Senator Chuck Schumer has bad cycling etiquette

chuck schumer bike
Keep that phone in your pocket, senator. via Paul Steely White

Senator Chuck Schumer loves riding his bike, and he really opened up about it to the Daily News this weekend, telling the paper it’s a good way for him to clear his mind and see the city from  the ground floor. Good for you, Senator Schumer! Riding a bike is healthy and relaxing, at least when you aren’t dodging vans speeding through red lights as if they don’t exist. Still, despite a video that features him saying he obeys every traffic law, New York’s senior senator commits one glaring jerk move during the profile, and it seems like it’s something he does all the time:

“As he biked through Brooklyn with a Daily News reporter last week, Schumer answered his flip phone without slowing his roll. ‘What’s up? I’m on the bike!’ he said, making his way along Bedford Ave. in Bedford-Stuyvesant.”

Senator, it’s not alright to talk on your phone while you ride your bike.

While I appreciate your commitment to flip phones, and again, to cycling, it’s a miracle that you haven’t hurt yourself or someone else while taking the time to answer your phone while riding your bike, especially on a busy strip like Bedford Avenue. It’s not even the personal safety aspect of talking on the phone when you ride that bothers me, if you’re gonna do a dumb thing and kill yourself, that’s on you. Answering your phone means taking a hand off your handlebars and having only one brake to stop with, making it harder to slow down in the case of a pedestrian stepping out into the street or not crashing into the back of another cyclist stopped at a red light.

It’s neglectful and selfish, and betrays an attitude of thinking you’re the only one on the road. Like you, I ride Bedford Avenue frequently. It’s insane to think you can ride that block safely without paying complete attention to what you’re doing. You might think you’re less of a threat to pedestrians than “macho bikers” in spandex, but at least those guys are paying attention to their surroundings. If your phone rings, and you have to answer it (which we guess you do because you’re a senator), pull over, tell whoever to fuck off because you’re on your bike and then go about your day. See you out there (I’ll be the one telling you to get off the fucking phone)!

Follow Dave at @DaveCoIon for more bike etiquette thoughts

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