What about the yellow vests, how is that relevant? I don't really understand what you mean.
That said rural France is car dependent in a way that is not true of, say, rural Germany. But that also seems like a bit of a non-sequitur. Let's say you live in a rural area, let's say Vitteaux (cus I know someone there) and you want to go to Paris. Prior to this decision you have 3 options: 1. drive to Paris, 2. get to Dijon, fly to Paris, 3. get to Dijon, train to Paris. There are a number of reasons why you might choose option 1: bringing a lot of stuff, going somewhere far from the center of Paris so plane/train are inconvenient, need to leave at a weird time of day, carpooling, etc. Removing option 2 doesn't affect those factors at all. You'd be right to say that "getting from Vitteaux to Dijon" is harder on transit in France that between comparable towns in Germany but that would be a separate issue altogether.