Cyclist attacked on East Liberty Blvd–Memorial Day weekend

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Swalfoort
Participant
#

The meeting is at 7:00 p.m. at Union Project (on Tuesday, June 8th).

Meet at Trader Joe’s Plaza at 6:30, planning to leave there as a group at 6:40?


joeframbach
Participant
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Good for me.


skisk8r
Participant
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Scott, Great idea to “Take Back the Night (the Right?)” to use the ELB lanes. I use the lanes bikeing and skating. I can mobilize the inline skating group to join in as well.

Keep us posted!


quizbot
Participant
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In addition to the Tuesday, June 8th Zone 5 meeting… from Patrick Dowd “Council-to-Go at Tazza d’Oro on Thursday night (June 3rd) 6:30-8pm. I anticipate hearing from constituents about recent incidents involving cyclists as well as other concerns. Please join us to share your thoughts and concerns.”


Pierce
Participant
#

I ride basically the entire length of the ELBL’s going to work and coming back from work at night. I’ll keep an eye out for people. People threw snow balls at me earlier in the year (even after one of the kids that knew me was like “chill! chill!”) and I’ve heard of some other people having the same issue (people not on this board)

I don’t think cameras will do jack except make the residents feel like they’re in more of a police state and resent perceived symbols of authoritythe ruling class even more.

Maybe have some more bike outreach in East Liberty, geared towards kids? That’s all my brain can muster right now in the form of a solution. From my tutoring experience, a lot of those kids are pissed off, don’t have much going for them, and were hostilethreatening to me when I knew them and had all their contact info, so I can only imagine how crazy they could potentially get when they don’t know who they’re going after and the victim has no idea who they are.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
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Hoodlums, is it? Idleness? Yep, I’ve read about this before.

Over the space of 200 miles and span of 110 years, we have the wise and wonderful words of Elbert Hubbard.

Anyone wishing to see an actual copy of the 110-year-old book, printed and bound by the author himself, let me know.


quizbot
Participant
#

Park a van full of ninjas on ELB, send some cyclist bait out in downhill gear, and take care of some business when they get jumped. Cops won’t be around to see anything anyway.


edmonds59
Participant
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No, Q, THAT will be when the cops show up.


Swalfoort
Participant
#

Maybe you replace the van full of ninjas with an unmarked van full of Pittsburgh’s finest?


erok
Keymaster
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there’s a Facebook page for the council to go

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=115788241798265


edmonds59
Participant
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A van with free donuts and coffee?


Swalfoort
Participant
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@bedmonds – will you be at the Carnegie TOD meeting tonight?


edmonds59
Participant
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I keep hoping to but have a big deadline on the near horizon.


paulheckbert
Moderator
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Maybe a regular group ride on East Liberty Boulevard would be helpful. Weekly, say. And rather than bunch up and ride fast and reinforce the us-vs-them mentality, maybe ride slow, spread out, talk to onlookers as you ride, invite them to join in. Carry a boom box, play some good music, make it a fun event, more like the join-the-party spirit of the Keg Ride.


Nick D
Participant
#

Maybe have some more bike outreach in East Liberty, geared towards kids?

Scraper bikes.

Maybe a regular group ride on East Liberty Boulevard would be helpful. Weekly, say. And rather than bunch up and ride fast and reinforce the us-vs-them mentality, maybe ride slow, spread out, talk to onlookers as you ride, invite them to join in. Carry a boom box, play some good music, make it a fun event, more like the join-the-party spirit of the Keg Ride.

The way I interpret this is, FOC need to take over ELB


edmonds59
Participant
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On the FOC some of the locals were definitely down with the ride, esp since we rolled down Penn Circle E right when the Kid’n Play or something like that hit. There was love.


scott
Keymaster
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Councilman Patrick Dowd’s “Council-to-Go”

* TONITE: Thursday – June 3, 6:30pm-8:00pm

* Tazza d’Oro, 1125 N Highland Ave, Highland Park (map)

* From the Councilman: “I anticipate hearing from constituents about recent incidents involving cyclists as well as other concerns. Please join us to share your thoughts and concerns.”

