Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Local Writer Admits Assaulting Cyclist & Premeditates Further Attacks, Lying In Court

Josh Board, a writer for the weekly San Diego Reader, admitted on his blog that he assaulted a cyclist during the latest Critical Mass ride. According to Board's blog, the writer threw a piece of gum at one CM rider and then picked up a rock off the ground and struck a random cyclist in the head with it.

In the comment section of the blog entry, Board premeditates further attacks on the CM riders. Board encourages readers to organize in South Park (an area in center-city San Diego) to attack the cyclists on the ride with weapons. In addition, Board premeditates an "accidental" situation that could seriously injure, paralyze, or murder a Critical Mass rider. The comment he left on his blog details how he plans to plow through a group of riders with his automobile if he were ever behind the mass while awaiting a green light. Furthermore, Board premeditates lying about his motive and states that he would claim in court that he didn't see the cyclists.

On September 2, 2009 at 12:07am, Josh Board commented on his own blog stating the following:

I kinda liked the idea that if I ever run into the CM crowd, and I'm in my car...well, I just go when the light turns green. If that means a major accident, or someone falls over my hood, well...we'll let the courts decide who was wrong. Me going thru a green light (and possibly saying in court I just didn't see the cyclist, as I was looking down for a second, but I did see the light turn green and went, assuming that's a safe time to pull forward).
By JoshBoard 12:07 a.m., Sep 2, 2009

The link to the blog entry and comments can be found here:


Currently, the link leads to a page which reads 'Page Not Found.' It is uncertain whether or not there are technical difficulties with the website or if Josh Board intentionally removed the blog entry upon realizing the criminalizing nature of his statements and violent, potentially deadly, threats and actions.

Cyclists are encouraged to be on heightened alert and to ride especially defensive.

The following images are of Josh Board:

Josh Board has attacked once before and he may attack again. In fact, Board has expressed that he plans to attack again. Please, ride with special caution and lookout for the man pictured above.

Keep our community safe.

Update (9/17/09): We have confirmed that the original entry written by Board has, in fact, been deleted. The "Bicyclists and Poditrists" article he wrote is no longer available on the Reader website. Fortunately, screenshots of his direct statements were taken.


  1. haha it's still up on google cache <3

    Here's a link to the original post with all of the comments screenshot away :)

  2. Of course something like that would be printed and/or posted in the Reader/Reader.com. Such a gross publication.

  3. That is just shameful behavior.

  4. Please take a moment to send e-mails to businesses advertised in the Reader explaining why you will not patronize them. Be sure to copy the Reader so that a connection is made. Even more effective would be to stop by these businesses on a bicycle and let them know in person why you will not shop there. In light of the recent attacks on cyclists by radio DJs in large cities across America and now this attack coming from the print media, it is clearly time for direct action. Mr Board's personal contact information is public record. We know what he looks like. We know he drives a black PT Cruiser. We know he has admitted plans to assault cyclists again. Let's roll.
    - Kommando L. Mahr.

  5. He probably just said what the majority of San Diegans feel/think when they're run over by a mob of law-breaking anarchist (whether in simple behavior of the night or in philosophy as a whole) cyclists.

    Let me make this clear. You're not bringing attention to cyclist safety at all. You're inciting another mass of people who are now more irritated at cyclists than they've probably been in the past just driving by them. It's not at the fact you're on a bike, but the fact that when you create a mob mentality and disregard the civil laws we have intact, you're effectively taking the generalization that all people in cars hate cyclists and flipping it on it's head. Now all cyclists effectively (based on their behavior during CM) hate the laws and disregard pedestrians and any other mode of transportation during that time period.

