Tuesday, September 07, 2004

If they'd only taken my class 

Do-gooders abound at SCSU:
This week, in conjunction with a young man in our community completing his Eagle Scout Project, the Campus Recreation Department will launch the �Yellow Bike Project� for the St. Cloud State Community. The purpose of the project is to provide bikes to the St. Cloud State Community that can be used for healthy transportation around campus. All of the bikes have been donated to our department and are painted yellow so that users know that they are free to use and part of this project. Each bicycle has been inspected and repaired, if needed, and are in excellent working order. The Campus Recreation Department will keep the bikes in good working order, collect and provide more bikes when needed and pick-up and store the bikes during the winter. I encourage you to feel free to utilize this program and we look forward to expanding the program to the St. Cloud Community in the near future.

After the university posted the announcement, the usual enthusastic responses ensued.
If only. My introduction to economics students often get the Berry Bikes assignment, based on this essay from The Freeman. A colleague who gets it reports as well in an email to me:
The year I left Charlottesville, VA, they started the Yellow Bike services. The operation in the first week was fine, but the bikes began to disappear in the desginated locations. On day, I drove around a poorer neighborhood and saw some kids riding the bikes; I didn't think they were not commuting. While this was not the intended use of the bikes, I think the bikes were in good hands! So I support the Yellow Bike services in St. Cloud, because some kids will have new second-hand bikes for free. Watching the smile on their faces is a joy.

I wonder if the Eagle Scout candidate will learn anything about private property.