East Liberty, Zone 5 Citizen’s Public Safety Meeting

* When: Tuesday, June 8th, 7:00pm-9:00pm

* Where: Union Project, corner of Stanton and Negley

* Residents have planned a ride to this event, meeting at 6:30 in the Trader Joe’s Parking lot

* Click here to join a discussion about this


dannyp
Participant
#

Long time reader (longer time biker), first time poster.

We could talk for quite some time about the use of racialized language here, with people directing their comments not only towards the kids who attack bicyclists but also to all of the kids in the neighborhood and what that really means, but I’m not really inclined to do that here. Not when the direct racial slurs — calling the kids “pre-teen mongrels in training” — didn’t seem to bother most posters here enough to say anything about it.

Seriously, shame on you.

As for the other subject at hand, as what has already been pointed out a 19 year old boy was killed on monday not far from where people are giving reports of bikers being harassed. For as long as people, this bicycle “community,” the police, city council, developers, or whoever, consider bicyclists getting harassed or even assaulted to be more of a problem than kids getting killed, we have larger problems that the law can’t begin to solve. Streets need to be safe for all people, not just people who are your friends or coexist in the same milieu as you.


joeframbach
Participant
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I didn’t realize “mongrel” is a race. I guess from Mongrelia?

I thought it was just a general term like “douchebag”. The more you know…


erok
Keymaster
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I had to look up the definition of “mongrel”

definitely not cool, tho i suspect the original poster didn’t realize how loaded the word is.

i don’t think anyone said or thinks it’s “more of a problem,” rather “another problem”

i’m sure that those powers that be are well aware of gun violence in our communities, but they may not be aware of violence against people going home from work, play, etc


rachel_ding
Participant
#

Mongrel is a derogatory word which refers to people who are of mixed-race.

It’s also been used in reference to mixed-species or mixed-breed animals, especially dogs (that’s how I heard it being used as a child living in the sticks).

I don’t think the poster who used the word was aware of what it meant.. though that doesn’t make it OK and I’m glad it was brought up.


nicholas
Participant
#

Hello dannyp. I think that what you say here about the streets needing to be safe for all people is completely true, but this is a bicycle advocacy forum, not a neighborhood advocacy forum, and so the conversations here are going to form from bicycle-related issues. The fact that the focus of this conversation is not on the safety of the general community and not tackling the greater issue doesn’t mean that those things are dismissed by the people on this board.

Regarding the use of the word “mongrels,” I had to look it up to find out that it was a derogatory racial term, and while I doubt that the person who wrote it intended it in that manner, I think that it is very important to understand the words we choose to use.


dwillen
Participant
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As for the other subject at hand, as what has already been pointed out a 19 year old boy was killed on monday not far from where people are giving reports of bikers being harassed. For as long as people, this bicycle “community,” the police, city council, developers, or whoever, consider bicyclists getting harassed or even assaulted to be more of a problem than kids getting killed, we have larger problems that the law can’t begin to solve. Streets need to be safe for all people, not just people who are your friends or coexist in the same milieu as you.

I mentioned the article that detailed the death of the kid that died on Sunday/Monday. I don’t see that as any less of a tragedy than Justin being beaten so severely he had to be hospitalized with several broken bones (I consider that far more than mere “harassment”, by the way). The fact is, we have a complete story in the case of our friend and some first hand knowledge. It is easier to be upset when you know the whole story, and know the person in the story. If you know the child that was killed and the circumstances that surround his death, please post them here, because I don’t trust the PG article even a little.

Further, this is all moot because any steps taken to stem the “harassment” (beatings, broken bones, dangerous objects thrown) cyclists are experiencing will likely stem violence in the area in general. It isn’t as if we are going to magically make cyclists off limits and the maladjusted youths can continue to shoot and harass everyone else.


dannyp
Participant
#

I’m not sure what the non-racial definition of mongrel is? Even if you’re using it as a generic term to refer to animals (perhaps because of hearing the word being used without knowing what it means) it’s still basically calling kids violent animals, which in this context is pretty fucked up.

