Tea Party Rejects Light Rail Because of Potential Terrorism

Arguing against a regional transportation tax, the Georgia Tea Party says that we shouldn't build any more light rail because terrorists might see it as an attractive target.

J.D. Van Brink, chair of the Georgia Tea Party's board, said in an interview with the Marietta Daily Journal that anyone who doesn't believe him should look to terrorism on rail in England and Spain:

"...if we have a more decentralized mass transit system using buses, if the terrorists blow up a single bus, we can work around that. When they blow up a rail, that just brings the system to a grinding halt. So how much security are we going to have on this rail system, and how much will it cost?" said Van Brink.

Treehugger's Lloyd Alter comments, "...by his logic, one shouldn't build anything where people gather."

Full Story: Tea Party Says Don't Build Light Rail, It Might Attract Terrorists



Cars, sprawl & addiction to Arab oil cause terrorism, not rail!

The radical Right is at it again, shilling for the oil, auto and weapons companies that profit so handsomely from America's fondness for cars, sprawl, Arab oil and the War on Terror, all while denigrating passenger rail.

This story takes the cake. One gets the feeling it's not so much that right wingers are trying to warn us against the threat of terrorism, as they are threatening us with it, themselves.

Paranoia and terminal decline

Just another example of how America has become the most paranoid country on the planet and yet another sign that this country is in terminal decline.


Avoiding Terrorism

For the same reason, I say don't build nuclear power plants, don't build freeways and don't build the Keystone XL pipeline.

All of these are more vulnerable to terrorism than light rail, so I presume that the Tea Party opposes them all.

Charles Siegel

Todd Litman's picture

Misguided Fear

This is misguided. Even accounting for terrorism risk public transit is far safer than other modes of travel. See:

"Risk Versus Dread: Implications for Planners; or Let's Not Let The Terrorists Win" (www.planetizen.com/node/33271).

Todd Litman (2006), “Terrorism, Transit and Public Safety: Evaluating The Risks,” Security World International (www.securityworldmag.com), Vol. 8 No. 3, Mar/Apr 2006, pp. 78-81; at www.vtpi.org/transitrisk.pdf.

Todd Alexander Litman
Victoria Transport Policy Institute
"Efficiency - Equity - Clarity"

Lamest of the Lame

Not to say that a terrorist attack on a light rail system isn't possible or that it won't happen, but that's a lame excuse not to expand a light rail system. Let's be honest: The Georgia Tea Party are against anything that requires a tax hike, regardless of whether it's beneficial or not.

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