Police Abuse

This Bicycle Registration Law Gives Police Yet Another Excuse To Punish Insufficiently Meek Citizens

A Montgomery County, Maryland, ordinance authorizes impoundment and misdemeanor charges for cyclists who lack the requisite sticker.

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Did you know that residents of Montgomery County, Maryland, are legally required to register their bicycles? Neither did Steve Silverman, who last June received a criminal citation for violating that requirement. In a video about that experience, Silverman, founder of Flex Your Rights, presents it as an example of how "police use ill-conceived laws to punish people who assert their rights." While Silverman's brush with the law was relatively mild as these things go, it does illustrate the problems posed by the myriad excuses that legislators give police for hassling people they deem insufficiently respectful.

Officer Christopher Brown of the Montgomery County Police Department initially pulled Silverman over for running a stop sign while riding his bike in what he describes as "a quiet residential neighborhood." In the police body camera video of the encounter, Silverman suggests that Brown stopped him because he had seen Silverman provide "educational information" to a young man who had just been detained, questioned, and released by Brown and Cpl. Jason Halko. That suggestion evidently irks Brown, who later asks, "Do you just try to intimidate me because you don't want me to give you a ticket, or why?"

Silverman declines to show identification but supplies his name, address, and date of birth. He takes out his smartphone to record the encounter, which leads to this exchange with Halko:

Silverman: I'm also recording the duration of this encounter, officers.

Halko: You don't have a right to record when you're stopped and detained for a violation.

Silverman: I disagree. It's a First Amendment right to record.

Halko: Oh, all right.

Having lost that argument, a sheepish and possibly embarrassed Halko leans into Brown's car and reports that "I don't see a registration sticker on his bicycle." After Halko confirms that Silverman does not have the requisite sticker, Brown radios for a van to pick up the bike. That's right: The same county ordinance that requires registration of bicycles also says police "may impound any unregistered bicycle until the bicycle is properly registered." Although Halko ultimately dissuaded Brown from taking Silverman's bike, the officers still left him with two criminal citations requiring him to appear in court, one for the stop sign violation and one for the unregistered bicycle.

Silverman says he was not aware of the bicycle registration requirement until that day. "I was dumbfounded when they wrote me a ticket for it," he writes in an email. "Afterward, when I learned that it was a criminal summons, I was double-dumbfounded. The registration law is written as a Class C civil violation (i.e., a non-crime). But under Maryland law, the police may write up any class A, B, or C violation as a misdemeanor crime, as they did in my case." If charged as a misdemeanor, a Class C violation is punishable by a $50 fine and up to 10 days in jail if the fine is not paid.

When the November 12 court date rolled around, Silverman and his lawyer showed up, but neither Brown nor Halko did. "When my attorney described the charges, the judge just shook her head in disbelief," Silverman says in his video, "and the prosecutor kind of chuckled as he dropped the charges."

Silverman notes that "I was very fortunate because I could afford to hire a great attorney," and "I didn't need to find child care or risk losing my job to make that court date," which is not the case for many other defendants. He urges legislators to "stop passing laws that give police the power to stop and arrest people, because police will inevitably find creative ways to use those laws to harm people in ways you did not intend." And if legislators find that "police are misusing, for example, mandatory bicycle registration laws," he says, they should "repeal those damn laws."

A couple of legislators already have heeded Silverman's recommendation. Last week, David Moon, a Democrat who represents Silverman's district in the Maryland House of Delegates, posted a link to his video on Facebook, along with the text of the bicycle registration law, urging the Montgomery County Council to "repeal this nonsense." Council Member Tom Hucker (D–District 5) says he wants to re-examine the law. According to a 2016 Citylab report, "Only a handful of mainland North American cities currently have mandatory bicycle registration laws."

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  1. If these fuckers hadn’t demanded millions of dollars be spent on bike lanes for them, I would have some sympathy. But as it is, if they want taxpayer dollars to support their bizarre hobby, they can play by the government’s rules.

