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MTB Hater Gets Busted in Berkeley Hills

Anyone who has read or participated in online conversations about mountain biking, trail access and the environment has likely come across Michael Vandeman's anti-MTB screeds.

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What!?
What!?

Maybe the fact that the guy was busted in Berkeley, California explains a good bit of his whackedness. Still, going after a mountain biker with a handsaw is uncool no matter how you, um, slice it (or how much you dislike MTBs).

OK, as any self-protecting journalist should do, the handsaw bit should be preceeded by “allegedly.” So the sentence should read thusly: Michael J. Vandeman was arrested by UC Berkeley police on May 28 after he allegedly attacked a bicyclist with a handsaw on a fire trail above the UC Berkeley campus weeks earlier.

Thanks to a report by www.berkeleyside.com, we came across Vandeman’s “alleged” antics. But anyone who has read or participated in online conversations about mountain biking, trail access and the environment has likely come across Vandeman’s screeds.

But going from relatively benign harping about mountain bikers on the Internet to actually (um, allegedly) whacking one with a saw out on a trail is another story.

Here’s a bit of Vandeman’s work that we noted last fall (Editor’s note: Scroll down the post a bit to find Vandeman’s entry in the link to Continental Divide National Scenic Trail):

Bloggers Know Best In November there was a bit of blog discussion on allowing mountain biking on parts of the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail. In the discussion thread there was a screed by one individual who said, “Bicycles should not be allowed in any natural area. They are inanimate objects and have no rights.”

Inanimate!? Does my faithful steed not hear my exhortations!? Does she not heed my crop and share in my pain!? She comes stock with a Brain, therefore she is!

Whilst we are philosophizing, let Kierkegaard place our blogger friend’s words into perspective: “People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use.”

Our blogger buddy hits just about every, hmmm, point, including that mountain biking “kills small animals and plants on and next to the trail, drives wildlife and other trail users out of the area, and (worst of all) teaches kids that the rough treatment of nature is okay (it’s NOT!).”

Well, it is NOT! And to prove that some furry, mammal-like bi-pedal forest dwellers just aren’t gonna take it anymore, we have video…

Meanwhile, Singletrack.com will keep you posted on Vandeman’s adventure through the legal system as it plays out.

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