It is a word that I have rarely encountered people who aren’t down with the KKK using. (The KKK uses it all the time)

As for it being a different problem – the form of racism that happens here is institutional and does not require any individual to actually think it’s “more of a problem” but rather it’s the totality of the community response. No individual might think that having a bike lane is more important than having decent schools for everyone, but we get bike lanes and not everyone gets a decent school and people notice that.

Imagine how you’d feel if your friend was killed, and a few days later you see a memorial bicycle procession not for your friend, but for someone who (thankfully) wasn’t seriously injured. We all have an instinctual reflex to protect “our own” and mourn “our” losses but throw in power dynamics and inequality and it’s one of the sources of this alienation that, ultimately, hurts and endangers us all.


joeframbach
Participant
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I always associated “mongrel” with Lord of the Flies. Violent animals. Exactly as you described. I’m too young to have any significant experience of what the KKK said or did, outside of what’s taught in schools every February, so the dictionary definition of “mongrel” never sunk in.


mark
Participant
#

danny,

we are certainly not a very racially diverse group here, and probably not that diverse in background either, so sometimes things like this slip through the cracks and they shouldn’t, but this really isn’t the place to be calling out anyone for being racist. the word choice was poor, and the attitude about the kids is uninformed and uninitiated, but as someone who has been both harassed in this area numerous times and worked with these kids in various ways i can say that some of them are rotten, regardless of race… this is true of some kids in troy hll just like its true of this group in east liberty. this is what saltym was referring too, the non-racial definition of mongrel is: despicable person.

over time this board has become less and less radical, which is ok, but it does cause problems when things like race issues are discussed at length. most of the time I just don’t enter into these conversations because this is not the place to talk to people who don’t live in the city or just moved here about race, if you want to do something proactive about it I can hook you up with a space to have a discussion about race, publicly calling out people who you don’t know really isn’t that helpful, especially when this is something based on a misunderstanding, not malice.

if you do want to start a discussion on race please start a thread about it, we can have that conversation. there have been numerous times in the past when people have gone over the line while demonizing motorists or other problems the cycling community has run into, every time the person has realized there error, usually just getting caught up in the moment. I think you will see this is the case here too, throwing around things like KKK and comparing kids to animals is taking things way out of context and pretty blatantly dramatic.

please go to the meeting tonight and make your voice prominent if you’re worried about these issues, that’s probably the best use of your time.


brian j
Participant
#

I was in the middle of a long response, but Mark summed up my feelings pretty well. +1


cburch
Participant
#

or, just maybe, its all part of THE SAME PROBLEM. Poverty, lack of opportunity and violence go hand in hand. if we cyclists can find a positive way to engage kids and the community as a whole that helps alleviate at least a bit of the lack of opportunity i think it would go a long way toward not only making cyclists safer and seen as something other than a target for misplaced but justifiable rage, but would benefit the community as a whole. people have a habit of splitting up the northeast end of the city into isolated little cells “thats a good (rich,white,etc) area, but thats a bad (poor, black, etc) area” and when we do that the entire community loses out.

i for one would like to leverage freeride a bit and create summer bike workshop programs for the community. i haven’t thought too much about the specifics, but basically like the earn your bike program they already do, but out in the community, in the vast unused part of the home depot parking lot every saturday morning all summer or something. give kids something to do with a real tangible reward at the end while teaching tem a valuable skill along with the pride and self reliance that comes from learning a skill like that. similar to what the scraper bike guys have done in their towns.


rachel_ding
Participant
#

CBurch – That’s partly what the Mobile Bike Repair Project (@ Free Ride) does. We hire 3 teen interns for the summer (they get paid by an outside organization), teach them mechanics, and get them out in different neighborhoods to engage others and perform repairs.

We also have a Youth Earn-A-Bike program – I can hook you up with contacts for the Free Ride folks who organize this stuff if you have energy and want to get involved.

ALSO – and I don’t mean to go on a tangent and this could be it’s own thread – Free Ride has a great need for folks who like working with teens/younger kids to be “mentors,” like if the kid doesn’t have an adult family member/guardian who is willing to accompany them to the shop, the mentor will fulfill that role.

Sorry to hijack the thread, just wanted to directly respond to cburch’s idea.