    It is really hard to come up with a group less sympathetic than local bureaucrats and cops. But cyclists are that rarest of rare birds. Fuck them. Make them pay. Lock their tights wearing asses up when they don’t.

    1. I agree. The bike lanes should have toll booths to pay for the maintenance.

      1. Yeah, but toll booths are being replaced by electronic tolling. So the bikers will need a license plate to scan so they can receive a bill in the mail.

        Perhaps they can make buying liability insurance to get the license plate.

        1. Yeah, that makes sense. Anyone can own and ride a bike anywhere *except* those special bike lanes/etc. that require electronic tolling and registration.

          1. Sounds like government work.

      2. The spandex clad Lance Armstrong wannabes with the $5 grand bikes aren’t the ones who get punished though. Like all petty laws, it’s the poor Joe who bikes without a helmet and a Newpie dangling from his mouth and bike from junkyard who gets busted

        1. Truth

        2. Yep.

          You must first understand for whom the law was written.

          It’s really matter of dependency. If some poor schmuck is using his bike to get to/from work, the grocery store, doctors appointment; that poor schmuck has some modicum of freedom. This freedom must not be allowed. He needs to pay his $2 and ride the bus like all the other poor schmucks. So then, we’ll just need him to pay some sort of money he can’t afford to register his bicycle, throw in some inconvenience in at the DMV (I.D., proof of residency, birth certificate) and he’ll be riding the bus in no time.

          Maryland did the same thing a few years back with scooters. As the cheap import scooters got more affordable, more people were using them for basic transportation. For less than $300, you could leave home later, not rely on erratic poorly managed public transportation, and still get to work on time. Afterwards, you could stop by the grocery store for a few things on your way home.

          Not anymore. As soon as MD required the scooters to be registered, they were back riding the bus.

      3. Further reason to never use one.

      4. I guarantee you that maintenance of a bike lane is cheap compared to a car lane. If we’re tolling bike lanes, we sure as hell better toll the car lanes.

      1. bizarre hobby

        lolol

        But seriously, stop at the fucking stop signs.

        1. Stop at stop signs, like all drivers do.

          1. No. A car weighs 4000#, accelerates quickly, and has relatively poor visibility. A cyclist+bike is more like 200#, has unobstructed visibility and is much slower. When riding, I stop at stop signs when there are pedestrians or cars who have the right-of-way, but otherwise I don’t. And how is that supposed libertarians become ‘rules-are-rules!’ people when it comes to riding bikes?

          2. Is this a sarcastic comment about drivers not stopping at stop signs? It should be, if it isn’t.

            If it’s a serious request/demand that cyclists stop, “like all drivers do,” for most cyclists, it means you’re fine if cyclists continue doing what they’re already doing. Most drivers don’t stop at stop signs when there are good sight lines and not a lot of traffic. Sure, they’ll usually do a “California Yield”, but except for the idiot cyclists who endanger themselves by driving through crossing traffic, that’s what cyclists do. And those idiot cyclists seem to exist in about the same proportion as idiot motorists.

          3. OT, but remarkably leads to an ethics question.

            When Google was working on their self driving car, they programmed full stops at stop signs. Problem was, the car could never make it trough a 4 way stop because the other drivers never came to a full stop.

            The programmers had to change the software to allow for “rolling stops” thus, intentionally programming the car to break the law.

        2. What makes you think he didn’t? The word of a cop who was fairly clearly in a ‘respect mah authority’ snit?

          1. “What makes you think he didn’t?”

            Oh, watching several hundred bikers blow every stop sign in sight. If he didn’t, he’s the 1%.

            1. I blow stop signs, when it’s safe to do so. Just like many cars do.

              I click into my pedals, and only recently learned to “track stand”.

              If it doesn’t hurt anyone, why do you care? If it causes and accident, the guy with the 300 gram helmet loses, and he knows he does.

