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Bicycle bashers need common sense

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Do people like George Vann ever bother to think before they write letters to the Journal? In his letter of Aug. 16, he says bicyclists need to get a California license, registration and insurance, the revenue from which could be used to build bike lanes. Sorry, George, but there is no such thing as a California bicycle license or registration. This would require massive spending in setting up a new bureaucracy, writing regulations and exams, hiring new staff, rental or purchase of office space — at a time when the state is facing a $20 billion deficit and more vital services are being cut every day. What a great idea! Further, there is really no such thing as “bicycle insurance.” How many motorists have ever been hurt in a collision with a bicycle? The slight damages that bicycles could do are covered by liability insurance, which most cyclists already have as part of their homeowner’s policy. Finally, Vann wants to set up bicycle and insurance checkpoints and speed traps. Might I suggest he check with Sheriff Ed Bonner about the availability of police officers for such an effort? Or ask the person facing a home intrusion and the woman being mugged who are told there are no police available due to a bicycle insurance checkpoint. Annoying as such letters are, they do serve to show the petty mindlessness and anger that characterize the most vocal of our bicycle-bashing crowd. THAD WESTPHALIA, Auburn