BradQ
Participant
#

“Imagine how you’d feel if your friend was killed, and a few days later you see a memorial bicycle procession not for your friend, but for someone who (thankfully) wasn’t seriously injured. We all have an instinctual reflex to protect “our own” and mourn “our” losses but throw in power dynamics and inequality and it’s one of the sources of this alienation that, ultimately, hurts and endangers us all.”

It is absolutely ridiculous to give cyclists grief for caring about cyclist’s rights and safety.


cburch
Participant
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rachel, i thought you did have something like that but i wasnt sure. i guess what i’m saying is that we should try to figure out a way to make that program much more visible to the community. i think its a win-win kind of thing and possibly something we could talk to mr dowd about finding ways for the city or citiparks to help support the logistics and figure out a good way to market the program.

i think freeride is mostly unknown and therefore vastly under utilized by many of the communities it could most benefit.


Swalfoort
Participant
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I think this discussion needs to come to an end. Danny has pointed out a connotation in an earlier post that was a) presumably unintended by the original poster, b) misunderstood, or just missed by many readers or c) uncommented on for fear of inciting this sort of discussion. It was an unfortunate choice of words, and that has been duly noted.

As for the question of the right to grieve, or to express sympathy for the grief of others, who is to say that one person’s grief is greater or more warranted than the other? The memorial ride(s) held this weekend were to acknowledge all riders who have been killed or injured while on a bicycle. We were not implying in any way shape or form that the injuries to numerous cyclists — including serious injury and even death — was more or worse than the grief experienced by the family of the young person killed last week in East Liberty. We were sharing a common grief and a common concern about people who know, or hope to one day know.

It is my sincere hope that the young man killed in East Liberty last week had a strong family and community that will grieve his passing, and will provide love and support to the family members that he leaves behind. If I knew him, or his family members, or had even a passing acquaintance with him, I would probably have attended a memorial service for him as well. But to say that I don’t have the right to remember a gentleman who was killed through the reckless use of an auto (as opposed to the reckless use of a handgun) or that by sharing my concern about an individual who was injured through no action of his own is somehow disrespectful of this other individual is just absurd. That’s MY final post on the matter!


Lyle
Participant
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dannyp, I don’t know their race, you don’t know their race — hell, the entire concept of race is bizarre. Mongrel IS a generic term to refer to undesirable animals, that’s what it “really means”, and that’s what it has “really meant” for as long as English has been around. I don’t give a damn what the KKK has done to pervert my language, and I’m not about to give them the respect it would take to keep track of their favorite codewords so as to avoid using them.

People who behave like animals deserve to be labeled as animals, no apology from this quarter.

The KKK? They deserve to be laughed at, and not an ounce more.

And I really don’t know what people deserve who try to score “holier-than-thou” points over their neighbors on account of how finely tuned and sensitive are their choices in food (oh, you know, you really should be ashamed of yourself for eating bread because it’s got REAL animals in it. Yeast are people too!), clothing (frankly, I haven’t been able to find any that are made from all-natural fibers harvested only by fully self-actualized white Oregonians with decent health-care, so I have had to resort to just not wearing any at all), transportation (“I don’t own a car!” “Well, I never even rent one!”, “Yeah? Well, I wouldn’t even drive one if someone loaned it to me!.” “Oh yeah, well, I have never even RIDDEN in a car!” “Oh yeah? I have never even ridden in anything with four wheels!” “Oh yeah? Well, I’m a UNICYCLIST!”) religion, politics, and now even language. Maybe we should just all speak Esperanto. I’m pretty sure there aren’t any hate groups perverting it by introducing racial slurs.


mark
Participant
#

this is a really good example of when i duck out of conversations.