              The incentive to not be dangerous is very great when the other option is often death.

          2. The guy ran the stop sign – with his car. The cop looked into the car and saw the bike inside the car, without a registration sticker. Does nobody read the article before commenting?

            1. Read again, it’s a little confusing. The bike was in the cops car.

              “Halko leans into Brown’s car and reports that “I don’t see a registration sticker on his bicycle.””

              “Christopher Brown of the Montgomery County Police Department initially pulled Silverman over for running a stop sign while riding his bike”

    2. Yeah, he ran that stop sign like most bicyclists do and got upset when the cop actually enforced the traffic laws he’s beholden to.

      If you ride your bike on the street you’re a vehicle and all the rules apply to you. I don’t care if it’s inconvenient for you, if it’s that bad then don’t ride the bike on the street.

      In general this level of pettiness from law enforcement is a bad thing, but bicyclists fucking deserve it.

      1. But does anyone really want to be forced to receive what they fucking deserve. I know I don’t.

        1. Goodness no. That doesn’t mean I can’t root for it to happen to other people though.

          1. Love the honesty here!

            1. That was sorta my thesis in freshman poli-sci. The unit was on Justice, I think framed by Antogine(?). I wrote something to to the effect that Justice is terrible, when not levied with mercy. Or something. It’s been a few decades…

              1. Antigone.
                Good story

      2. I don’t see anyone in the article or even the guy who got pulled over disputing the legitimacy of the stop sign ticket. That has nothing to do with the (in)defensibility of the registration-sticker ticket.

      3. Do you always fully stop at a stop sign when no one is coming? Ever jaywalked?

        I don’t think the problem was with the issue with the stopping, but with the registration.

        Also, your tribalism is showing.

      4. You act like cyclists break the rules more than drivers. You notice when cyclists run stop signs because they’re part of a different group. If you start paying attention to your fellow drivers, you’ll realize just how often they run stop signs and red lights.

    3. You know who else forced a population to pay for the indulgences of a tiny elitist minority?

      1. The Czars?

      2. The Catholics?

      3. California?

      4. College admissions boards?

    4. While I agree many cyclists don’t obey stop signs, I don’t see many drivers coming to a full and complete stop either.

      I have been riding my bike for about 30 years, for commuting and recreation. I am not a fan of bike lane though. I try to plan my ride to avoid busy streets. When riding, I pretend I’m a car, and obey the rules (I drive a car also).

      As for insurance, I have health, homeowners and auto. My liability is taken care of, so I need more?

      Here is deal I’m willing to make, since some cyclists break the rules, none of them should be allowed to use public roads. But same needs to apply to drivers and pedestrians. Now how do we get around?

      1. Do you wait your ass in line at red lights?
        Car > bike.
        Car wins, and you should be grateful cars allow you on the same streets as them

      2. “While I agree many cyclists don’t obey stop signs, I don’t see many drivers coming to a full and complete stop either.”

        Bullshit.

        1. You’ve never seen a driver run a stop sign? You should lose your license if you’re so blind.

    5. In a large crowded city like New york, it’s not the bikes that should be registered; it’s the bikers. Biking perils to pedestrians include speeding, cycling the wrong way on one-way streets, going through red lights, and cycling on sidewalks. These reckless misbehaviors are already illegal, but for all practical purposes the rules are unenforceable. The offenders simply whiz off and disappear, with no fear of apprehension. This impunity has developed because there is currently no way for police or pedestrians to quickly identify and record the free-wheeling offenders.

      Solution: Bikers should be required to wear light-weight reflective vest bibs, with 5-inch numbers front and back, like the ones worn by marathoners. Purchased in bulk, they would cost only a few dollars apiece. The City should require all cyclists to register with a simple photo i.d., and issue the bibs to cyclists free of charge. Cyclists who ride without registered bibs would face impoundment of their bikes, parallel to what happens to motor vehicles driven by unlicensed drivers.

