Black People Must Be Really Bad Bicycle Riders

The disproportionate targeting of African Americans by police has been a controversial issue for decades.

While primarily relegated to the black community itself, the issue has been projected into the mainstream consciousness over the last year as more and more questionable police killings gain national attention.

Now, I am certainly no ‘social-justice crusader’ and obviously there are those that wish to utilize race for political purposes.

Like most legitimate movements of public outcry, elements seeking to further their own agenda soon take hold. Take the Tea Party Movement for instance, or Occupy Wall Street.

In what was originally a grass roots resistance against tax increases, bailouts, and Obamacare, the Tea Party movement was quickly subdued by social conservatives like Sarah Palin and Ted Cruz. Attend most any Tea Party event today and you are likely to hear platitudes about the evils of immigration or abortion.

In the case of Occupy Wall Street, what initially was an organized attempt to condemn Cronyism and the relationship between Wall Street and Big Government soon devolved into a radical egalitarian agenda advocating massive wealth redistribution from the dreaded 1 percent as its final goal.

Likewise, the anti-police protests in Ferguson, Missouri and elsewhere around the country have coalesced in much the same way – that is to say out of a perceived and legitimate injustice – and is likewise being undermined in such a manner as to prevent any real reform.

Anyone that encounters a police officer is at possible risk, no matter what color they are. Statistics like those recently released by the Tampa Bay Times, however, undoubtedly expose the reality of targeted police actions against minorities.

According to the investigation, Tampa police have written 2,504 tickets for bicycle violations over the past three years. Even though blacks make up only about a quarter of the city’s population, they are receiving eight out of every 10 tickets – 81 percent.

Something might be said about the higher likelihood of blacks to use bicycles as their primary means of conveyance in the city, but analyzing the data, the Times concludes that, “Tampa police are targeting poor, black neighborhoods with obscure subsections of a Florida statute that outlaws things most people have tried on a bike, like riding with no light or carrying a friend on the handlebars.”

These violations are used as an excuse to stop and question bicyclists, with a particular focus on minority neighborhoods, the Times says.

Police claim the bike stops are part of a ‘crime prevention’ strategy and say they encourage bike stops as a means to reduce more serious crimes. The vast majority of tickets however, did not include arrests. And when they did, it was usually for a small amount of drugs or a misdemeanor.

The Times points out that Tampa officers get yearly “productivity reports,” calculating, in part, how many tickets they give. One personnel file detailed a “red grid patrol” in which officers were encouraged to “engage and identify offenders through street checks, bike stops, and traffic stops.”

In another file, a supervisor told a new officer he should learn rarely used traffic statutes. The fact that he wasn’t familiar with them was noted as a “significant weakness” in his 2012 performance review. The next year, the new officer impressed his bosses with his “dramatic increase” in “self-initiated activity.”

The police can hide behind public safety all they want, but we all know revenue generation is the name of the game. More than 50 percent of Americans’ earnings are gobbled up in federal, state, and local taxes.

As if that’s not enough, like vultures, the agents of the state, county, and city are sent out to embezzle and extort even more from us for any one of millions of ridiculous laws and violations that in most cases simply contradict the common sense of a rational mind.

Americans commit three or more felonies every day, without even knowing it, just going about our daily business. Obviously, if caught by any number of men in costumes calling themselves ‘officials’, we will be kidnapped and thrown into a cage.

This of course goes on while the real criminals, in many cases the costumed men themselves, commit horrendous atrocities daily against their fellow countrymen as they provide protection to the very people at odds most with the law.

George Bush and Barack Obama can melt faces off children with personally sanctioned drone strikes, and Wall-Street Bankers like Jon Corzine can steal Millions, but if you ride your bicycle without holding onto the handle bars, you will be pulled over, treated like a criminal, embarrassed in your community, have your property ransacked, and written a ticket for in some cases upwards of a weeks pay.

If police officers really cared about upholding the law more than preserving their own fiefdoms, they would arrest politicians.

Riding a bike without holding the handlebars was just recently legalized in Tampa. Last year however, Tampa police wrote at least four tickets for the violation.

The United States Justice Department has launched a federal probe into the departments citation practices.

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Asa J

works primarily as an independent advertising consultant employing grass roots strategies to raise awareness about businesses in their local communities. He has an Associates of Arts Degree and is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Communications/Advertising Degree at Appalachian State University. He is Founder of Police State Daily. His work has been referenced in places like The Washington Post and Esquire Magazine.
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  • JC

    Did you ever think the ethnic population in the area is primarily Blacks, just like others are primarily Hispanic, So when there are bicyclist in one of those areas, there just maybe a larger number of an ethnic group on bikes. This is just another ploy to incorporate racism when there isn’t any.

    The author said, “The police can hide behind public safety all they want, but we all know revenue generation is the name of the game”. Prove it. If you break the law and get a ticket. The monetary punishments are set by the law. Not by racism.

  • Common Sense

    Got it, write more tickets to whites. No problem.

    “…Even though 2013 was one of the department’s highest ticketing years,
    bike crashes still rose the following year by 20 percent. Bike thefts,
    too, climbed 15 percent…..” Clearly more enforcement and bike registration is needed.

