Donna and I walked over to her sister’s house on Saturday. It’s easily less than two miles, but the route travels across I-440 overpass and continues on 21st Avenue. Along the way, we were nearly run over three times, one time I had to jump back because the driver was speeding through a corner, looking back at traffic, and didn’t see me until I screamed at him.
It’s amazing how drivers are oblivious to bicyclists and especially walkers. Nashvillians believe that people that aren’t driving solely have a responsibility to watch out for themselves. I think every bicyclist and pedestrian does have a responsibility to be safe. But by law, it’s just the opposite. But somehow in Tennessee, if you get run over, the incident will likely be documented as a terrible unavodable accident. Even Grand Juries tend to pass incidents off as tragic accidents. The only exception is the drunk driver that runs over a pedestrian or bicyclist.
Take David Meek – an experienced cyclist in Chattanooga run down by some truck driver that didn’t see him. Didn’t see him? that MF that drove that truck should NEVER drive again. I seriously hope David’s family sues the driver and the company he drove for into bankruptcy.
This kind of injustice is not uncommon. This kind of behavior infuriates me – Traffic Justice must prevail. Citizens of Tennessee, I call on you to abandon your tolerance for this kind of injustice. I am so ashamed at old fashioned conservative ignorance. We must change the way people think. "Unavoidable accident" should be considered an oxymoron. All accidents are avoidable. Someone MUST be at fault.
Walkers are Bums or Lower Class Citizens – the common stereotype. I believe this is what most people think and I’ll explain why. We were walking along 21st and I felt kind of funny – like people might think we didn’t have a car, like maybe people thought we were walking because we couldn’t afford a car, or we had lost our drivers license because we had a DUI or something. We had bags in our hands, so that probably reinforced the stereotype. Nashvillians think that if you’re walking and you don’t have exercise clothes on, you’re at the bottom of the social food chain – can’t afford a car, can’t afford a bus ticket, you must have just gotten out of jail. I believe that THIS is the reason people don’t walk. This has to change.