drivers may be pissed at the delay; but for most, it is a wake-up call! For once, we assert our rights! We demand respect! We will not be pushed out of their way, into special paths and lanes!
I find Critical Mass empowering!
Critical Mass. How 12 times a year 1 day a month undoes the other 30 days of cycling advocacy.
If some cagers were to come up with a scheme to convey that cycling advocates were full of BS and operating under a false flag of safety while pretending to argue for fair treatment and accommodation, then Critical Mass would be it.
It convinces the public, specifically motorists and observant kids in the back seat, that cyclists lack the skills and stake or standing in society to conduct themselves in public with more grace than skateboarders or any other impolite driver who is just on 2 wheels instead of 4.
For your few hours of spite once a month, I have to endure on all of the bad PR you created instead of the goodwill, common sense and normalcy I’m trying to instill with my bike on the road. So maybe give it a rest and stop deliberately portraying cyclists as fringe misfits who can’t get along instead of as normal people who just want to use a bike for transportation.
Whenever you do this you prove to everyone that cycling is just like what Alderman Reilly and John Kass and Alderman Cardenas says it is. You are helping them to destroy cycling more than any letter to the editor or campaign donation ever would. Stop helping them to win.