      We live in a city where even the teensiest impalpable risk to life and limb is regulated and controlled [e.g., smoking in parks and beaches; almost a limit in the size of soft-drinks]. We give cyclists bike lanes, but require nothing in the way of insuring pedestrian safety in return. That must change.

      1. Since giving the government more authority to register things is seldom a good idea, I have a counterproposal; alter the laws so that striking an adult rider who was violating the rules of the road counts as misdemeanor littering at worst. Ride according to traffic laws? You get the protection of traffic laws. Ride like a squirrel on crack? If you get hit it’s your own bloody fault.

      2. So, it’s OK to be a libertarian and a tribalist as long as you don’t belong to the tribe?

        Abusus non tollit usum.

        If you judge all cyclists by what some cyclists do, then you have to judge all motorists the same way (and yes, I’m a member of both groups). You also have to judge all “libertarians”, Republicans, Democrats, Christians, Muslims, Atheists, Agnostics…

        Need I go on?

        1. Thank God there’s someone with some sense in this thread.

    6. Not all of us where tights lol

    7. Shouldn’t the government rules be the same for everyone?

      I propose a revision of the law so that the cops can confiscate any car driven by an unlicensed or uninsured driver, is not registered, or otherwise fails to comply with legal requirements for vehicles operated on public streets.

      Most bike lanes are paint on the street and have negligible cost, especially considering the amount we spend on driving infrastructure.

      1. You choose an inferior vehicle for travel.
        Your choice, stop whining

      2. “Most bike lanes are paint on the street and have negligible cost, especially considering the amount we spend on driving infrastructure.”

        Pathetic lefties; ‘it’s only a little bit pregnant’.
        Fuck off, slaver.

    8. I’m a cyclist, and I fucking hate bike lanes. They’re confusing for motorists and cyclists under certain circumstances, they cost a lot of money, and subtract from the total number of lanes for through traffic. They totally suck.

      One of the routes I like to cycle involves a street that used to have two lanes of traffic each way, while being very lightly used. Even at rush hour I could peacefully ride my bike down this road and not be an obstruction to motorists. So of course the city decided to cut this to one lane each way and put in bike lanes.

      Now people park in the bike lanes most of the time, rendering them largely unusable. I also have to compete with motorists for the only lane of traffic now. Which is both unsafe and stressful.

      They internally spent thousands of dollars to create a problem where there was none.

      1. They added bicycle lanes to a local thoroughfare with lotsa traffic, lotsa stores lining the sides.
        Before, people turning right off the thoroughfare would pull into the shoulder lane, then turn right.
        Now that the shoulder lane has a painted bike lane, people are turning right from the traffic lane.
        I seldom see bicyclists using the bicycle lanes.

    9. That’s what I thought. He probably advocated for more bike lanes. Well, guess what? More mandated bike lanes means more people using bikes. This also may include ‘Johnny come lately’ enthusiasts who don’t understand the ‘unwritten codes and etiquettes’ of road cycling who embrace all kinds of stupid laws and ordinances like the one mentioned here.

      I’ve been hearing whispers of bike registration on the premise ‘well, since now you have lanes and share the road, you have to also register just like a car.’ Even though bikes aren’t motorized. Which makes me wonder, if I understand the logic, will pedestrians who use public ‘roadz’ have to register too?

      I’m a cyclist but I go in the damn fields away from civilization and all these pretenders who clog up lanes and act like foolish jackasses that lead to draconian laws.

    10. Note to foreign readers: The sockpuppet is an obese Republican who votes GOP and is here only to disrupt Libertarian conversations.

    11. Bizarre hobby? People have been cycling for over a hundred years.
      We already pay for road maintenance through vehicle registration fees.
      We need bike lanes because people in cars have blatant disregard for cyclists’ right of way. Which usually ends up with cyclists getting injured or killed.
      And when you complain about the “tights”, it’s hilarious, i.e, you sound fat.

