Monday, January 19, 2009

Anthony Siracusa: A Dream For 2009

Anthony Siracusa is the guiding force behind Revolutions Community Bicycle Shop:

My dream is a city with flocks of bicycle commuters riding to work each morning.

I dream of schoolchildren riding with their parents in to school, bundling up against the chilly winter temperatures and enjoying the pleasant breeze across their noses in the fall and spring.

My dream includes bicycles lanes on Cooper St., Central Avenue, Third Street and Riverside Drive.

It is a dream where Memphians see bicycles not simply as a tool for the poor and disfranchised but as a means to save money and maintain a healthy way of life. It is a dream where all the citizens of our city see the simplicity of a bicycle as a way to transform crime, poverty and depression. Memphians will lobby the city council for increased spending on safe routes to school, free blinky lights for all Memphians to protect them during night rides, and demand an interconnected system of trails, greenways and bikepaths that allow all people to safely travel by bicycle to any destination in the Metropolitan area.

This dream is not so far-fetched -- Memphis can follow the lead of cities in our own state: Chattanooga, Knoxville and Nashville.

My dream for Memphis is a city that is livable -- with clean air, healthy bodies, interconnected neighborhoods free from the vestiges of segregation and Jim Crow, a city that prides itself on providing for its citizens rather than locking them up, a city that can boast thousands of bicycles commuters and dozens of bicycle shops all working to nurture a new way of life in our city.

My dream is shared by many, actualized by some, and in truth planted deep in the hearts of all. My dream goes on two wheels. My dream is that someday, you can too.

4 comments:

Aaron said...

Wonderful!

You have a big cyclist fan
here. Keep pedaling the dream!u

Anonymous said...

That's why they call them dreams, they don't have to be based in reality.
That sure was a lot about you selling a lot of bikes.
That's alright, it is a good dream no matter where the bikes come from.

A Taco said...

And the best part, my anonymous friend, is that we do not actually sell bikes at our shop! That is why we are a community bike shop--people earn their bikes!

Still and all, Dr. King had a dream once too.

Abigail said...

I just moved here from a city exactly like the one you described. Where parents do indeed bike their bundled-up kids to school in the morning before continuing on to work (schools even have bike "parking lots" for all the kids bikes), and biking is the preferred commute of high and low. The streets have bike lanes, bridges have special bike sections, there are even separate streets set aside just for bikes so you can get anywhere in the city without hardly seeing a car (except the parked ones). There are more bike shops, benefits, themed rides, free events and safety handouts than you can shake a stick at. It's Portland, OR. I'm still adjusting to Memphis, but hopeful so far.