I would like to draw your attention to a situation that took place in the UK, not unlike the issue here in Canada (Ontario specifically) where erroneous stats and comments - if allowed to stand, would have effectively seen motorcycles banned from certain roadways in the UK. In the case of Ontario, an MPP is trying to ban kids 14 and under from being passengers on motorcycles by using false and erroneous stats to back up her claims.

Without public watch dogs, people who are willing to shed light on issues that are portrayed with wrong or erroneous statistics and information or stats taken completely out of context; dumb, exclusionary and thoughtless laws can be passed into law on an unsuspecting public.

MCN Magazine stepped up and contacted the ACPO and demanded proper research and wording and they got the retraction that was needed to protect the rights of motorcyclists.

I urge you to read the article. Then I urge you to look at the situation in Ontario. They are in many ways identical. The difference here is that Helena Jaczek will not talk about the erroneous information that she is trying to pass off as legitimate and is trying to pull the wool over people's eyes with. Nor will she correct her information.

Our community is under siege - why?
A number of things factor into these attacks.

There are those who have had bad experiences with motorcycles and or riders.
There are those who buy in to the main stream media's portrayals of our community as being comprised entirely of bad guys.
The police services tend to single out our community for special negative attention.
Then there are those within our community who do a lot to foster the negative attitudes of others.

In Edmonton and other major centres like New York, loud pipes are a huge issue.

There are many in our community who have a total lack of regard for their fellow human being.

They just love to see how many car alarms they can get going, how many heads they can make turn and how many windows they can rattle. They love their ground pounders sound and think everyone else should too.

It is because of these selfish and thoughtless individuals that eventually, legislation will come down that will make it so you can't modify your motorcycle's exhaust.

I know that there are times when being able to crack open your throttle in urban traffic that you can avoid a collision by getting the attention of the driver who is trying to come in to your lane.
Motorcycle horns are notoriously lame and newer vehicles are increasingly sound resistant inside, so unless the driver has a window open, the loud pipes save lives theory is as erroneous as some politicians stats.

The truth is there is only ONE way for this community to not have their freedoms legislated out of existence. RESPECT.

When you go through a hospital zone or residential area use some consideration with that right hand. When riding in a business area remember that people are trying to do business and your unnecessary "Noise" makes concentrating on the task at hand tough, sometimes impossible.

Ride your motorcycle because you love it, not because it makes other people notice you. Your motorcycle should NOT be a fashion statement but a lifestyle - the true "Biker" rides because they love wind therapy. The commuter rides to save money and is seldom interested in anything other than that.

I have zero empathy for those who ride their machines to get attention unless of course they are on a track. Then I have nothing but admiration for their skill.

No, I am not a supporter or proponent for the disrespectful.

If you are riding like a jerk - you are probably the same jerk that I curse at who drives by my house at 10 pm with the boom box in your car going so loudly that the base can be heard for blocks and is rattling the windows in my house.

You are probably the same jerk who puts headers on his diesel truck that make it sound like the semi that is running through town using his Jacobs brake because he is too interested in having people look at him and think he's special because he drives a BIG truck.

An ego maniac is an ego maniac no matter what conveyance they are in command of.

I bet if you went to their place of employ and talked to the boss, he'd shed some light on the nature of that person, very seldom do attention seekers only seek attention on the roadways.

Yesterday I asked a question on how we could all learn to live together and because of a readers response of "Until we learn to love each other..." it hit me.

R E S P E C T - (From Wikipedia) Respect is esteem for, or a sense of the worth or excellence of, a person, a personal quality, ability, or a manifestation of a personal quality or ability. It is sometimes, but should not be, confused with loyalty or fear for a person.

C O N S I D E R A T I O N - (From Mirriam - Webster's Dictionary) - #3: thoughtful and sympathetic regard

These two words not only appear to be lacking in the vocabularies of some persons, they do not have any comprehension of what they really mean.

The attention seeking mentality is not exclusive to the community of motorcycle riders.
Where ever you find people, you will find selfish, self absorbed and thoughtless individuals.

I believe that with the proper use of common sense (which appears not to be too common at all) and a little bit of respect and consideration, one can ride a motorcycle that has a loud pipe or thunder header on it and be "quiet".

I believe that if thoughtful consideration was given by each person as the the effects their behaviour is having on another we could curb a lot of legislation.

Will that happen? It's doubtful. We as a society care more about what our individual feelings and needs are and only once our lives have negatively been impacted by an action do we appear to learn anything about respect and consideration.

"Walk a mile in my shoes"
(From Merriam -Webster's Dictionary) 2: the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner ; also : the capacity for this

The only ones who can change the perceptions of our community is US.

One person at a time we have to decide to be more thoughtful and considerate, more respectful and empathetic.

And that's my two bits worth today.

Stay safe and warm...

Belt Drive Betty

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  1. And here I was naively thinking that George Ornwell's "Big Brother is watching" was just fiction...apparently not. It was true.
    Makes me wonder where we're all heading...these are not easy times, everyone is suffering due to the economy, stupid politics, uncaring people, etc... but if you take my BIKE AWAY...there is no telling what might happen to you. All I can say...God help anyone who tries to take my iron horse away for he don't know what he's doing.
    Forgive them not father...for they are just plain stupid....!!!