      1. He’s so far gone, actual reason no longer exists. Automobile worship in the US has gotten so extreme, that its adherents act like driving to every single destination is somehow the natural state of the universe. The fact that there are road uses other than driving a 2-ton death machine is lost on them, despite roads existing thousands of years prior to the automobile.

    12. Hey, Tribalist!

      I am a crazy cyclist, who rides those things in MN and WI in the winter, and I have NEVER demanded a bike lane. I don’t want them. I want to be treated like normal traffic. I live in a rural area, for Pete’s sake!

      How about you think before you post, huh?

  2. How about legally requiring people to register their *clothing*? Think of the JOBS! Think of the REVENUE!

    1. Then they can bust you for public nudity when they impound your unregistered clothing.

      Not to mention the baggie in your pocket which gets displayed in public.

  3. For all you not familiar with Montgomery county, MD count yourself lucky and avoid going there at all costs. Speeding cameras everywhere and this is the same place that stole those two children twice from their parents for walking alone (see Lenore’s coverage). There are a multitude of other reasons as well too numerous to list.

    1. In general, if something in your life requires you to go to Maryland you should seriously consider whether that needs to be part of your life or not.

      1. And yet, it is still better than the states’ around it. Virginia and New Jersey are really that bad.

        1. Eh, Virginia was nice, and there are parts of it that are still wonderful. The parts connected to Maryland are ruining it for the rest of the state. Come January when the Dems control the entire state government I expect it to go full progtard and ruin what’s left of the state.

          Speaking of that, no Reason coverage about legislators threatening to use the National Guard to confiscate guns? Seems pretty newsworthy and most MSM is mum about it.

          1. Where did you see that?

            1. https://wset.com/news/at-the-capitol/va-rep-suggests-military-enforcement-for-new-gun-legislation-national-guard-responds

              Things are heating up rapidly in VA and almost no one is talking about it. I’ve seen almost no mention of this in national coverage, only local stories getting passed around gun forums.

              Who knows how serious he is, but it clearly generated enough noise in VA that the National Guard felt like they had to issue a statement.

              1. Also, at least one county has officially started forming a militia: https://www.lawenforcementtoday.com/it-begins-virginia-forms-active-militia-to-protect-sheriffs-citizens-from-unconstitutional-laws/

                We live in interesting times.

              2. I suspect that most guardsmen are also private gun owners and are not going to enforce Coonman’s edict.

                1. I suspect you’re right and I hope we never find out. I’ve also seen some analysis that Trump can supersede the Governor in that regard, he may decide those VA guard units are better suited for a tour just when the Governor needs them. Pure coincidence of course.

                  1. Or he can pull what Eisenhower did with the National Guard at Little Rock’s Central High School.

                    “”Eisenhower knew he had to act boldly. He placed the Arkansas National Guard under federal control and sent 1,000 U.S. Army paratroopers from the 101st Airborne Division to assist them in restoring order in Little Rock. “”

                    http://www.americaslibrary.gov/aa/eisenhower/aa_eisenhower_littlerock_3.html

                2. Need some MFin oath keepin up in here.

              3. Progtards must be taught their place, and soon. If that shit goes down, it’s time for things to get real.

                1. Virginia is hardly the place to push their luck. If they’re looking for a gunfight, they’ll find one.

          2. I have thought for a long time that if DC wants statehood so badly, they should give it to them and throw NoVa, Montgomery and PG counties in with the deal. That would solve a lot of problems.

            1. I am willing to cede more portions of Maryland to DC. NoVA should already be DC anyway. I’d also try to sweeten the deal by returning federal lands in the west to those states (or form another state to make it an even 52 states).

              1. You know all those federal lands out west aren’t adjacent?

                1. New states of North and South Gerrymander?

        2. NJ is bad, but I don’t know of any hard core bicycle enforcement going on here.

          1. Day ain’t over yet.

    2. Yeah, everyone drives slow af, but then you remember, oh yeah, the fucking speed cameras everywhere.

    3. I lived there for a little under a year. Never again. The place is the Red Square of the People’s Republic of Maryland.

