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Earl Shoop

Founder, gridlocksmith.com

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A new peace movement, that set in a place where we can decide to be the compassionate humans that we must become to create World Peace.

"Road Peace is a step toward World Peace."
Whether we walk, cycle or drive, we can judge our own behavior and ask, "Am I acting like someone who is at peace with the world?"
We each have the absolute power to change the attitude and behavior of one person, and it is crucial that we each take on the task. World Peace may be far off in the distance, but the journey begins now, with this first step: decide to evolve into the sort of human we must each become - patient, kind, thoughtful, compassionate, caring, forgiving and loving - in order to make peace possible. If we all notice our progress, as motorists, cyclists and pedestrians, "Road Peace" may be the first milestone on the road to World Peace.
As we progress in our development of peaceful habits, on the road, our behaviors are likely to improve in other areas of our lives, as well. When people perceive that our social mores have evolved toward kindness, and away from selfishness, we will have made significant progress.
I am just a free-lance world changer, and have not yet decided to incorporate this project as a nonprofit. The website (gridlocksmith.com) is done by me, not a professional web designer. The items that I have designed were done on out of date software. "Amateur Hour" all around... but... Kon-Tiki was built by amateurs, while Titanic was built by the pros.

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    Jul 30 2011: We will never know what we can do, if we fail to even try. You point out some seriously challenging pieces that need to be looked at. Thanks for contributing.
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    Jul 30 2011: Earl, bikes are a also compassion machinery. Thank you very much for your inspiration and hospitality. You are member of American Automobile Association...its OK.

    Today we start the World Bike Web (WBW).
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    Jul 29 2011: Earl,
    I noticed this site and read...a peace movement that locates a place where we can decide to be compassionate....
    WELL YEAH...EVERYWHERE!!!

    OK...road peace...good place to start! I am a bicyclist, and MOST vehicular drivers are respectful and courteous. However, there are still a few who get really upset that there are bicylists on "their" roads, and they become dangerous at times! So dangerous that people riding bikes have been killed or severely injured. I don't even think that some drivers know that bicyclist are following the same rules, and have the same rights as those in a vehicle (at least in this state). When one is driving a vehicle, s/he is in control of several thousand pounds of metal in the form of a vehicle. This can do a lot of damage to a little person on a bike, and it would be helpful for people to remember that fact.
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      Jul 29 2011: Signora Collen maybe the best place is our own heart (in a bike).
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        Jul 29 2011: Luigi,
        The best place to start with ANYTHING is from our own heart...our own awareness of what is going on around us...non e forse cosi?
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          Jul 30 2011: Da vero Signora Colleen, da vero..nel nostro cuore comincia tutto, e anche finisce. Ma primo cominciaremo per amare, solo cosi senza teoria, senza dire niente. Grazie e c'e ne andiamo a la bicicletta. Una idea signora... perche noi non cominciamo per inventare una BiciclEtica? Una etica dalla bicicletta. il punto de partenza e questa conversazione a TED....possiamo aprire un altra conversazione : "LA CITTA BISOGNA UNA BICICLETICA"

          Qui a Roma cominciaro subito, perche per andare al mio lavoro, che non e lontano dalla mia casa Io prendo la bicicleta, ma comme lei lo sa benissimo, la machina e furiosa. Signora Colleen il posto e presto.
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        Jul 30 2011: I agree Luigi that everything begins in our heart.
        It is GREAT that you ride your bike to work. It is good exercise and good for the environment.
        Keep up the good work:>)
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    Jul 27 2011: Hi Earl. I find the link between 'road etiquette', for want of a better term, and spreading peace extremely original, and also quite concrete. As a cyclist, I know first hand how frustrating the lack of road etiquette and consideration can be. I used to ride as close to parked cars as possible, leaving the majority of the lane to drivers. However, having flown over opened car doors three times (thankfully without serious injury), I now make sure I give parked cars enough space to allow for suddenly opened doors - and as a result must deal with irate drivers who feel that I am hogging their space. I get upset because I am using a more environmentally friendly mode of transportation and pull over to the side as soon as there is a gap in the parked cars (and as more and more bike paths are created here, the less I use regular roads). I get upset because my rights are not being respected, they get upset because they view me as slowing them down and taking up their space, and everyone loses. I can attest to the fact that your movement can make a real difference if it catches on.
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      Jul 29 2011: Kriss, thanks for sharing. Your analysis is quite good. My youngest brother died when he was struck on his bicycle, so, I can empathize with your survival concerns. Do you wear a reflective vest to make yourself more visible? It also signals to drivers that you are a serious rider, who probably gives some thought to safety. I wonder if the words, "Be Kind" on your back would be helpful.... or maybe other words, like, "Please Don't Kill Me!" or "Live And Let Live."

