Will you have to pay money to ride your bicycle in New York state? If a Democrat from Queens, N.Y., has his way you will. Michael Dendekker suggested a bill for the New York State Assembly to consider having all bicycles licensed, inspected and insured. You would have to pay $25 for an initial licensing fee and then $5 every year after just to ride your bike! In addition to this, you would have to have it inspected and insured every year. No one has talked about how much extra that would cost. I think this is a bad idea.
Many people get exercise riding their bicycles. If they don’t or can’t pay, they may become out of shape or overweight because they wouldn’t be able to ride. This would impact kids the most. More children ride bikes than adults. Biking is good for children because it is a form of exercise. It helps them stay healthy and active. Adults could be hurt, too. Some adults may have disabilities and the only exercise they might be able to do is riding bikes. Making them go through all this with their bikes so they could get exercise is unfair to them. Bikes are not only good for exercise, they benefit other things, too.
Riding bikes instead of driving cars is good for the environment. If people don’t pay and therefore can’t ride, they may drive cars more often. If this occurs, it may result in more pollution in the air. This would add more exhaust from cars to the air and further add to our air quality problems. We have enough pollution already. We should do everything we can to help reduce it.
Biking is a family activity. With this bill, parents may be paying a lot of money just for their children to be able to ride and play. Some families may not be able to have bikes and not be able to bike together. This limits the things people can do together as a family.
Elizabeth Hanchar is a fifth-grader at The Academy of the Holy Names