    People are paying attention, but in CM's case, bad press is simply bad press. Your cause is hindered by your disregard for other people and laws. Try looking at Ghandi and exactly which laws he broke, and which ones he didn't, for some inspiration as to how to do that right. In fact,

    "Gandhi said that only people with a high regard for the law were qualified for civil disobedience. Only action by such people could convey the depth of their concern and win respect. No one thinks much of it when the law is broken by those who care nothing for it anyway." - Mark Shepard

  6. Nateritter,

    Thanks for reading. I appreciate that you put time into your response. It shows that you are interested in having a well thought out debate about this issue. However, we disagree. Here’s my case:

    ‘Let me make this clear.’ The only thing you made ‘clear’ is that you’re not a sociologist. There is absolutely no indication that your statements are grounded in any type of qualitative research or experience whatsoever. How many CM rides in SD have you ridden? How often do you ride a bicycle? Or, are you merely an armchair quarterback who poses as an expert on the internet in regards to an issue you actually have little to zero first-hand experience with?

    If you had experience riding in groups of people then you would know that (upon entering the intersection on a green light or when it’s your turn at a stop sign) it’s actually safer for an entire group of cyclists to continue through an intersection as a single, collective entity like a long truck rather than expect every single cyclist stop in the middle of a flow of bike traffic, and risk bike-on-bike collisions. It’s just not realistic or feasible. It’s about human safety. This is why the SDPD has the escorting protocol that they do. Safety is the goal. The event is treated like a unique type of parade—and justifiably so. Until there is a constitutional amendment to illegalize freedom of assembly, riding bikes in a group will be %100 legal. It’s not anarchic whatsoever. Practicing your constitutional right is patriotic.

    What’s not patriotic is unnecessarily funding hostile nations and petro-dictatorships that threaten our free society. Automobile/oil-dependency does this. Zero-emissions, human-powered vehicles do not. Therefore, allowing bike rides and changing laws that improve the quality of life for cyclists w/ the goal of increasing ridership is completely justified. Who are you looking out for, nateritter? Josh Board? A man who admitted assaulting a cyclist and premeditated vehicular assault?

    Society has designated a place for people like that. It’s called jail. Maybe you should read about the jail time that LA-area Dr. Thompson is facing due to his anti-cycling violence. You might even be inclined to start a fan club. You certainly sound like a fan.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. 1 of 2 above (at 12:31am).
    2 of 2 below:

    ‘Your cause is hindered by your disregard for other people and laws.’

    Actually, nateritter, do you realize that the most violated laws in California are laws pertaining to motorist speeding? Speeding above the speed limit in a car does nothing for safety. Yet motorists do it all the time. Many do so in areas w/ high pedestrian/bike traffic all while yapping/texting on a phone!

    ‘You're not bringing attention to cyclist safety at all. You're inciting another mass of people who are now more irritated at cyclists than they've probably been in the past just driving by them.’

    Wrong again. And I have facts to support my claim. SDCM is good for cycling because it makes people interested in riding a bike. 2 ½ years ago there were only 35 people at SDCM. Today there are about 1,000! People ride CM for different reasons. To proclaim that there is one motivation is wrong. Again, your inexperience w/ the movement and the ride are blindingly apparent.

    I know many people in SD who became interested in cycling after seeing CM go by. They got a bike as a result and now they ride everyday. This is the best thing about CM—many CMers become daily riders. And w/ more cyclists in the street, cycling becomes safer for all cyclists because motorists learn to adapt to a new social situation where bicycling is now popular. See “Safety In Numbers” by Peter Jacobsen.

    Finally, I will interpret your final paragraph as a compliment. I am actually very interested in laws pertaining to bicycling and w/ those that seek to curb deadly motorist behavior. (See my entry on April 15, 2010 for a recent example) I’ve studied the California Vehicle Code in-and-out. Nateritter, do you realize that new laws are constantly being written? In case you don’t know, in Idaho cyclists are allowed to treat a stop sign as a yield sign. There’s a strong movement to bring that law here. If we’re serious about fighting climate change and obesity, then we need to start introducing laws that will make life easier for cyclists. In the meantime, many California cyclists act like that law is already in place. We know that they’re not anarchists, because, as I demonstrated, then that would make speeding motorists anarchists, too.

