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Critical Mass Redux

Initially, I thought that both the driver and the cyclists who assaulted the driver after the driver ran over a cyclist should be charged and tried for the crimes they each committed. I even thought that the cyclists who attacked the car after the incident were really just shooting themselves in the foot, because without the damage to the car, the driver couldn’t have claimed that people were beating on his car before he drove over cyclists. However, based on the hugely biased police report that the Seattle Police Department appears to have no intention of correcting, I have grown pretty certain that even with no damage to his car, the driver would have avoided any charges.

The City of Seattle’s refusal to hold the driver accountable for his actions has, in my opinion, legitimized the vigilantism pursued by the cyclists. The City can’t expect its citizens to shun vigilante justice while the city itself shuns justice altogether. Maybe the cyclists who attacked the driver knew, from previous experience, that the city would not hold the driver accountable, so they knew they had to do it themselves. Or maybe the cyclists were just thugs looking for a fight. Regardless, in my mind, the cyclist’s actions have been justified by a government unable or unwilling to perform its most basic duty.

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