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LA’s scooter wars sound like the early days of automobiles

Young women ride shared electric scooters in Santa Monica, California, on July 13, 2018. ]
Young women ride shared electric scooters in Santa Monica, California, on July 13, 2018. ]
ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images

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Hard to believe but it’s only been about a year since electric scooters started buzzing along the streets of Southern California, causing turmoil on sidewalks and spurring an outpouring of complaints.

As cities struggle to regulate the zippy new mobility option, the lines have been drawn: some see the scooters as an affordable, green alternative to driving, others as a threat to their peace and safety.

But it’s worth pointing out that there are echoes of the contempt directed at e-scooters today in what greeted another innovation introduced more than a century ago: the automobile.

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