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Tuesday July 16th 2019

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That's what she said

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City to Drop “Bicycle Owner,” Will Use “Bicycle Guardian” Instead


Bicycle Guardian Pee Wee Herman

This post originally appeared in the Blue Line’s 2012 April Fool’s issue.

Bicycle rights activists are applauding the Boulder City Council’s approval last night of an ordinance changing the term “bicycle owner” in the city’s code to “bicycle guardian.”

Kimberley Swenk, a spokesperson for the bicycle-rights group Bikes Care!, spoke passionately in favor of the measure.  “Bicycles aren’t belongings.  They’re not just a thing, like a TV or a toaster.  They’re intelligent, caring, feeling beings.”

Swenk is a guardian for three bicycles: “Jack,” a four-year-old Fuji; “Miss Pig,” a 12-year-old Giant; and “Buster,” a 16-year-old Schwinn/Miyata mix.  “I love them all, but Buster is my baby,” Swenk said.  “He’d been abused, and I found him abandoned on the street.  He needs extra love, but he gives it all back.”

Tim Atanaster, another proponent of the change, called it a symbolic but important move.  “Maybe it will get people to think a little more about how they treat bicycles.  You can still walk around town and see bikes chained to trees out in people’s yards.  It’s terrible.”

Councilman George Karakehian cast the only dissenting vote on the wording change.  “I sympathize, but is this really how the council should be spending its energy?” asked Karakehian.  “I consider the rights of skis a more pressing issue.”

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