Bicycle Culture Institute stands in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.
Our reason for being has always been as much about equality and the lifting up of under served individuals and communities as it has been about the joy of riding bikes and having fun.
The bicycle advocacy ecosystem has imploded in the last several years as we have struggled with two immovable challenges: financial stability and building diverse, unified coalitions of people. Professional advocates and city officials have wondered why communities of color push back against bike lanes and why bike orgs fail to grow membership.
Like the democratic party, which has failed the modern progressive movement, we have failed to do the hard look inward to address systemic racism or recognize its presence. Nonprofits have failed, businesses and brands have failed or made token strides towards inclusion. The cause might be selfishness, the desire to hold on to power or the way that things have always been, or it may be from a simple lack of awareness. And what affects one of us, affects us all. We now have the stage to educate the unaware and begin to wrest the power from those that would put priority in keeping racist and misogynistic power structures comfortably in place.
Bicycles have always been revolutionary.
We cannot continue. We must not ‘go back to normal.’ All of us have a golden opportunity and time to radically consider new ways of looking at what is really important. BCI was formed to connect different kinds of people to each other and to bicycles. But we can’t do that by stumbling along as we have been. Our events are more diverse than the usual bike party, but we’ve stopped being able to bring in new people. The struggle to find enough dollars has shifted our time and attention to things that make money, not the things that will have the most impact. That is unacceptable.
When BCI was formed in 2013, the intention was to create a bicycle resource library for anyone to have access to: workshops, ideas, resources. As of June 2020, we will cease general operations and function only as an online resource for organizers and reference service to black experts and representatives in cycling for media or industry inquiries.
A big heartfelt thank you to everyone over the years who has volunteered, donated, partied and biked with us over the years through different projects: LA Bike Trains, R5Y7: a Bike Gallery, The LA Bicycle Festival, Filmed By Bike: LA, The Girls Program and lots others.
Please use the contact page to make a referral request, comment or share something nice. We love you. Stay strong and don’t forget to be kind.