Part of the issue here is how cities have been developed.
David Byrne does a good job of discussing this in his book "Bicycle Diaries"
The great cycling cities I have seen in Europe are developed at all levels of infrastructure to be friendly to the pedestrian and non-motorized traffic. Cities here may have started out that way, but have spread outward in a pattern that makes it very difficult if not impossible to get from point A to point B across the city on just surface roads. I see that in the Newark area to some degree. There are several arterial roads that bisect the area and a road that at one time went through is now segmented with dead ends. I have a few choke points I have to get across to get to and from campus. Both of those main highways (Parkway and Rt 280) have very few places to get across, and those cross points are larger city roads with two lanes of traffic in each direction, street side parking, and no place to buffer between you and traffic. Once I do get across the highways, I have to zig zag all over the place to get anywhere if I want to avoid the high traffic/low safety roads. To get around this with bike paths would involve a major reworking of all the infrastructure - car and bike. It isn't just that the drivers aren't bike friendly, it is the way the cities have been built out.
I would love to see street side parking turned into bike lanes, however, in the neighborhoods I ride through, lots of residences don't actually have driveways. They only place for those people to park is street-side. I don't think we should punish the people living in those places for having cars - many of them probably need those cars to get to work because highways have cut off their neighborhoods from surface road access to the business districts.
I'm not saying things shouldn't be tried and I am not saying there are ways to improve the bikability of places that don't involve major construction. I just think it in many places it is a bigger project than people may realize in particular in the cities that have been developed in particularly car-centric ways. Build it and they will come, but to build it, someone has to front a hefty price tag it will take, and seeing so few people out on bikes isn't likely to breed confidence in the people holding the purse strings.