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What's Behind The Wall Street Journal's Odd Anti-Bicycle Rant?

Since it appeared online over the weekend, a humorously odd 5-minute diatribe by Wall Street Journal editorial board member Dorothy Rabinowitz has spread like wildfire. J.K. Trotter considers the possible sources of her anti-bicycle vitriol.
June 5, 2013, 5am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Joe Mazzola

As we've noted previously, the launch of New York City's new bike share program has elicited fierce reaction (both in support and opposition). But a recent interview with Wall Street Journal editorial board member Dorothy Rabinowitz that was posted online over the weekend set a new standard for vitriol. "Ever since," writes Trotter, "[Rabinowitz has] become the most blogged-about nemesis of the already controversial bike-share, with media critics, liberal opinionators, and regular old bike-riders jumping on her comments about transportation '"totalitarians.'" The speed with which her fury has spread must certainly be the envy of similarly opinionated commenters from New York to Los Angeles

Trotter opines on Rabinowitz's impetus, and the seemingly erroneous motivations ascribed to her.  

"So why does Rabinowitz dislike CitiBikes so much?" concludes Trotter. "This is perhaps the only question that Rabinowitz does not truly answer, instead intimating that all bicyclists — instead of cab drivers — intentionally threaten the wellbeing of Manhattanites, if not their actual lives, by swerving in and out of traffic and terrorizing the city's sidewalks. (Her other complaints concern CitiBike's color scheme, kiosk placement, and the debunked myth that its bike racks impede the work of emergency personnel.) Which is to say that, like basically all the other backlash directed at CitiBike, the issue here concerns bikes and their place in a city's transportation ecosystem, not the manner in which they are rented or shared."

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Published on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 in The Atlantic Wire
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