Monday, July 4, 2016

Are Bicycle Helmets Holding Us Back? A Great Article

This recent article from Momentum Magazine is written by a U.S. public official who dared to notice helmet-free cyclists in Europe, then ride without one when he returned. For that simple, personal choice he was chastised and reprimanded. Too bad he didn't have one of these buttons:

He was also inspired to research and write a great article about the bicycle helmet problem in North American. Please take the time to read it, and enjoy.

Are Bicycle Helmets Holding Us Back?

Written by: Shaun Lopez-Murphy

Three years ago when I was the Bicycle Coordinator in Minneapolis, MN, I became involved in a controversy over a bicycle helmet – or lack thereof. After a trip to Europe, where I had ridden with the non-helmeted masses in three of the safest bicycling nations on Earth – Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands – I had declined to top my noggin.

I didn’t realize it but I had become one of the first U.S. public officials to question bicycle helmets openly, telling the local newspaper in an interview, “I just want [bicycling] to be seen as something that a normal person can do … you don’t need special gear. You just get on a bike and you just go.”

Locals immediately criticized me. The pro-helmet cry was passionate and full of concern over traumatic brain injuries, which is not unusual when bicycle helmet policy is debated. Soon after, I was told to start wearing head protection while bicycling on the job.

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