2006_02_25_critmass.jpg
In all the excitement of a three-day weekend we plum forgot that this past Friday was the last Friday of the month. And you know what that means don't you? Time for the police to go out and give tickets willy-nilly to every other person they see on a bicycle. Mike over at Bike Blog wasn't able to attend this months Critical Mass either, but he still managed to pull together a report on this months ride, and it looks like it was one of the worst ones yet. A few choice bits:

- 8:09 pm "people at 8th and Broadway got really bizarre tickets. Told by police that they are being stopped and ticketed for being in the middle of the street...hmmm, I thought you were supposed to ride your bike in the street. Anyway, ticket says...bikes were more than 2 abreast, which legally we have found to be a ridiculous charge. People being ticketed were told to stay in the middle of the street while being written the bogus offense. Tourist from Amsterdam got ticket on his first critical mass, now he has a court date and is leaving the country in a week...welcome to NYC."

- 9:00 pm "At Columbus Circle a woman with a bike was buying ice cream from a truck. She was slightly in the street, police arrested her."

- 9:34 pm "One guy had recieved a ticket earlier for not having a head lamp. At the Library he was issued another ticket for no light...He pleaded with the cops and said, what am I supposed to do...go to a bike shop and get a lamp. He was rewarded with two more tickets."

- 9:50 pm "Got a report that around 40th and Broadway a woman was doored by a cop car while in motion. She was in the bike lane. She face planted and broke her colar bone. There is credible evidence that entire incident was witnessed."

OK, this is out of control! At this point in the game, with gas prices at the level they are at, to have the city government using its police force to treat bicyclists in such an inappropriate and deplorable manner is just absurd. Mike Bloomberg, whose administration has lots to be proud of otherwise, needs to get his priorities in order and get a grip, otherwise this is only going to get worse before it gets better. It's just common sense!

Photograph of the February CM from everyday_i_live's flickr stream.