Monday, January 20, 2020

Thorough debunking of fares, means-testing, and #racism

Given that the pay-per-ride system for public transit is regressive, unjust, and cuts against the benefits of having mass transit even in a simplistic Econ 101 universe, there are shockingly few American cities that offer free and universal transit. Even internationally, pay-per-ride is the norm. What’s happening here? The answer is that cities around the world have been convinced that making public transit free invites only “undesirable” riders. This is disappointing to put it mildly, but I think it offers us a valuable lesson in how to approach our arguments for universalizing services.