The Ranty Highwayman)
Change Is Difficult
The Ranty Highwayman
SUNDAY, 9 OCTOBER 2016
PEOPLE DON’T LIKE CHANGE AND WE MUST BE SENSITIVE TO THE FACT. IT MIGHT BE DIFFICULT TO PUT YOURSELF IN SOMEONE ELSE’S SHOES, BUT DISMISSAL WITHOUT THOUGHT ISN’T HELPFUL IN THE LONG RUN.
I’m not suggesting that we need to agree with people we don’t agree with (if that makes sense) or indeed spend hours arguing with them; I’m talking about acknowledgement and understanding, even if it goes against the grain (and it often does with me, mightily). I’m not talking about compromise either and I’m definitely not talking about stopping challenging people when they are being ridiculous. I’m just suggesting they we throw some understanding into the mix and realise that people dislike and even fear change when it goes against their long-held beliefs or stated position.
The opposition to cycling hasn’t done much for walking either. Many opposing cycling say that the provision of cycling infrastructure is bad for people walking when the truth is that space needs to be given over to both modes. While there are generally footways on urban streets, they are often commandeered for parking, traffic signs (mainly *motor traffic* signs) or the other “stuff” we place on them which give no advantage to people walking.
So as we move forward into uncertain times, I wonder if the concept of people driving cars being allowed to drive through parks will move from the normal to the irrational. Whether there can be agreement between walking advocates and cycling advocates that they’re actually active travel advocates and whether the current “share the road” nonsense is called out for the nonsense it is.