    Or its this, most black don’t have a license or a car, so they ride bikes. Even the incidents reported show that a small infraction can and do lead to warrant, weapon and drug arrests.

    Still trying to add up my three felonies. Have yet to reach one yet.

  • keepitreal

    “Even though blacks make up only about a quarter of the city’s population, they are receiving eight out of every 10 tickets – 81 percent.” Your reasoning just doesn’t make any sense, slaps. Btu, you’re a proven fraud and liar, anyway, so I guess it doesn’t matter.

  • keepitreal

    “obscure subsections of a Florida statute that outlaws things most people have tried on a bike, like riding with no light or carrying a friend on the handlebars”

    WRONG. Bikes on the road are subject to the same laws as cars. So driving at night without a headlight is not an “obscure subsection”.

  • DeekS

    uh, yes that point was explicitly made in the article: “Something might be said about the higher likelihood of blacks to use
    bicycles as their primary means of conveyance in the city, but analyzing
    the data, the Times concludes that, “Tampa police are targeting poor,
    black neighborhoods with obscure subsections of a Florida statute that
    outlaws things most people have tried on a bike, like riding with no
    light or carrying a friend on the handlebars.”

  • CopsKill

    But the MRC are out there trying to collect as much as they can while REAL crimes are being committed that have real victims.

  • CopsKill

    All 80% of any police force is out there generating revenue. They aren’t out there for any other reason but to collect revenue until the time they are truly need for a REAL problem.

    MRC…….(Militarized Revenue Collectors)……usually create more problems than they help. Notice how violence don’t start a lot of times until after the MRC show up. I would guess a large percentage of violence is started by the MRC by just making up reasons to use violence. Like the guy that died after his spinal cord was severed. He looked at the bike cops and then ran. Now he’s dead for looking at the MRC.

    Any reason they can think of or use to abuse the public. Unnecessary to deadly force used on those that might have never even been ticketed before.

    Never trust police. Badges don’t grant extra rights.

  • CopsKill

    They stop bike riders and ask for their papers….those MRC should have SS on their collars. Those people stopped for no reason should have just refused to answer questions.

    Never trust police.

  • RAD

    I hate that term: generating revenue(at least when used referring to cops). It makes it seem like they’re actually out there doing something productive. Usually we don’t call stealing “generating revenue”.

  • ymygody

    I didn’t know you wanted to be in ISIS. you’re a ISIS supporter and terrorist. have you seen all the people they been arresting for attempting to get into ISIS. I believe I’m going to have to the authorities to a possible terrorist connected to ISIS. you should be ashamed of yourself TERRORIST. I suggest you prepare for legal action.

  • CopsKill

    Unfortunately, they are out there doing something. It’s just not the something we as the public like very much. There’s never a cop around when they’re needed, but they always seem to be around when and where there is money to be made.

  • t

    They should probably be shooting more white people while they’re at it.

  • t

    Tampa’s about 26% black. 80% of the tickets? That’s clearly targeted.

  • Aaron Marshall

    I can testify to this. This may not be everywhere, but in my town, I constantly see black people riding their bikes on the wrong side of the road. You ride with traffic and walk against it. I was taught this when I was 8 yrs old (by my parents, not a government dog). So instead of slowing down and choosing an appropriate time to pass a bicyclist, I have to swerve into oncoming traffic or come to a complete stop to avoid hitting a pedestrian. It is infuriating. It is a common enough occurrence to get me to post about it.

    Bring on the comments about how I am a racist for pointing out the truth.

  • Aaron Marshall

    I’ll say this, If it comes down to hitting some dumbass on a bike and a head on collision totaling 90mph, I’m hitting the bike, no question. It is your INDIVIDUAL responsibility to know the rules of the road and look out for your own safety. Just don’t come crying with a lawsuit when you get splattered all over the road.

  • Common Sense

    By numbers, more whites almost 2-1 are shot and killed by the police than blacks. Its only when you account for the national ratio in demographics does it make headlines.

  • Common Sense

    Adjusted to take into account the racial breakdown of the U.S.
    population, he said black men are 3.5 times more likely to be killed by
    police than white men. But also adjusted to take into account the racial
    breakdown in violent crime, the data actually show that police are less
    likely to kill black suspects than white ones.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/apr/21/police-kill-more-whites-than-blacks-but-minority-d/#ixzz3YGlx4yv2

  • Gratis Banks

    Government is so incompetent that they really don’t generate revenue. American cops have been able to vote themselves very high wages, benefits, and pensions that bring the tab per officer in the six figures. Cops also are the center lawsuits. Most big cities pay tens of millions of dollars with some cities like New York paying $200,000,0000.00 per year in lawsuits. They would collect far more revenue not trying the revenue generation in the first place..

  • Gratis Banks

    I hate the term revenue when talking about the state as well because it isn’t revenue to steal something.

  • Gratis Banks

    You have to be a dumbass to think that registering a bike makes it less likely to be stolen!!!

  • CopsKill

    You really are a fucking asshole !!!

    t = fail