May is Asian American Native Hawaiian Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, and coincidentally it’s Bike Month. Having written a number of times about racism in general, attending two Black Lives Matter movement bike rides / protests, and also about Native Americans, I’d be remiss if I didn’t touch on this community. As a white person, I certainly have no right to speak for them (and I’m not). But I can certainly show a few faces and amplify their voices one tiny bit. It’s always worth being curious, seeking understanding, and being part of the wider world by doing more than just eating ethnic cuisine if and when the opportunity arises. Here are a few things I learned, and let’s meet a few great cyclists as well.Continue reading
Bikes Are Colorblind, They Just Want to Be Ridden
It’s Black History Month in the United States of America, so it would be bad form for a progressive to not pay homage to that (which I did earlier when mentioning the impact of the Black Panther movie) Some people have the mistaken belief that only rich white men in Spandex ride bicycles. They are wrong.
Where I live, I frequently see people of color riding bicycles, usually at night, apparently commuting home from work. They usually don’t have lights or helmets or fancy bikes. But they are cyclists just the same, risking their lives to go about their lives, which includes transporting themselves with their own people power. Leonel Hernandez, who died last month, was one of them.
Today, within the space of 10 minutes, I met a black dude named Ivory and a couple from Thailand named Nukul and Rung, each on a bike. You really meet the coolest people on bikes — of whatever color, status or nationality. You never would probably barely even see them from your motorized steel pollution cage.