Jess Fox posts a photo of the flaming white "ghost bicycle" in Porter Square, a memorial to Joe Lavins, hit and killed by an 18-wheeler as he rode to work in 2016.
this is a problem
This is disgraceful and a crime.
Nearly as bad as idiots knocking over headstones. I have no words....
I would not rule out the possibility that people don't know what ghost bikes are. They're a relatively new tradition. But still, even if the person thought it was just some weird abandoned bike, setting it on fire is a rather aggressively antisocial action to take.
other ghost bikes have been damaged, but this is targeted against something that is not provocative on its own.
Do these ghost bikes have signs on them saying what they're about?
Not any near me to go look at the moment.
If they don't, there's no reason for a passerby to think it's anything other than junk or street art/community kitsch - like the cows and pianos.
I know that this one did (at some point) have a sign identifying the victim in question.
to set "junk or street art/community kitsch - like the cows and pianos" on fire? I hope you don't live near me.
to berate people for saying things they didn't say.
No, it's not okay, asshole, and I didn't say it was.
I was replying to the notion of people thinking that someone is particularly hostile to either memorial displays or traffic safety spot-hilighting, if there's no reason for anyone not in the know to recognize it as such.
It could just be some generally anti-social and/or disturbed person who is destructive, but has no specific grudge.
I haven't seen any street art set on fire. tagged maybe.
... if this was some message aimed at cyclists or a random act of vandalism.
Apparently the flowers in the basket were set fire. Occasionally people leave empty soda bottles, candy wrappers and once even bagged dog poop in my bike basket. Never thought much of it. But arson is something else.
Not many know what ghost bikes are so in the end this may help spread awareness of how little is done to protect pedestrians and cyclists from bad drivers and the judicial policies, infrastructure and general apathy that enable them.
I'd prefer if someone destroyed the awful road design that makes Porter so dangerous. It was bad, and the redesign about 10 years ago made it worse, with too many narrow swerving lanes that can't be followed, where a single lane would be better. The quick fixes after this tragic death didn't help.
That bike's been getting disassembled for a while now. It's been looking sad. This seems like a pretty terrible culmination of that. :(
The issue with asking that the ghost bikes be labeled is that they are an artistic expression.
I am an old guy who loves to bike in the city. The ghost bikes are compelling in a way that is difficult for me to describe, which is kind of the *point* of artistic expression, I suspect they are very effective at reaching their target audience and do so best without labels.
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