Incitement to Murder – No Joke
Posted by chdot on January 2, 2008
Of course people who cycle get used to abuse. There’s always someone (often in a car) who seems upset that you are on the same bit of road.
There are highly paid newspaper columnists who think that a rant against ‘Lycra Louts’ will amuse their readers.
Then there’s Matthew Parris.
“A festive custom we could do worse than foster would be stringing piano wire across country lanes to decapitate cyclists.”
His piece in The Times (that was the first sentence) rants about people “chucking their empty cans of hi-energy drinks into hedgerows”. It’s far from clear if he knows that any were actually discarded by cyclists – chances are that some were thrown at riders.
Of course it’s easy to think ‘ha ha, very funny, what a prat’ and move on. The problem is that there are people who string wire to catch cyclists. No doubt they think it’s just a laugh and don’t really intend to cause serious injury. (There have been a few incidents on cyclepaths in Edinburgh). The perpetrators are unlikely to be Times readers.
No doubt they will grow out of it, perhaps helped by a visit from the Police. Whether Mr. Parris will grow out of his stupidity remains to be seen. A visit from the Police does seem quite likely.
This story is getting wide coverage on the internet and people are already reporting him to the Press Complaints Commission (on-line form), The Metropolitan Police (on-line reporting), and direct to the Editor of The Times (e-mail).