    The key difference is that one transportation group is a climate solution. The other is a climate problem.

    And in the long run, if it’s not mitigated in time, climate change will reduce everyone’s quality of life. Cyclists are doing great things for society. You should thank one someday; rather than rushing to defend a man who assaults them and who premeditates vehicular assault w/ the capability of killing.

  9. @Bic Control - Any claim you make to Critical Mass being justified in breaking laws because “motorists do it too” is both childish and naïve. The fact is Critical Mass is against the law and even assembling at the water fountain before the ride is worthy of a citation for all in attendance. I have the laws to support this. Test me if you’d like.

    Secondly, just because people show up to ride in Critical Mass doesn’t mean that these same people are now casting aside their cars and relying on bikes as their primary means of travel. I’ve shown up to a costume party before but that doesn’t mean I’m walking around all day every day dressed as a pirate. I would LOVE to see your numbers supporting your “recruitment rate” for daily bike riders. I assure you I’ve done a massive amount of research on CM and talked to CM advocates, cycling advocates who detest CM and every one in between. The one thing all the reports seem to confirm is that any evidence supporting any claim CM has of helping any cause is coincidental or accidental at best. It goes against the nature of CM. CM is supposed to be a “celebration” without a cause, not a protest. Here’s a fun little quote from one of the most complete although outdated CM sites:
    “Critical Mass can be fun, but in and of itself, Critical Mass doesn't change anything. CM is effective only when combined with real advocacy -- such as lobbying local and state governments for bike lanes and progressive legislation. If all you and your cohorts do is ride your bikes around once a month, don't be surprised when nothing changes.” ~ Critical-Mass.info

    The one thing CM advocates fail to consider is a more safe and legal type of ride. If San Diego bike advocates were to band together and lobby the city for a sanctioned ride, with a whole lot of work and some time, they’d probably get approved. This means that the city would block the intersections, have more police allocated to the ride, and motorists would be notified of the route in advance so that altercations would be at a minimum. Why has no one from CM tried for this? Because it requires effort, thought and responsibility. Three things CM riders are unable and unwilling to exhibit. No, it’s far more fun to evade police and break the law. Not surprising why so many people accurately refer to you as anarchists.

    Next, the reason that bikes will never get equal treatment to cars on the road way is because bikes don’t may into the system. That’s right, you want freedoms? They come at a price. I pay annual vehicle registration fees, taxes on my gasoline, all which help support roadways and police. Bikes pay nothing into the system. You want your equal voice, put in your equal share of fees and taxes and then we can talk. Also, feel free to register your bike, mount license plates, and pass a rider’s exam to get your rider’s license. You want fair? Let's make everything even across the board.

  10. The idea that bikes are the solution to everything is a naive dream based on prejudice, propaganda and exaggeration of a few facts. We have bikes now, fat people still exist. If you say we should eliminate all cars, you’re excluding the elderly, injured, disabled, and children from any form of transportation. You don’t discriminate against the disabled do you? I hope not. Secondly, this law in Idaho is lovely, but riding your bike through town once a month won’t make that happen. Even though you bring light to the fact that the laws are constantly being rewritten, I haven’t seen any law change that makes Critical Mass a legal event. Not one.

    With no purpose and no resulting action from the ride, one can surmise that anarchy is the only true calling for the riders of CM. Any of the reasons I’ve heard and the lofty benevolent goals riders claim for CM could be achieved, with much greater efficiency by standing in front of a grocery store and telling people what you want. Is riding around on a bike going to change anything anywhere? Nope. If you think otherwise, please bring forth the proof. I beg you to prove it. CM claims over 300 cities worldwide, many of those in the US. You shouldn’t have a hard time finding plenty of proof of change enacted by CM… right? Well actually you might, because it doesn’t exist. I’ve looked.

