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December 31 , 2010

Bipedal, By Pedal

A History of Bicycle Activism in Portland, OR


It's the second issue of the Expozine Award Winning Bipedal, By Pedal. Last time around we got a social history and tactics lesson about the Critical Mass bicycle activist movement. For this issue BPBP editor Joe Biel collected legal documents pertaining to the Portland Police Department's "interest" in the local Critical Mass movement. Obtained by Freedom of Information Requests, Biel shows through once-secret police and court documents that Portland Critical Mass may not have simply died out, rather "From reading their internal files, the Portland Police department was highly wary of Critical Mass from day one and went as far as illegally spying on the group with their anti-communist "Red Squad" and forever cementing the meme that Critical Mass' goals were rioting, blocking traffic, and antagonism with the public." Portland is, of course, one of the best North American cities for cycling. This zine is a rally call for bike activists and is a companion piece to Biel's upcoming documentary,Aftermass: Bicycling In a Post Critical Mass Portland.

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