      Are you part of a bicyclist organization? If so, perhaps members would agree to always show courtesy to others (pedestrians and other cyclists, as well as motorists) and to display identification of your group along with ID number. Accountability tends to foster better behavior, and, when taken on voluntarily, will gain respect from others. Just a thought. Be well.
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        Jul 29 2011: Lots to think abour, Earl. I don't really have time for any more organisations (on two Board of Directors, am on about four committees, and actively volunteer woth five non-profits), so while this is a great suggestion, it just isn't practical for me. I do make sure to always wear a helmut. A reflective vest would definitely be useful in some situations, and that is something that I will add. Thanks!
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    Jul 27 2011: A small step for man is a giant leap for mankind.I like your idea.It is our generation who should start paving the road to World Peace.
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      Jul 27 2011: Thanks, Muhammad. I suspect it will take more than a few more generations to work out all the difficulties. My hope for our generation is that we get most people involved in the journey.... or the task of, as you say, paving the road...
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        Jul 28 2011: Indeed, but to get as many people to be involved in 'paving the road' would be the hardest part in this task.So, there's no more time to wait any longer.Now is the time to move! Let's start together!
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          Jul 29 2011: Do you have a particular action in mind?

          Up to this point, my efforts have been aimed at two things: 1) making sure that I remember to be the best example I can be, as I tend to my own evolution... and 2) gaining exposure for the concept, through promoting the website (gridlocksmith.com), where people can read about it and find items in my little online shop (mugs, t-shirts, bumper stickers, etc.) that can be used to help spread the word. I hope to raise funds for radio and TV spots to create awareness and encourage supportive behavior in the general population. Fund raising has not been going well. Currently, I am looking for odd jobs to pay the rent, etc.
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        Jul 29 2011: Is there anything I can help you with?
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          Aug 7 2011: Sorry for the delay... lots to do. Anyone can help spread the ideas, encourage friends to check out the site, get some of the bumper stickers (shipping for 10 is the same as for one, plus, there is a discount) give them to friends. The site could use lots of improvement. Know anyone who can tutor me?
          I'm just one guy
          Who's scraping by.
          With little college;
          Even less knowledge...
          Still, I have to try.

          Thanks for your interest.
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        Aug 7 2011: Can you put the link to the site here.I would love to spread this to the locals here.Thank you so much. ;)
  • Jul 30 2011: global peace is not possible, people will never be tolerant of each other to the degree of achieving world peace. The only theoretical way to make world peace is to join all society and cultures together, for as long as people can not accept each other, fear will emit from the unknown. The unkown will always exist so long as we do not know the answers to all of life questions, because of this we created religions and such and through these find comfort but because of this we also will always have fear and hate of others and intolerance.
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      Jul 30 2011: Luke maybe the global peace is not possible, but your own world peace is real and posible. Small is beautifull. We have to start in our own home, our bedroom, our garden and our family. In our own heart. With or without religions or sistems to believe in something, we can believe in ourselves. Dont you believe?
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    Jul 30 2011: Earl, from my perspective, this is one area where we can personally contribute for world peace and your passion and leadership in this area can have, indeed, an aggregate impact for world peace.

    Sometimes I like to think with "total solutions" but a simple solution such as what you are engaged is perhaps what we can truly contribute individually and effectively. Count me as one of your supporter!

    Going back to this "total solution" or what I call solution strategies that I see we are all trying to implement, your idea would be part of solution 5 - our personal contribution in transforming our world, just like for instance the campaign for carbon footprint or water footprint. http://bit.ly/SolutionStrategies

    Road peace has many dimensions like road rage, teenage car accidents (no.1 killer for teens), road peace and public transport, carbon footprint and green energy, etc.)

    Way to go Earl!
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      Aug 7 2011: Thanks! I will be checking out your site.
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        Aug 8 2011: Thank you Earl for your encouraging words.

        Road peace indeed is one important way in understanding world peace. We drive on the road with enormous trust that we have for each other. Sure the basic mindset in driving is self-preservation but that's too close to negativity and rage.

        When we drive with the outlook of great care and trust for each other, there would be greater hope in accelerating our transformation and transition efforts to move our world into a more just and sustainable global home.
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          Aug 9 2011: Sympatico, bro! That is the challenge... many who feel powerless in their lives, get a feeling of power behind the wheel, which they feel is usurped by other drivers, who may go faster, or change lanes in front of them, or whatever affront... We need to think of ways to get folks to realize the power of kindness and thoughtfulness.

          One way to present "Road Peace" is as the way to displace road rage.

          I wonder if all the folks partaking in this discussion can bring it to the attention of others. Let's turn on more people to the treasures of TED.

          This will be a tough week, as I am caring for my grand-daughter (12 weeks old)... but I shall return! PS- I deleted this from above, since it did not post as a reply, + moved it here. Am I being totally A. Compulsive?
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    Jul 30 2011: Colleen you and I are the very first founders of the World Bike Web. (WBW) Do you want to be a foundational member?