(new emerging Sydney cyclist!)
(negotiating King Street, Newtown)
(this cyclist deserves protection from mandatory helmet laws notwithstanding his type of bicycle - a 1980 Black Diamond road bike)
In view of all the scientific evidence, the continuation of our mandatory helmet laws is expressly a desire, and is NOT a legal basis for the infringement of our civil liberties.
Regulation 256 is conflicting and fragmented, and it has clearly increased the possibility of random interferences with our legitimate liberties. The existing evidence deduced so far is compelling to justify an immediate repeal of the mandatory requirement for wearing a helmet whilst riding a bicycle.
How can anyone explain why you must wear a helmet if you're a passenger on a 3 or 4 wheeled bicycle but not if you're a paying passenger on a 3 or 4 wheeled bicycle? Why is it safer to pay someone to be a passenger, yet more dangerous to get a free-ride? Why is it more dangerous for mothers and fathers to ferry around their children and if they imposed a "pocket money deduction" on their offspring, would they qualify for an exemption?
The most exasperating angle to all this is that we all know that my questions are silly, and that the reality is commercial. None of the state governments were ever prepared to anihilate the businesses of bicycle rickshaws, hence the legislated deviancy. In fact it appears in this instance that the rationale for safety was expediently dispensed with and continues to be so.
...and so back to the issue raised this week by the SMH's article on Tuesday. Pushing one type of bicycle over another automatically leads to questions of whether there are new commercial interests on the horizon. Exactly who are the stakeholders? and why are we becoming so polarised? Do advocates for the discriminating 'Road Rules amendment' have any vested interests in European bikes, or electric bikes, or green or blue paint? Could it even be more sinister? Could such an amendment be the prelude to eventually barring cyclists from the roads all together as Carl Scully expressly articulated last year.?
Should any one type of bicycle get more favourable treatment than another? I vehemently canvas "NO" in the name of civil liberties and anti-discrimination. Advocating 'no helmets' for 'sit-ups' but continuing with 'helmets' for the road bikes et al, is somewhat analagous to Noam Chomsky's blunt sentiment that "if we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all."
When mandatory helmet laws are repealed, they must be repealed for everyone - helmets ought to be a matter for choice, whatever the bike you ride & whatever the clothes you wear.
(give him a break!)