    4. It was my birthplace, but my family got out when I was 12

  4. Far be it from me to defend an asshole cop being an asshole, but it was a bicyclist stopped for running a stop sign that triggered the whole thing. I’ve seen too many bicyclists who seem to think the rules of the road don’t apply to them but get all bent out of shape over motorists not respecting their right to be on the road for me to want to defend the asshole biker either.

    1. Eh. Context is necessary. There biker have materials to someone the cop had already stopped. Was the biker fleeing from the cop? It says a residential area. Was it a 4 way stop and no cars around with clear view? No ticket necessary. If it required a stop, fine. I agree most bikers are jerks, but I still like them better than cops…

    2. I’ve seen too many bicyclists who seem to think the rules of the road don’t apply to them…

      Drivers break the law all the time, too. Have you ever seen a driver come to a full stop for a stop sign when there’s no cross traffic? Do you, as a driver?

      Drivers seem to think it’s obvious that cyclists should act like they’re driving cars. That might be what the law requires, but it doesn’t make any sense. It makes as much sense for a cyclist to stop for a stop sign as it does for a pedestrian.

    3. No one seems to have read the article carefully. The guy was in his car. He rolled through a residential stop sign and got pulled over. Cop saw the bike in/on the car and decided to try and give him a ticket for anything he could. I cycle. I know cyclists can be annoying but this is a horrible law. I am only in Montgomery County a few times a year and it’s a few times too much. Used to live there 10 years ago. Why is more regulation the answer? Get off your lardo ass and ride a bike.

      1. “Officer Christopher Brown of the Montgomery County Police Department initially pulled Silverman over for running a stop sign while riding his bike in what he describes as “a quiet residential neighborhood.” ”

        Seems like he was on his bike. Also wearing helmet in the video.

  5. Nothing but good will come from the bicycle registration law.
    It gives our ruling elites more money so they can purchase more luxury real estate to show off to their neighbors.
    It will aggrandize the power of the police so they can beat, shoot and harass the peasants.
    It will create another useless, needless and expensive bureaucracy so we can all throw all our excess capital to improve the lives of bureaucrats.
    It will add to the already burdensome load of cases the DA and our judiciary so that important cases involving rape, murder, armed robbery, etc. will be further delayed.
    It will also put people who can’t afford bail be put in our prison industrial complex as they lose their jobs, homes and dignity.
    Won’t life be wonderful?

  6. “When my attorney described the charges, the judge just shook her head in disbelief,” Silverman says in his video, “and the prosecutor kind of chuckled as he dropped the charges.”

    The prosecutor’s an asshole for not dropping this before it got to trial.

    1. That would be a good one to go for to whoever runs against him. “Waste your time and money? Vote for McPedant”.

    2. The prosecutor probably had his first look at the case file during court. They don’t go all Law And Order for misdemeanors and traffic citations.

  7. Mess with the bull you get the horns that lazy legislators gave the bull.

  8. Best example i’ve seen yet of “the process is the punishment”.

  9. onion? kids in the hall?

  10. “Forget it Jake. It’s Montgomery County.”

  11. but, but, but…….don’t bicyclist commit the bulk of violent crimes?
    “LOL

  12. The writer points out that municipalities need to stop creating such laws because it gives police a creative way to harass citizens. Does he not realize that is the only reason why laws like that are written? It has nothing to do with safety, or financial, this is about making sure citizens know they are under the scrutiny of government at every second of every day.

  13. I am just glad that the officers did not just shoot the bicyclist on sight for daring to disobey THE LAW. Or that the prosecutor did not demand the death penalty for not stopping at the stop sign and worse driving without a registration. We need to remember that this is Montgomery County Maryland where the tyrants from China and Russia and North Korea come to learn how to abuse and harass their own.

