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“Just yield to me.”

November 22, 2013

Photo by Dmitry Gudkov

Eleven-year-old Esme Brauer, the wonderful daughter of my friends and fellow activists Hilda Cohen and Nathan Brauer, delivered a speech at the March for Pedestrian Safety in Fort Greene that was about as eloquent as any I’ve ever heard from livable streets advocates three or four times her age:

 “I’m growing up in Brooklyn. And when you’re living in Brooklyn, you learn the rules of the street. And you follow them,” she said, loudly and clearly. “But no matter how much you follow them, when you are on the street, your life is in someone else’s hands. Everyone else’s hands. And most of these hands are on the steering wheel of a car. So it matters if I follow the rules of the street. But it also matters if you follow the rules of the street. And you can do this easily. Just yield to me. Stop at red lights. Go the right way. Just drive safely. For me and for everyone who walks the streets of Brooklyn.”

You can read more about this week’s rally in this excellent post from the New York Times’ Motherlode blog by Hope Reeves.

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