Well, the article on P.K. going on a bike ride was published in the Willamette Week today. It’s a typical ‘bad boy makes nice’ PR piece, and reading between the lines I can almost hear P.K.’s bosses telling him in no uncertain terms he needs to get on a bike, smile, and say apologetic things. Can’t afford to lose those sponsors.
And it’s better than nothing. But I’m still angry. And I still want more. I want the Playhouse to release the recording of the 7/13 show.
Don’t get me wrong. I think it’s great P.K. strapped on a borrowed helmet (which is riding WAYY too high on his head in the WW photo) and climbed on a borrowed bike. If that makes him even a tad more sensitive to the hostility cyclists are made to feel every day that they hit the road, then it was time well spent.
But for me it all comes down to the following excerpt from the article:
PK says he never directly encouraged hatred or violence merely made a poor joke. But he admits the joke went too far: “It was one of those times where you look back and go, yeah, I was an idiot there,” he says. “To the people that were affected by it, I absolutely apologize”
See? it was just a joke. Except the one quote from the 7/13 show that we DO have is: “If you’re a cyclist, you should know that I exist, that I don’t care about you, that I don’t care about your life.” And it seems to be generally accepted that the radio crew applauded the news of a biker being hit by a car.
That doesn’t sound like a joke to me. But, unless we get to hear what was actually said on the air, people will say “Hey, he apologized and went on a nice photo op bike ride. Get off his back. No harm done.” Let’s just move on. Let it go.
I know there are idiots out there that are sincere about their hatred for cyclists. I have to share the road with them. And I know some of them were cheering as they listened to the 7/13 show. It was not, and is not, a joke to them. And it is not a joke to me.
If PK, The Playhouse and Jammin’ 95.5 want to sincerely try to make amends, the first step is a genuine acknowledgment of what was said. And that means making the recording of the program available to the public. Until they do that, they’re just blowing smoke and doing PR.