Friday, November 13, 2015

Congressman Blumenaber's response to Post op-ed

Congressman Earl Blumenauer recently responded to a Washington Post op-ed Our political divide on transportation in which the author of the op-ed invents what he calls the "congestion lobby" which he claims is fighting road expansion as part of a campaign of "social engineering: getting people out of their soulless single-family suburban homes and into vibrant multiethnic communities; having them ditch their environment-destroying SUVs in favor of sustainable light rail; and supporting the urban disadvantaged instead of a privileged suburban class."

What the author neglects to mention is that we in the US. have been socially engineered since the 50's with massive publicly subsidized highway and road construction, home-loan guarantees, and the mortgage interest deduction that facilitated suburban sprawl.  With almost no other options to safely walk, bike, or take transit, most people have no other choice than to drive, even for short trips.

Here is Congressman Blumenauer's response:
In his Nov. 6 Washington Forum commentary, “Our political divide on transportation,” Robert D. Atkinson ignored the biggest trend in American transportation: a desire for options. There is no pro-car vs. anti-car battle being waged through social engineering. Instead, there is a national movement for transportation choice led by millennials with no addiction to car use and graying baby boomers who are recovering from theirs.

Younger Americans don’t just drive less — many choose not to have driver’s licenses. They would rather spend their time and money on technology and experiences. They use cars without being tethered to them. Increasingly, many prefer biking, taxis and ride-hailing services and mass transit. Their baby-boomer parents and grandparents are finding the car-dominated lifestyle in which they grew up to be increasingly unsatisfying. They, too, are moving to urban neighborhoods and reducing their automobile use.

Clearly, not everyone has abandoned motor vehicles. Some prefer to drive everywhere and don’t mind the time and expense. Because so many communities surrendered to the car long ago, too many Americans have no real choice. Those who do have choices, young and old, are opting for the balanced transportation systems of livable communities that look nothing like Mr. Atkinson’s view from the 1970s.

Earl Blumenauer, Washington

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Contact FABB via email:

Subscribe to the
FABB e-newsletter

Subscribe to posts:
[Atom 1.0] or [RSS 2.0]

  Bike to Work Day 2015 at Wiehle Station

  Transportation choices

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?