    Is riding a bike a healthier and more fuel efficient way to travel. Sure if you’re physically able. Is it bad that anyone hits a rider with a rock? Of course. Was it wrong when the dozen or so riders hit and kicked my car while screaming obscenities me? Absolutely. Difference being, I didn’t have any bleeding heart environmentalists to back me up. Somehow if you’re a rider in CM the idea is that you’re above the law and incapable of any wrongdoing. Elitist cyclists who feel they’re above the law and ignore any and all authority or attempts to reprimand for their lawlessness. How are you not anarchists??

    Facebook.com/endcminsd - Feel free to leave your “proof” and comments on this page until the site is finished. In the meantime, we’ll be monitoring and recording the rides for evidence. Happy cycling!!

  11. I do see some things wrong with CM. Mostly a lack of control of extremist which predicate the creation of other extremist. But the good; building of relationships, crossing cycle culture boundaries, and CM's ability to put numbers in the face of the non riding mass are vitally important. When you say cyclist, you often say "that one person in the bike lane I see once and a while" or you say "that group of spandex riders on weekends in carlsbad". Those are easy to dismiss as arbitrary. When you have a large, vibrant and visible CM, it changes. You then say cyclist and you say "there's a lot of us, we're vocal, and we have the right and ability to demand respect".

    CM is illegal in many ways.

    I don't agree with the needs for permits. The "more than 50" rule or what ever; is created for secondary enforcement. You get more than 50 people at the door of a store when there is a good sale. You get more than 50 out side of clubs down town. All waiting for the same thing. Those waiting outside clubs block sidewalks, generally get rude if told to move, ect. There is a parallel there. So the "permit" issue is mute.

    But, running lights, even as a group is not legal. It makes sense, it is safer (arguably) and works to keep the group together as well as meet the general feeling of the mass. But, not legal and the police have the right, proper backing of the law and more over, do enforce the rules. Mostly they pick off solo riders, which, if you're solo, you're not in the mass. It is illegal to attack cars, attack drivers for any reason. Self defense, however, is not illegal. Supposing there are no police to defuse or stop an act of violence, there is always the right for self defense. Though, personally not fearful of most anything, I'm a firm believer that you can defuse most all situations verbally or by leaving. And to add to that, there are few situations you can NOT simply ride away from. I have my triggers (hate speech and racism always get me going), but mostly... don't care.

    The police ride as a way of keeping the peace and as an investment in the protection of citizens, rather than support of cyclist in general. Delayed cars have, very seriously, run over cyclist in critical mass in more than one occasion. If you read on many websites, even some 'cyclist' (using the term loosely) advocate running people over. The police are there mainly to keep things peaceful. If there were any real leadership to CM (a point often missed by those that don't "get" it.), the police would engage them.

  12. Some police enjoy the crowd, it's amusing, others are aggressive and make threats. Personally, the last time I rode, an officer threatened to "bash your fucking face in" when I stopped to move a cyclist away from a pedestrian. The cyclist was being an idiot, and the pedestrian was..slightly drunk. I had physically moved the cyclist back into the street to ride away when the officer arrived and made the threat. Another officer stepped in, intervened, and thanked me for diffusing.

    I've tried talking to various officers on a personal level to, #1, thank them for the protection and tolerance and #2 get an understanding of what would better work as far as CM and police interaction, better movement of the crowd and how to isolate the idiots on both sides. Interaction at that level was a mixed bag. One told me "I know where you live now", the other said he didn't care. The general perspective is that CM is for anarchy. Which is easy to understand how that point of view comes up. Despite some negative interaction, I wholly support the police who arrive and escort along. They are a good multiplier of balance and keeping the peace.

    Majority rule is not always right, and you can't always argue that what is good for the majority is best for all. If that were true, we'd have no disabled person facilities. This has been proven on multiple strata's. America was created by the standard that a minority was pushed out by the "right majority". We then dumped some tea, and refused to march in colums and wear read as others in "power" said "civilized" people do. So, an unconvential outpush is historicaly our method, and successful. So the ideal that “there are more cars than bikes, and that makes right” is wrong.