  14. Insufficiently teachable?
    Hmm.

  15. As an avid cyclist for over 40 years, It seems to me that we are treated as second class citizens. Now the guy should have paid the fine for running the stop sign. He was just lucky that there were no-shows at the court hearing. He would get no sympathy from me if he were forced to pay the fine. He makes all cyclists appear to be lawbreakers. I say we are treated as second class citizens because if you are a working, sober, adult you can run over and kill a cyclist with little chance of any significant repercussions. Just sayin’.

    1. Yes, you poor folks are treated as second class citizens: you don’t even get your own DMV or high registration fees. You should then be happy that Montgomery county is addressing this disparity!

      As for your “second class citizen status”, there are usually few significant legal repercussions for having a minor traffic collision; such collisions are inevitable in the real world. It’s your fault that you choose to use the kind of vehicle in which a minor traffic collision frequently is fatal. Perhaps bicyclists should simply be banned from roads that are paid for largely by drivers.

      1. Why do you think cyclists aren’t also motorists? Why are you such a Tribalist? When will you learn:

        First they came for the cyclists…

    2. “rbike
      December.17.2019 at 9:29 pm
      As an avid cyclist for over 40 years, It seems to me that we are treated as second class citizens”

      Your choice
      Bike isn’t even 2nd class relative to car, so you’re being treated very generously

    3. rbike
      December.17.2019 at 9:29 pm
      “As an avid cyclist for over 40 years, It seems to me that we are treated as second class citizens.”

      As a human being for much longer than that, I can state that you are full of shit.
      See that stop sign, biker Bob? That means STOP!

  16. What irks my craw is that Montgomery county kidnapped my father. They tried to kidnap a child of close relation. They stuck guns in my face. They did any number of things to me and my family. I told reason all of this. Not newsworthy, but bikes yeah sure. Ftw.

    1. That was you? Damn. Well, I wouldn’t take it personally. This is the same outfit that claims to be libertarian but publishes significant amount of work from people like Shihka Dalmia, and many of their staff voted for Hillary and Obama in the past.

      I mostly come here for the comments anymore. As for you, I hope things are better now.

      1. Yup, I talked to Christian today, he said thanks but no thanks basically. So yeah, I had a long talk with my child. All about how news is what is fit to print. Propaganda iow. I’m good except to see such a low blow. Try to hold on.

  17. This just provides an additional tool for getting the Spandex commandos who have lobbied for millions of dollars of highway funds to be diverted to providing special lanes and bike paths.
    If these people would actually follow the Traffic Laws that they are Legally Required To Obey I might have more sympathy for them.
    As a Professional Driver I’ve seen too many times where these people ignore traffic control and blow through not just stop signs but put everyone on the road at risk by blowing through Red Signal Lights.
    They get themselves into a self induced state of intoxication through the endorphins their bodies produce while they are pedaling and their judgement and caution goes out the window.
    The registration fees involved are not even a tithe towards offsetting the amounts being spent for “special treatment” of bicyclists. The licensing is long overdue.

  18. Sorry, a comment in the story reminds me of a joke I just can’t resist telling.
    “Silverman notes that ‘I was very fortunate because I could afford to hire a great attorney’,”

    A farmer named Jed was being prosecuted on bestiality charges. He asked a friend to recommend a lawyer. The friend said, “Well, I know one lawyer who is a crack trial attorney, but he’s expensive and he can’t pick a jury worth a damn.” The friend continued, “I know another lawyer who ain’t a good trial attorney, but he’s pretty cheap and he really knows how to pick a jury.” Jed went with the second lawyer.

    However, he immediately had regrets when the prosecution put their lead witness on the stand. The witness said, “I seen Jed mount his sheep from behind, and when he was done, I seen the sheep turn and lick Jed’s pecker.” Jed’s heart sank.

    But his hopes rose when he saw a juror in overalls turn to another juror and say, “Yeah, a good sheep will do that.”

    1. Good one haha

      That is a keeper.

