July 1, 2010

Comments (3)

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Licensed to ride (& Stealin' Wheels)

I am an advocate for Bicycle and Pedestrian safety here in Bend, Oregon and I have been told that many cities have a license fee to help cover cost of bike lanes, plus it makes it easier for police to return stolen bikes to their rightful owner because the bike numbers are registered when the license is obtained. Maybe there is a better way to get bike lanes for our city that you might know of? If so please let me know.

Thank you very much.

Garry Zimmerman

Garry Zimmerman more than 4 years ago

bike licensing

While bike licensing would survive constitutional challenge (reasonable restrictions on constitutional rights being OK), it fails, as Kristen notes, any test for common sense.

I've written more on this at, but I think it's important to start calling proponents of licensing out on their real agenda (reducing viability of cycling) rather than just engaging their arguments as if they really believe licensing is good public policy.

Josh King more than 4 years ago

Licensing? No way.

The right to travel is a basic human right, a common law right, and a constitutional right (if you are in the US; it isn't mentioned specifically in the Federal Bill of Rights, but there is a substantial line of cases placing it among the 'unenumerated rights'; it is also mentioned in some of the state Bills of Rights.

Public safety requires that those operating motor vehicles be trained to do so properly, and licensing certifies that they have been so trained; the only thing that makes such licensing programs pass constitutional muster is the preservation of unlicensed modes of transport, such as walking and cycling. (Travel by animal power--horseback, etc.--is restricted by animal welfare laws.)

BAW more than 4 years ago