Last night’s Wiggle Stop-In brought well over a hundred cyclists out in protest to the highly-trafficked bike route known as The Wiggle. The event, planned by a community organization called The Wigg Party, was an attempt to demonstrate the effect on traffic of every cyclist coming to a full and complete stop at each stop sign along The Wiggle.
The protest was in response to a recently announced plan by SFPD Park Station Captain John Sanford to target cyclists and pedestrians for ticketing in popular areas like the Panhandle and The Wiggle. Captain Sanford has been accused of intentionally misconstruing guidelines originally designed to protect pedestrians and bikers in order to crackdown on cyclists who fail to follow the letter of the law when stopping at intersections.
“We are demonstrating the absurdity of the stop sign law as applied to bicyclists. Our goal is to get the Idaho Stop adopted as law in San Francisco.”
The Idaho Stop refers to the Idaho law which allows cyclists to treat stop signs as yield signs, and red lights as stop signs.
And in what will come as a surprise to no one, some motorists became upset when confronted with cyclists stopping fully at every stop sign. Several drivers, like the taxi pictured below, whipped around the queued bikers and gunned it the wrong way to escape the scourge of law-abiding cyclists.
That the taxi almost hit an oncoming car didn’t appear to faze the driver, who then proceeded erratically through the intersection.
With the stated goal of gathering fifty to one hundred cyclists well surpassed, last night’s turnout exceeded organizers’ expectations. What remains to be seen is what effect, if any, the protest will have on Captain Sanford. With District 5 Supervisor London Breed coming out in favor of the Idaho Stop, Sanford has some political cover should he decide to back away from his anti-cyclist/anti-pedestrian stance. Then again, maybe he’ll just write the Supervisor a ticket the next time he sees her rolling a stop.