I have been fighting the semantics battle for a while. When people refer to people who ride bikes as “bikers” or “those cyclists” it is a way to compartmentalize and diminish. We are not bikers, bicyclists or cyclists. We are people who ride bicycles. We are not motorists; we are people who drive cars.
This reminds me of one of my favorite videos taken by people riding bicycles. I wish I could find the clip but it goes something like this:
Guy riding along using his right to the full lane on a four lane road. A woman in a car pulls up in the lane next to him and screams, “You are not a car. You need to move over.” He yells back “You are not a car either, you are a human being.”
When a person driving a car hits a person riding a bicycle, it is not an accident. It is a collision.
From Bike Law after one of their own was heinously hit last week:
“We have long argued that bicycle crashes are not ‘accidents.’ North Carolina attorney Ann Groninger (who proudly represents [an experienced cyclist struck while riding with friends who works with Bike Law]) has made the point on these pages. Lawyers in our Network have represented injured cyclists in thousands of cases. We know, first hand, that our clients are rarely injured “accidentally.” On the contrary, in the overwhelming number of occurrences, a driver made a choice (or failed to make a choice), and that choice caused injuries, often life-changing, sometimes fatal.”