It has been a close race lately in the “we can out-dumb you” match between Missouri and Kansas lawmakers. Legislators on both sides of the state line have been trying to out maneuver each-other in this escalating battle of dim-wits.

Jay Houghton Missouri Cycling Flag BillIn another staggering display of myopic leadership, Missouri’s 43rd District Representative, Jay Houghton, has upped the ante with his attempt to take the lead in this horse race.

His bill would require a florescent orange flag, flown at a height of at least 15 feet above the roadway, for all cyclists riding on a lettered county road.

As many, more intellectually minded and thoughtful people have pointed out, 15 feet is more than many bridge clearances, parking garage entrances, and other low clearance obstacles. This would also create a significant hazard near above ground utilities. Other dangers such as the extreme sway you would get from a flag suspended from a 15 ft pole on a bike would create very dangerous situations for other riders, drivers, and anyone else in the vicinity.

Anybody behind the wheel of a car that is so inattentive that they can’t see a cyclist on the roadway is probably not observant enough to see the little orange flag 15 ft above the road surface. It would probably be far safer to simply start removing drivers from the road who can’t seem to pay attention to the task of driving and responsibly operate their vehicle.

Jay Houghton Missouri Cycling Flag BillWe however, do not want to offer complaints without offering solutions. So, in an effort to reach out to Hughton we would like to submit our design proposal for consideration as the official flag of House Bill No. 2046.

Houghton has co-sponsored anti-cycling legislation in the past. Obviously, the real idea behind this is to simply make it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to ride a bike. Short-sighted bills like this come up way too often and highlight the ignorance and bigotry of those who push such agendas.

We encourage an active an involved citizenry when it comes to the political process and encourage cyclists from Missouri and the rest of the region to let Representative Houghton know your thoughts about this bill. You can reach Hughton through the following channels:

Legislative Assistant: Jessica Kent
Phone: 573-751-3649

MO House of Representatives
201 West Capitol Avenue
Room 412-B
Jefferson City MO 65101