for the language nerds:

mongrel, definition

5. a. A person of low or indeterminate status. Freq. as a term of contempt or abuse, esp. in early use. Occas. in fig. context. derogatory

a1585 A. MONTGOMERIE Flyting with Polwart 772 Gleyd gangrell, auld mangrell! to the hangrell, and sa pyne. 1602 B. JONSON Poetaster III. iv. 2 Why how now, my good brace of Blood-hounds?..you Mungrelles, you Curres, you Bandogges, wee are Captaine Tucca, that talke to you, you inhumane Pilchers. a1627 T. MIDDLETON Chast Mayd in Cheape-side (1630) II. 22 How did the Mungrels heare my wife lyes in? 1647 G. WHARTON Ireland’s War in Wks. (1683) 227 To the intent that this barking mungrel may not delude the ignorant with his pedling trash. 1764 S. FOOTE Mayor of Garret I. 19 Is that your manners, you mongrel? 1840 R. H. DANA Two Years before Mast viii. 64 We now began to feel like sailors, which we never fully did when we were in the steerage. While there,..you are but a mongrel. 1857 A. DOUGLAS Ferryden 85 Ye haena the speerit o’ ony man, nor woman nether, ‘it ever I kent, an’ gif I was ye, I wid..an’ mak a grite mangerrel o’ myself. 1876 ‘G. ELIOT’ Daniel Deronda I. II. xvi. 333 You save an ugly mongrel from drowning and expect him to cut a fine figure. 1919 A. WRIGHT Game of Chance 20 A mongrel she’d known before me..put a tale over on her. 1929 D. H. LAWRENCE Pansies 126 England was always a country of men… Now it’s a country of frightened old mongrels Snapping out of fear. 1974 Meanjin Q. 280 A mate of mine was exterminated like that. In a cellar. Some mongrel dropped a niner through a trapdoor. 1997 Courier-Mail (Brisbane) 26 June 3/4 Mrs. Jackson’s grandson..was at the house yesterday fitting extra locks. ‘I’d like to get my hands on the mongrel,’ he said.


erok
Keymaster
#

ok.

let’s bring this conversation back to productivity now.

there’s a few points that i feel in need to make.

a) this is a public forum, a varied group of people on here, and in no way represents the position of BikePGH. Sure it’s on our website, and it’s the risk we chose to accept because we feel that there is more good than bad that can come out of this.

b) I personally didn’t know that mongrel was a racist term until danny pointed it out and i looked it up. i’m sure had the original poster known the connotation, he/she probably wouldn’t have used it.

c) with that said, although i’m an admin, it’s impossible to keep up on every post that happens on here.

while i do think that people should be called out on things that are said on here, which has happened many many times in the past, i don’t think that this term was used as danny implied. but i’m not going to speak for anyone, just as anything said on here shouldn’t be used to speak for BikePGH.


Nick D
Participant
#

@dannyp:

I (a long with most everyone else), had no clue that the word “mongrel” had any racial connotation to it. I’ve only ever heard it in reference to dogs.

I have had a few in-depth conversations (in person) with the poster who used the term, and I can almost positively assure you that is not what they meant.

To me, jumping in and label someone as a “racist” is of lower moral standing than to accidentally use a racially charged word in a non-racial context.

As for referring to people who senselessly assault other people as animals, I agree with Lyle.

On a more constructive note, Rachel, would FreeRide be interested in my scrap vinyl for decorating bikes? Although scraper bikes may not be of everyones taste, I think colorful self-adhesive weather-proof vinyl film could be a easy fun way to let kids individualize their bikes. Maybe set something up for bikefest?


Pierce
Participant
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Could I jump in and label people as specist? Humans ARE animals. And from what I know, there aren’t groups of non-human animals targeting cyclists on the ELBL, they’re humans. And in that context, “calling kids violent animals” seems accurate. I don’t understand how it is “shame on us,” for not knowing the origins of a particular derogatory term, and what percentage of the population knows the origins of the word? That being said, now that I am slightly more aware of it, I wouldn’t go out of my way to use the word.


mark
Participant
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first, it’s speciesist. second, wtf? third… seriously wtf?

edit: ok that edit you just did was a little more coherent but what does this have to do with speciesism. lets pretend i never wrote that and neither did you.


reddan
Keymaster
#

So, about that Take Back The Night ride…


Nick D
Participant
#

Yes, the ride.

I can’t go to the meeting tonight, but are we having a late night ride next week? Or is the take back the night ride, a ride to the meeting?

There seemed to be some confusion.

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