Emer's right about cyclists
Sir -- Emer O'Kelly's views (Sunday Independent, October 17) on cyclists are spot on. I read her first article some weeks ago and felt that what she had written was long overdue and hoped this might ignite a debate.
To my chagrin, I read two letters the following week, each critical and negative. The rarely challenged cyclists striking back. How dare a journalist write honestly on this subject!
Emer, I witness what you described each day of the working week. I have been a pedestrian in Dublin city centre since the early Eighties. Foul-mouthed, law-flouting cyclists are an embedded feature of urban 'culture', anonymous guerrillas whom I have yet to see being cautioned by a garda.
I doubt pedestrians can ever again reclaim footpaths or even negotiate crossing unimpeded at pedestrian lights.
The Green Party is skewed in complete support of cyclists. It matters not one whit that they ignore red traffic lights, fingers in a v-sign, with no tax and no means of identification should they leave an injury in their wake. These details are ignored.
I am writing to show my solidarity. Thank you, Emer.
Maynooth, Co Kildare
How about a bicycle test?
Sir -- In response to Emer O'Kelly's open letter to John Gormley regarding cyclists, I don't think that he can be held accountable for the bad behaviour and language of some of them. There will always be a few individuals who think that everyone else should get out of their way, regardless of whether they are actually breaking the law or not (that applies to motorists and pedestrians, too).
The problem is the lack of training. You need to pass a test to drive a car. There is no such test to ride a bicycle. Not all cyclists are familiar with the rules of the road, especially if they have never taken a driving test. Perhaps some kind of compulsory training should be introduced? After all, as Emer O'Kelly experienced, bicycles can cause injury, too.
Tuamgraney, Co Clare