Does Hopkins get pedestrian safety or are they playing the blame the victim game?

In this Baltimore Sun article Hopkins students get Walking 101 has an overall tone that distracted walking is a major problem.
That's one of the university's most notorious spots for "pedtextrians," students blithely waltzing through traffic, heads buried in smart phones.

OMG look at that pedestrian using a cell phone while in a crosswalk, that's dangerous. Well Streets blog and Washcycle get into the issue of why making distracted walking a major issue is just wrong.

The issue is if you actually do walk in Baltimore you know drivers way too often do not stop for you in crosswalks. I have almost been run down by drivers on the cell phone while they were turning. So ya, maybe distracted walking is a problem... that is only if we expect pedestrians to have super powers and be able to jump out of the way of distracted drivers. :/

But you are supposed to yield to cars. I can't tell you how often I have heard that while riding my bike. If drivers feel this way about another vehicle what hope do pedestrians have? The second part of this is few fully understand pedestrian laws, see Surprising Aspects of Pedestrian Laws

Let's look at pedestrian safety initiatives elsewhere:

Update: Yield to pedestrians or else

The Best Way to Deal With Crosswalk-Blocking Drivers Ever

Sadly I have to interject that failing to come to a complete stop where you are supposed to is beyond rude, it is intimidating as heck to pedestrians. Too many drivers fail to even stop at all when making a right-on-red (the video is in Europe so they have a left-on-red) so even when a pedestrian has the right-of-way at a light they are confronted with a steady stream of motorists not stopping. Once this becomes the norm it is safer to cross mid-block. Failure to acknowledge the mass civil disobedience called "jaywalking" is the result of pedestrians trying to increase their safety because of unlawful motorist behavior is a major problem in the state of Maryland. Enforcement needs to crack down on both motorist and pedestrians, the emphasis on cracking down on pedestrians with a made up issue but NO mention of known driver issues is very sick. IMHO.

Back to the Baltimore Sun article
Drivers, too, will be asked to be careful through signs on university buses and a banner hanging from the pedestrian bridge
Seriously, that's it, drivers just be careful?

The university will hang 3,000 pairs of shoes -- footwear officials and volunteers spent months gathering and collecting. They're all spray-painted bright caution yellow to make them impossible to miss, along with their intended message that boils down to "watch where you're going, kids."
I just wanted to cry when I read this, it starts out so good and I am anticipating something like "Motorist cause pedestrian injuries and death so motorist obey the law and stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk." Instead it concludes "watch where you're going, kids." That is just so wrong. This is what is implied to drivers:
Drivers don't worry if you hit a pedestrian, they don't know what they are doing and need to get out of your way.

Great safety promotion guys, NOT! We need something better then this!

Lastly they mention long term plans for road improvements so I will point out this out SIGNALIZED INTERSECTION ENHANCEMENTS THAT BENEFIT PEDESTRIANS

by B' Spokes

Like most people I live a hectic life and who has the time for much exercise? Thanks to xtracycle now I do. By using my bike for daily activities I can get things done and get an hour plus work out in 15 minutes extra of my time, not a bad deal and beats taking the extra time going to the gym. In case you are still having trouble being motivated; the National Center of Disease Control says that inactivity is the #2 killer in the United States just behind smoking. ( ) Get out there and start living life! I can carry home a full shopping cart of groceries, car pool two kids or just get lost in the great outdoors camping for a week. Well I got go, another outing this weekend.
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