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Black and Blue

"You and I are also very much alike, maybe in more ways than we are different."

Congratulations!! You just purchased your new motorcycle and have received delivery on it. It’s a brand new S1BMWHDCBRXXX.You’ve been waiting for it for days, weeks or months, and now it has finally arrived. You’ve ridden it home and it’s sitting in your driveway. You’ve washed it, waxed it and called your own.

You’re proud of your ride and rightly so. You have invested your hard earned money in this lovely two wheeled creature that you are so sure is the best of its class on the market. You want to show it to everyone you know and even people you don’t. So get involved with your friendly riders group supported by your brand. Join BMW Motorcycle Owners of America‚ (BMWMOA), Honda Riders Club of America‚ (HRC), Gold Wing Road Riders Association‚ (GWRRA), Harley Owners Group‚ (HOG), or Good Times Owners Club‚ (GTOC). These organizations bring together people like you who enjoy your variety of motorcycle.

But also remember this. You and I are also very much alike, maybe in more ways than we are different. We both enjoy feeling the wind in our face as we ride our two-wheeled stead down the back roads of America. We love the full body experience of riding as we lean our bike into the curves away from the hustle and bustle of our everyday work life. We are also alike in that we are the recipients of many well-meaning measures designed to protect us from ourselves.

Because we as motorcyclists are a relatively small group of the total population, we cannot afford to split ourselves up when it comes to defending our motorcycling rights. We can’t get caught in the battle of you ride a black one and I ride a blue one or we’ll end up black and blue in the legal fights brought on by others. Proposals continually surface to install seat belts and air bags on our bikes. Some employers have entertained thoughts of and are denying us group medical insurance because we participate in a dangerous sport. We must stay together as a united voice to support our rights as motorcyclists.

So in addition to joining your favorite brand riders group, make sure you support motorcycle rights organizations like the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) and the Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) with your membership. Many states also have an active ABATE chapter working to preserve our rights at the state level and can also benefit by our support. These politically active groups work with our local, state and federal governments to educate our elected and appointed officials about our riding interests. They deserve and need our support with both our time and our money. They work hard for us to keep our riding free.

Yes, I, like you, think everyone should ride the same brand that I do. But to protect our rights to ride, we must band together. We can’t afford to make each other black and blue. We have enough other well-intentioned individuals willing to do that for us.

Ride Smart! Ride Safe!