  19. I don’t understand why people think that selective non-enforcement of laws is a libertarian position.

    I mean, if that’s your view, why not get upset that property and income tax laws are enforced? Those are far more destructive than bicycle stickers.

    1. I am upset they are enforced. The State is evil, and taxation is theft.

      Do you want the same article every day about the greatest evil?

  20. These laws are another reason we need to TAKE BACK power from politicians by letting voters DIRECTLY vote on laws with voter referendums.

    1. Go ahead, Paleface… walk the hood and see how many voters volunteer to help. I’ve done it, and am really glad to cast a law-changing spoiler vote every chance I get–instead of wasting my breath on the apathetic and mindless. South of Brownsville folks are taxed to buy fake media subsidies for looter parties for whom they are then force to vote at gunpoint. Libertarian parties are withere banned or euchered out on some technicality in a 70000-word constitution or million-word “election” code.

  21. I roll though stop signs when its safe on my bike just like every person in town (including me) does in their car. If you want to give me a ticket for either, fine, make it quick and move the hell on. Bike registration is retarded though.

    Also bike lanes are the fucking worst and people either dont know how to or refuse to use them correctly; would rather they didnt even exist. Rather just have a wider overall road and people use it correctly

  22. “Did you know that residents of Montgomery County, Maryland, are legally required to register their bicycles? Neither did Steve Silverman, who last June received a criminal citation for violating that requirement…”

    Yeah, I’m sure that he missed the notifications and the comments by his fellow spandex warriors.

  23. Oh, and:
    “…one for the stop sign violation…”

    He’s lucky they didn’t get him for the other 20 stops signs he blew.

  24. A lot of people seem to hate bicyclists, but bicyclists are more annoying than truly dangerous. Bad cyclists are at greater risk of harm to themselves than the people in their large, heavy, metal boxes that are annoyed by the bicyclists.
    Besides, in this particular case, we’re not talking about a bicyclist on a busy New York City thorougfare, but a guy on a low-traffic residential street in Montgomery County, Maryland. His risk to drivers was minimal, if not nil.

  25. Registered bicycles.

    “How bout that dog Mr. That there a registered dog?”

    “There is a ministry of dogs?”

    “If I were you I’d get that dog registered.”

  26. Every time I attach my unregistered bike to the front of an Austin bus I remember “The Great Escape.” In that movie escapees from a National Socialist prison camp flee in all directions, but the Australian played by James Coburn makes it to occupied France just in time to see the Resistance splatter a bunch of Nazi officers. He escaped on a requisitioned bicycle.

  27. ITT: wall-to-wall hypocrites letting their seething hatred of cyclists cloud their vision of liberty, suddenly becoming screeching ‘IT’S THE LAWWWWW!!!!’ conservatives over rolling through a fucking residential stop sign as if they’ve not done the same themselves, never broken traffic laws every single fucking day they drive. Keep your eye on the ball, fools.

    1. Obeying the law as written isn’t a particularly conservative value. Neither is disobeying it a libertarian value.

      1. It depends on the law.

  28. As long as we require other road vehicles to be licensed and to pay fees associated with licensing, I see no reason not to require this of bicycles. When I was a kid growing up in Milwaukee, we had to obtain and display a license plate, and go get that plate we had to sit through a bike safety lecture and take a little test.

    As a result, I knew more about the rules of the road as an 8-year-old bicyclist than a whole lot of the adult ninjas do. I look at bicyclists and wonder how many of them have a death wish.

    1. Sounds like fun with your licensed plate bicycle in Milwaukee.

      Trying to remember. Where I was eight we had bikes and other stuff.

      There was “death hill” nobody got seriously hurt there. It was a steep hill with a bump. Got your bike down it or in the winter snow sled you could get some airtime.

      Doubt Milwaukee would have approved.

      Last I recall parents taught their kids how to ride bicycles. One day training wheels went off. Swimming was like that as well.

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