Mike Gallagher is a conservative radio talk show host. A few years ago he’d risen to as high as about 9th in the nation, but due to some rather idiotic comments sunk back to about 20th and now sits in the mid teens. Gallagher is a conservative and is actually anti-libertarian, something I’d guess his tea-party supporters aren’t aware of. He believes in a lot of government meddling in our lives, but from a conservative stance, not liberal.
A couple of years ago he went on a tirade against cyclists. Apparently he’d had to slow down for a brief period on some road because of a group of cyclists and he wasn’t happy about it. He apparently wanted to run them off the road. The next day, fellow Texan Lance Armstrong called in and gave Gallagher an earful resulting in numerous apologies from Gallagher.
Well, he’s at it again. On yesterday’s show (2011.04.13) he let loose with another immature and irresponsible tirade against cyclists.
My biggest concern with this is that some Mike Gallagher fan, driving down some road, is going to get irritated by a cyclist and think, Gallagher hates them, I hate them, so let’s do something about it. And then proceed to run them down. And unfortunately this happens.
In 2009, 630 cyclists were killed on U.S. roads, and 51,000 were injured. The average age of the dead was 41 and of the injured 31. Four of these deaths were known to be the result of driver rage against the cyclist. A number of others are suspected of being so. Were any of these influenced by Mike Gallagher?
Some of these deaths and injuries were the result of stupidity on the part of the cyclist, like riding on the left side of the street, and many were made worse by the cyclist not wearing a helmet. Unfortunately there are a lot of stupid cyclists that do stupid and irritating things. I get that. I’ve had to deal with them when I’m driving.
However, most cyclists ride safely and largely obey the law. And many of these are killed every year by either inattentive driving or a drivers inability to control their rage.
What really gets me about Gallagher’s tirades in particular though is the quite massive hypocrisy he exhibits. He is constantly talking on his show about all of the sorrow and anguish in his life; his wife dying of cancer, the physical and mental problems of his son, and a number of other things. He also talks about how he is a Christian and asks for prayer for he and his family and their numerous travails.
But what about the sorrow and travails in the lives of a family whose mother or father or son or daughter was run over and killed or seriously injured while they were out for a bike ride? In Gallagher’s world they are apparently not accorded the same level of sorrow that he thinks should be accorded to himself.
It’s time for Gallagher to grow up.