It does make me happy to see a lot of mobility groups activate themselves to champion causes. It makes me want to work harder and advocate moving people, more than cars, when I see more people understand the need for inclusive mobility.
Empowering people to move from origin to destination is a crucial element in any society and must be a priority in sustaining the economy and well-being of any individual, citizen or not. It is very sad when chaos ensues in the need for movement and people scramble to find alternative means of transport rather than rely on a cognizant public transport system.
The government has a role to play, governance after all, must include in it the well-being and safety of its citizenry. The right to live necessitates the ability to carry out tasks to sustain one’s ability to get to places you need to be. When society precludes the ability to move from point-to-point, because it does not have the right infrastructure or policies in place, it becomes disastrous and causes people to experience undue stress in trying just trying to get-by.
Advocacy groups, planners and mobility experts are speaking-out, they have been pushing for years and have often tried having their views have a wider acceptance rate. They have no compunction in taking a stand and apply tactical urbanism concepts when necessary – BUT have often found themselves disenfranchised and in need of more powerful allies in making policies a reality. Another waterloo that seems to manifest itself for advocacy groups is the fact that everyone wants to lead and have their own entity (and as much as I love a Wilberian model of the Holon Theory, this is a presupposition that conflict is not present between holons) legitimized, one cannot help but be reminded of the adage that there is no such thing as a free lunch. Media needs to be paid, it will cover objectively what it wants to and despite mobility groups worthy crusade, is not a partner without a proper comms strat and a budget to boot. Having the limelight because of a crisis or during, simple means that the media will showcase you but not sustain your battlecry. Every new movement that pops out wanting to carry the banner for commuters (everyone commutes after all!) is new entity to deal with, despite it being a symptom of a need for a healthy transport system, it is also a symptom of groups not coming together – even a refusal to work with each other.
We dream of a time that your commute does not impede mine, a time when we meet as allies on the road rather than strangers, and a time when the roads are friendlier to all walks of life. This vision is just a pipe dream if we don’t give advocacies the proper policies it needs to be sustained – the proper infrastructures and budgets pushed to allow inclusive mobility. We have to hold accountable not just the people in-charge but most importantly, we must hold ourselves accountable (the major stakeholders) for making this dream a reality.
Hoping that the many voices become a harmonious battlecry, unified in our complexities – the roads paving the way to meet the needs of the many.
RMOL: Pandemic Thoughts on Mobility – 2020
Reference on Holon: (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holon_(philosophy))