Bill the Bike Bully

Bill Lamb is always asking for feedback on his on-air editorials. So here’s some.

The other day Lamb was advocating that police start ticketing bicyclists, all because he happens to see some going the wrong way on one-way streets or blowing through stop signs or darting into traffic off sidewalks.

Now, this thinking goes against the general idea of making Louisville a bike-friendly city, but Lamb must have had a near-miss or something that kind of ticked him off about bikers. He claims only to want to do something about the bad bikers, that all of us law-abiding riders would have nothing to worry about. (Just kidding, I’m a dart-into-traffic champ).

Still, Lamb’s anti-biking rant doesn’t sit well with us. But what it really did was give viewers a reason to pop off with some vitriolic anti-bike hatred that shows they’re misinformed, unaware of the law and generally intolerant.

With this kind of mentality, it’s no wonder more people haven’t been killed by cars. The station aired six responses, all exhibiting a deep-seated hatred for bikes in traffic.

Here’s my favorite — “Roads were not designed for bicyclists, they should stay off.”

Then there’s — “Bikes should stay on the sidewalk where they belong (and where it’s illegal to ride)”

Another called wants to require special bike insurance for riders, and one was advocating a required license plate.

Lamb’s little rant elicited the kind of reaction that shows that city leaders — with all their talk about education about bike safety for motorists — have their work cut out for them with the big new safety campaign.

By the way, the Mayor’s Hike & Bike event, which is growing every year, is set for Labor Day morning. This time, we’re off from downtown to Iroquois Park.

And They May Even Talk About Sports

Hmmm. A new sports radio talk show focused on UK and U of L. Whatever will they come up to talk about?

It will be interesting to see if callers to these new shows actually want to talk about athletes and games, or the indiscretions of certain coaches.

This weekend, WGTK-970 AM will begin airing the latest attempt at attracting a significant radio audience aimed at a sports audience. It marks the debut of the “Sam Swope Weekend Sports Buzz,” according to producer Dugan Ryan.

Former U of L quarterback Dave Ragone and UK blogger Matt Jones will host the shows on the radio from 11 to Noon Saturday and 11-1 Sunday.  Ryan previously produced similar shows that aired on a now-defunct all sports talk radio show that aired weekdays, and TV programs that aired on the CW. Both programs were canceled after new ownership took over those media properties.

Ryan said the show will be “unfiltered,” i.e. it won’t be influenced by pressure from the athletic department officials at U of L or UK. He said they’ll focus on previews of upcoming games in college and pro football.

He said he wasn’t able to structure a deal to get the programming on during the week. You can stream the show from this link.

The show will originate from Furlongs restaurant at Hurstbourne and Shelbyville Roads.

WGTK-AM airs conservative talk during the week, featuring Bill Bennett, Hugh Hewitt and Dennis Miller.

A Metro Council Snoring Session

Tonight’s Metro Council meeting may end up among the shortest on record, with nothing of real significance coming up for a vote. There are two things worth noting.

The Council will address the idea of changing the name of 34th Street to honor the late Rev. Louis Coleman. But Judy Green’s resolution only asks the Metro Planning Commission to set up a public hearing and then make the request. So that one’s got a ways to go.

Tonight’s meeting will also feature a first reading of the Jim King/Kelly Downard ordinance tightening up reporting requirements for projects using public funds. Expect some amendments to be added to that one, which will go to the Government Accountability Committee. It could come up for a vote in a few weeks. It was written as a result of the whole Cordish loan controversy with Fourth Street Live’s use of funds for the Sports and Social Club.

Thank God We’re All a Little Safer Now

Let’s hear it for Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate’s decision to strike down a state law that said “dependence on Almighty God as being vital to the Commonwealth,” was required language in homeland security documents.

The language came from Kentucky’s Homeland Security office, which required crediting Almighty God in official reports. The department was required to post a plaque with the same language at its Emergency Operations Center in Frankfort.

Attorney general Jack Conway, who was asked by the Governor to defend the law in court, is thinking about whether or not to appeal the ruling. He shouldn’t.

It was a disappointment to our own state Rep. Tom Riner, a Louisville Baptist preacher who tried to sneak the language into a homeland security bill.

Last fall, when this issue was in the news, it put Kentucky jokes on the late-night talk show circuit. It also prompted a lawsuit from an atheist group.

One of that group’s reps get the best quote on the issue: “I think we can all feel a little safer now. The real threats to our society come from within, not without, and that includes building a theocracy here in Kentucky.”

Amen.

Pitino Fans, Go Ahead and Change the Station

No one in the local TV market led a newscast with Ted Kennedy or Jim King or the nutjob who shot somebody down at Waterfront Park. Sorry, Coach, you can’t tell people what to watch, and they wouldn’t change the station from this soap opera if you begged them to. Which, I guess, you did.

Wish This Guy Was Still Coach: Billy Gillispie finally got caught driving drunk and spent a night/early morning in the Franklin County Jail. If he were still the coach at UK, it might’ve come close to eclipsing the Pitino story in the national press. [Herald-Leader]

Yes, We Were Weanies: Every TV station and newspaper at the Pitino press conference yesterday sent reporters from both the sports and news departments to the Yum Center, and no one in the room (including U of L’s Kenny Klein, we think), knew what he was going to say. Most were shocked at what the Coach said. But why in the hell did not a single reporter in the room shout out a question as Rick walked away? Does anybody miss Hebert? Would the assemblage have been as quiet if it were Jerry Abramson?

How are We Ever Going to Focus On the Actual Games Again? Late yesterday, the Southeastern Conference relaxed its new social media policy, saying that it’s OK for fans to text scores and photos to friends. But they still would prohibit blogging about the action on the field. This, from MediaPost:

“As for fans or other ticket holders, the SEC now says that ‘personal messages and updates of scores or other brief descriptions’ of games are okay, but that ‘real-time descriptions’ aren’t. That line appears impossibly blurry to draw, much less enforce. But fans who cross it, even if inadvertently, appear to risk landing in court.” 

Somebody please buy me a ticket to the UK-U of L game so I can challenge this one.

The Big U of L Story You Missed: The University of Louisville appealed a court decision that it was wrong to suspend a student for posting information on her MySpace page. This is one U of L needs to give up on. Jake’s on it. [Page One]

And Here’s Billy’s Take: Which is what most people think — The Rick should listen to advice and keep his mouth shut.  [BillyReedSays]