Opinion

'The only reason we hate cyclists is because we love them'

Cyclists make their way through the streets of Ipswich.
Cyclists make their way through the streets of Ipswich. Rob Fenton

The only reason we hate cyclists is because we secretly love them! That's the conculsion journalist Joe Hildebrand came to after a fiery debate on Channel 10's Studio 10 show when the question was asked why everybody hate cyclists so much.

Writing online after the show, Hildebrand explained: "The reason motorists get so furious at cyclists yet are largely untroubled by bus drivers, truckies is because if it comes to an encounter with a road train we only have our own lives and that of several hundred cattle to worry about.

"By contrast, the slightest contact with a cyclist could send them to the Great Velodrome in the Sky and it's that anxiety that sends our pulses racing - it is our fear that leads to anger, our anger that leads to hate," he said.

What do you think about this? Do you agree with Hildebrand's argument? Here's what you said on Facebook:

Christopher Johnstone - "I don't think this is a trivial issue. It is not often that I come across a cyclist but when I do, I get nervous because they tend to ride closer to the line or the more than two across. I get frustrated by riders who ignore the rules and put everyone, including themselves, at risk. I fear the day I might get into an accident with a cyclist."

Lassen Lisa - "Stop riding on the white line on the Centenary Hwy when you have five metres of space on the left. Cars are travelling 100km/ h, even if they are leaving space and staying the legal distance (I would be scared of cars coming past me at those speeds). It's only a matter of time before an inexperienced driver or someone on drugs or drunk knocks someone off their bike."

Rachael Goodes - "I only hate cyclists that don't follow the road rules and the ones who ride on the road when its barely wide enough for one small car to go through let alone give 1m clearance! There are road rules for a reason and just because they are not a 'motor vehicle' doesn't mean they are free to do as they please. These rules are also there to keep them safe too. It needs to be legalised everywhere too that cyclists are allowed to ride on any footpath as well (many councils have it where anyone over the age of 12 cannot ride bikes on footpath unless its a shared pathway which is stupid)."

Andrew Lebeter - "Joe Hildebrand should be sacked over this article. Absolutely disgusting journalism!"

Debbie Davidson - "(Hildebrand) are you going to take responsibility for your hateful reporting when a cyclist is targeted tomorrow morning?

Jason Waddell - "Good job inciting this type of hatred. You've just put the lives of cyclists at risk with bone headed posts like this. You should be ashamed." Adam Clay - "So people aren't allowed to have opinions in case someone's feelings get hurt?"

Chris Tolliday - " I don't hate cyclists. Hating doesn't solve the problem makes it worse."

Baldeep Singh - "No, more people should be cycling, they'll be less congestion and fatties that way."

Michael Storey - "I don't have an issue with cyclists, most of them are ok and ride with some level of awareness. Its when you come up on a rider that is riding in the "middle" of the lane and when there is a group of three or more riding next to each other that annoys."

Topics:  cycling facebook 360 opinion



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