The answer is instead, to write a bunch of emails. Have you written yours? The SFBC makes it easy.
This actually reflects nicely on one of the things I like most about the internet. For a lot of stuff, it lowers the bar to participation – and civic/government stuff is a prime example. There are some ~350k people who ride Muni every day. But only a few dozen, (sometimes non-representative) riders actually go to the meetings and tell the people making the decisions (who too often don’t actually use the systems themselves) what they think is best. But in this brave new world, with the internet, some 650 people have written emails to the mayor already. (Yes, I just referenced a comment on a blog post as a source, sue me.) Now, 650 >> a few dozen. That’s awesome. Unfortunately, 350k >> 650, but let’s take another look at these numbers 10 years down the road.
If you use Muni, please consider taking a few minutes and dumping your thoughts about Muni’s situation on the mayor and the SFMTA board. Here’s the fruits of my evening Caltrain ride.
To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
From: Mike Fogel
Subject: cuts to muni are not the answer
Dear Mayor Newsom:
Over New Years Eve, while walking home a young man assaulted me in attempt to get at my wallet. He didn’t get my wallet, but he did separate my right shoulder and send me to the ER with blood draining down my face.
The result was I found myself suddenly dependent on Muni for basic transportation. Previously, I rarely used Muni – only when biking or walking was not an option for some reason.
Muni ridership is often broken into two groups: ‘choice riders’ and ‘transit-dependent riders’. But the reality is this is a false dichotomy. At one point or another, we all find ourselves to be ‘transit-dependent’ riders.
It is said that a good estimate the health of a community is to look at how it treats those most in need. To remain healthy, our city needs Muni stronger and faster than ever – not weaker and more crowded. A strong Muni is an essential part of our city, without which we cannot grow.
I urge you to look to cutting other, non-essential luxury services our city provides for funding the current Muni shortfall.
Thank you for your time.