    What's my view on the current minor ill feelings passed around? Some of the negative people "attacking" critical mass are simply minor idiots who need a productive hobby. Lacking a good relationship, friends or possibly having control issues drives a need to lash out at something. Lashing out and being a "victim" creates a sense of power where they are unwilling or unable to have realized self importance or ability to handle inadequacies. Some do have valid complaints. Un-earned damage to property is wrong and they deserve a redress. But behind most of this, is a martyr and a bunch of "me toos". What most of these internet groups miss; The internet is the largest "me too" bandwagon there is. You can get 3 million people who say "I agree" and "let's go kill". But actual participation is less. Look at the anti CM crowd...40 ish strong. Actual participation: minor. Look at the CM page. 400 or so members: actual participation: closer to one thousand. So, just because someone owns a keyboard and 40 people with nothing to do in the evening, doesn’t mean there’s a “huge movement”. I count movement and need in actual people with feet on ground. I have yet to see an anti CM protest at the fountain. That would be something realistic. Facebook post, not so much. Especially when those who are on FB are typically afraid to say their real name, nor meet in person. However, those that have said they “will meet” in person, have made underground comments to others that they’d meet with the underground plan to “kick some cyclist ass”. Shamefull and stupid, really.

  13. CM simply needs to weed out violent assclowns who act independently and cowardly with in the face of the crowd. But, it should never give up it’s right to assemble, stand for what it believes in, and require shared rights to the roads. Nor should it give into to threats, or fail to pursue those that threat or pursue actual violence.

    Is CM right? Yes. Is it productive? Sure, it’s grabbed attention to topics that were largely ignored or put on the back burner. CM is really, an indication of why America has been, and will continue to be great. Active, involved citizens who will band together to voice their descent and need for a change. That’s America.

  14. And, before anyoe decries me an anarchist or saying I don't understand what it means to be an "american":
    I've been in 12 different countries.
    I've fought in two different wars.
    I'm college educated.
    I'm a veteran.

    Doesn't make me a hero, perfect, or brilliant, it just means I have proper perspective.

  15. SD Cyclist, I appreciate your service. Unfortunately I have to disagree with your claims.

    Is CM right? No. It's an unlawful event that asserts nothing more than the fact that with people, anyone can avoid the law. It provides the unlawful with a forum to cause chaos and escape punishment. There is no clear message delivered to the city or its people who are affected by the ride. I've witnessed CM on several occasions. Other than hooting and hollering there was no message delivered to bystanders. No one ever said, "Hey, if you enjoy this, here's how to support us." Nothing. Instead I witnessed cyclists screaming at pedestrians, beating on cars, and yelling at motorists whose cars they were blocking.

    Is it productive? No. I haven't been able to find a single positive or measurable result in any city around the country that can be attributed to Critical Mass.

    If you don't like the laws on the books, lobby to change them. If you don't like cars, protest the manufacturers. If you don't like oil, protest the oil companies. If you want more bike lanes, petition the city. There's not a single inch of bike lane anywhere in the US that can be attributed to Critical Mass. The only thing that changes because of Critical Mass is the tread on the tires of the bikes. The only think created because of Critical Mass is separation and animosity between cyclist, pedestrians and motorists.

    If you have a point to make, make it. If you have demands, make them known. Riding around blocking traffic hasn't changed a single thing in San Diego to date and is unlikely it ever will.

    Violence needs to be quelled on BOTH sides. What I find funny is that when someone like this author even suggests violence, CM is in UPROAR over him to the point where he's fired. I get that. What I don't get is how after talking to the SDPD, reading numerous reports on the internet, and my own personal experience having riders beat my car and scream profanities at me.... NO ONE is CM is willing to do a thing. This one of many examples of the hypocrisy of CM. It's been noted that CM causes damage and problems for nearly all cities with a ride and no one in CM wants to take responsibility. Of course when someone speaks out against CM they want their head on a platter.

