Today Campbell Newman announced that his government would look at rescinding the Anti Bikie Laws in 2016.  According to the article from Yahoo News 7, Newman claims that was the plan all along.

Begin Quote: "Premier Campbell Newman on Tuesday said his government intended to repeal tough legislation targeting outlaw motorcycle gangs after a three-year review." End Quote

Also out of Queensland comes an article from a former senior police officer turned lawyer, who recommends that motorcyclists videotape their encounters with police as it puts them in a much better position for a half decent stop.

Begin Quote" Adam Macgill said video evidence would show alleged targeting of innocent riders was “not a figment of these people's imaginations”, following the case of a Wynnum motorcyclist whose encounter with police has been viewed more than 487,000 times on YouTube.....He (Macgill) told Fairfax Media it was unlikely motorcyclists pulling out cameras would reduce the chances of being stopped by police, but “if you know you're on video, you play cricket with a straighter bat”.
End Quote.

Australia is the only democratic country in the world that does not have a Charter of Freedoms and Rights and as a result, there is very little for protection for the average rider from the anti bike laws.

If it really was the plan of Queensland Government to repeal the laws after the three-year review, why has he waited until now to announce that?  Did the YouTube video from the rider who was stopped over 21 times have anything to do with Newman making that announcement? I guess we'll never know.  Some positions simply can't be defended and harassment like the rider in the video has experienced is one of those.

By making that announcement, I wonder if Newman is hoping that people will look at the Anti Bikie laws and think - Short term pain for long term gain.  What do you think?  I'd dearly love to know.

Also in the news today, comes word of a massive rally in California at the state capitol.
The Motorcycle Rider Unification Rally was held to protest the diminishing of freedoms and rights by motorcyclists as well as the NHSTA's push for conspicuous clothing among other things. The riders gathered at the rally represented every kind of rider from Hells Angels and outlaws to the independent.  Every race, every brand and pretty much every kind of patch was on hand.

These people are defending their right to ride, to be a part of the motorcycle community and to do so peacefully.

It would sure be nice to see Canadian bikers get together in this fashion to protect our rights and freedoms that are diminishing just as fast here, as they are south of the border.  
I wonder if I will live long enough to see that become a reality.

There is also an article on a man who is now doing jail time over a little ride he took with his son.
The father took his 22-month-old son for a motorcycle ride and coming around a corner lost control. Both of them went flying about 50 feet, neither of them was wearing a helmet, according to the police the man panicked and locked up his front brake.  The child died as a result of head injury and the man was charged with aggravated child abuse among other things.

According to the article Moore defended his actions - Begin Quote: "Moore testified he'd taken his toddler and older sons for dozens of rides without trouble." End Quote
The man was sentenced to one year in jail. 

Where do you stand on this issue, what do you think of his defense?  Should he be in jail?

So here's where things stand with my defense:
  • My lawyer has filed my statement of defense in the Sturgis North, Ray Sasseville, Joan Hansen lawsuit.  
  • Ali has added my statement of defense documents to the Belt Drive Betty defense page.  
  • Because of the support of this community, I have rounded the first corner in what could prove to be a lengthy court battle.  I say lengthy because the lawyer from the other side has been replaced by Ray until a new lawyer comes on board.

Not only has it been a very humbling experience to have to ask this community for help, but it was also very humbling to talk to my banker and to be reassured that this situation would not affect my business loan. When she read the lawsuit document, she couldn't believe that a lawyer would actually file this kind of lawsuit. 

Because 4 of us are sharing the same lawyer, I have been told that a realistic goal for my defense fund would be $15-$20,000 if this drags out at all. 

These people have nothing to stand on, the lawsuit against me is groundless, frivolous, a nuisance, an enormous drain on time and resources - but I have to defend myself and go through this exercise.  

I'd counter sue if there was actually a hope of collecting, but based on the Michael Smith win, I won't bother. I fear I would just be throwing more good money down the tubes. 

I am looking forward to my day in court though. The fight was brought to me and I won't back down and because of you, I don't have to.

From what I read on the Vancouver Motorcycle show website, it's a good thing that I have volunteers running my booth in Vancouver, as those who are suing me will be there.

To those who have already donated to the Belt Drive Betty defense fund, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart.  I still have a ways to go, but with your help I know I'll get there.

To those thinking about donating, I ask you to consider either subscribing to our newspaper or advertising with us if you are a rider who owns a business.  When you advertise with us, you help the Busted knuckle Chronicles to spread the news farther a field. All the events and charities win, the riding community wins and so do the businesses of our community.  I really like win-win-win situations. I really dislike taking donations - I deeply appreciate them, but there's a bit of pride swallowing involved that just doesn't sit right.  I hope you understand what I mean...

I have been thinking about what to do should I find myself with extra money that is not used to defend myself.  

My question to all of you is, what do I do if I find that more money to support the newspaper and myself comes in than I need? 

I have to declare all donations as income and pay tax on it, so how should I handle this situation do you think. It's purely hypothetical at this point, but I'd rather be proactive and have a plan in mind.

Your ideas would be greatly appreciated.

In closing I want to thank the CVFR (Canadian Veteran Freedom Riders) of Calgary for doing such a great job of running my booth for me so I could stay in Grande Prairie and deal with everything that is on my plate. I needed a break from all of the work that goes into the shows. Last years aggressive riding season coupled with some bad luck like a bike wreck has taken a toll and I need to nurture myself and my family.  This coming weekend in Edmonton, the Northeastern Alberta Motorcycle Tourism Association is running the booth and I know they too will do a great job too. I'll be there on Friday filming for season 2 of "Ride Like a Local" on Eastlink TV. I have to hightail it right back to Grande Prairie so that I can build the newspaper so I'll only be there the one day.

The gang from the Cumberland Motorcycle Round Up and my old friend Bill Braham will be running the Vancouver booth for me. Stop in and give these volunteers a pat on the back for me please!

Without the love and support of this community I could not continue to do the work that I love so much - promoting and supporting the riding community - I love you guys.  THANK YOU.

That's what's fit to print today.
Stay safe and warm - oh and Air Canada, thanks for the apology over the service dog issue. A little late, but better than not at all.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

Belt Drive Betty,
Editor & Rider

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