Archive for the ‘New York’ Category

Recent cycling links

1. Cycling in Ottawa contributor appears on CTV News to discuss bike safety in the wake of recent cycling deaths.

2. The New York Times’ ethics columnist goes for a bike ride around New York City and discusses cycling ethics.

3. The 2010 Bikeway Network Improvements pass Toronto City Council, but the high-profile plan for a segregated lane on University Avenue (which I was really looking forward to) fails due to an ostensible voting error by one councillor.

4. An NDP private member’s bill in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario would require drivers to leave 3 feet of space between their vehicles and cyclists; write your MPP.

Transportation Ethics

For fans of the New York Times column “The Ethicist“, Streetfilms has produced a video of an interview with its author, Randy Cohen, in which he makes a firm case for the immorality of urban cars and the ethical imperative to use alternative transportation.

I like how Cohen roots this criticism in a simple, traditional maxim: it does harm to others. In my philosophy studies, I’ve come across many radical approaches to environmental ethics (from deep ecology to eco-anarchism and beyond), and I’m somewhat sympathetic to them. However, I think the strongest case for environmental ethics lies in a simple understanding of ecological harm to others being just as much a violation of liberalism as other traditional harms.

While this approach is less novel and intellectually dazzling then formulating a whole new approach to the world, I think it’s much more likely to attract a consensus. I guess there’s a reason they call him The Ethicist.