    CM also makes it impossible for the police to step in and do the cleanup for the riders. When you're surrounded by hundreds of cyclists all breaking the law, how does one pick out the troublemakers. When they make an attempt, CM screams harassment. CM won't police themselves, and they have the police so worried of harassment suits that they won't step in. So who takes care of the problems? No one.

    This is why CM needs to stop.

  16. Extremely well said, SD Cyclist. It's clear that you're a true expert on Critical Mass and a not a fraud, posing as an expert.

    @End Critical Mass, there are a few sound claims in your statements but overall you sound like a student who wrote a book report by reading the Cliffs Notes rather than the actual book.

    Your claims are reactionary and are poorly supported, if at all. Consider, for ex., your insinuation in your 4th paragraph that cyclists don't deserve freedom on the road because we haven't paid the "price" for it.

    In fact, research shows that motorists owe a lot more to society than you currently pay. Granted, you pay for your state registration and that a % of the $ you spend on gasoline to propel your large vehicle is taxed. What that money goes to, however, is building highways and freeways (the latter of which cyclists are discriminated from using about 99% of the time). Motorists' fees pay for most of the $ that goes to freeway & highway construction, but not all of it. The rest comes out of the general fund, which taxpayers like myself and other cyclists contribute to. So a % of my taxes goes to building freeways which divide my local neighborhoods, spew gases, make noise, waste land, and facilitate global-warming acceleration machines, more commonly referred to as cars, which flood the lanes and connecting arteries like a daily, rude, ugly, impersonal, anti-celebratory version of critical mass...All the while, I--as a cyclist--am forbidden from using this service!

    Wow, what freedom! I better start saving all my pennies now so that I can pay--as you insinuate--my price to use certain freedoms...like freeways? Oh wait, no, we cyclists would still be banned from using those.

    Well, what about roads? It turns out, according to a Grist investigative piece, that "The average driver travels 10,000 miles in town each year and contributes $324 in taxes and direct fees. The cost to the public, including direct costs and externalities, is a whopping $3,360.

    On the opposite pole, someone who exclusively bikes may go 3,000 miles in a year, contribute $300 annually in taxes, and costs the public only $36, making for a profit of $264. To balance the road budget, we need 12 people commuting by bicycle for each person who commutes by car."

    BAM! Your claims debunked. For more info, as well as support for my above claims, read here: http://www.grist.org/article/2010-09-27-why-an-additional-road-tax-for-bicyclists-would-be-unfair/

    Note that this analysis does not take into account the public $ that will be required to offset and prevent damages caused by global warming, of which your car contributes to every day you drive.

  17. What your fact-less claim about cyclists 'not paying into the system' shows is that you're not a cycling advocate whose anti-CM. As evidenced above, you're actually an anti-cyclist whose also anti-CM. This is a very important distinction. More on this later...

    In summary, I've completely shredded your fact-less claim to pieces. I'd be happy to move on to other subjects including Critical Mass, an important event for a historically conservative and auto-centric city...two schools-of-thought which it sounds like you champion.

    Before that I have some questions for you. I'm sorry that some riders who appeared to be riding w/ CM hit your car. Violence is unacceptable...except in the case of self-defense as SD Cyclist pointed out. (A quick side point: There ARE a number of veteran CM riders who passionately discourage and verbally address violent riders who take advantage of the mass. They address the violent riders directly in person and pass out flyers discouraging violence @ the ride. You just don't know who these veteran riders are because you're not a fraction of the master researcher you claim to be).

    Back to the incident which inspired you to espouse your anti-cyclist beliefs: So what exactly happened that night when you found yourself surrounded by "a dozen" "riders" who yelled at you and hit your car? What inspired them to resort to physical action against you? Did you drive in a way that made them feel threatened? Did you provoke them? Did you allow for a safe amount of space in between you and these cyclists? Did you respect their right to the full lane?

    Please let me know. I'm very curious.