I had planned to write about the Calgary Motorcycle Show and what a great time I had, that will have to wait for the newspaper now. If you subscribe to the Busted Knuckle Chronicles you will be able to read all about it. If not - you'll have to wait until next week when the paper is made available to all members of our site. (Depending on tomorrow's news feeds I may yet give you a sneak peak of what I got to see and do!)

Today I want to talk about the shooting of Avid Motorcyclist & Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and the Saddletramps in the USA.

Why did young Jared Lee Loughner, (22 years old) target Giffords for assassination? No one really knows - and they may never know. He was obviously troubled and angry, that's all we know right now.

The congresswoman has been the target of vandalism in the past, and although by many accounts she is considered a moderate Democrat, some of her positions on various topics have earned the wrath of some people.

Pima County Sheriff, Clarence Dupnik is exceedingly upset and very vocal about his feelings:
The sheriff blamed the vitriolic political rhetoric that has consumed the country, much of it centered in Arizona. "When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous," he said. "And unfortunately, Arizona, I think, has become the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry."(From the Huffington Post)

It appears that the ads of various politicians including Sarah Palin and Jesse Kelly have become so toxic and promote violence with guns and yet, these politicians do not seem to see the connection between their attack ads featuring the cross hairs of a gun pointing at Giffords Office or asking voters to point an M-16 rifle at her office...and the shooting of Giffords -I am dismayed - as I am sure many Americans are, that a troubled young man was allowed to go undiagnosed because of a failing health and metal health system, was allowed to legally purchase a weapon - but I am far more dismayed at the way these politicians in the USA talk about each other & the horrible attack advertising that is allowed to go on.

 In my humble opinion - far too many of the politicians south of the border are radicals and equally as scary as any terrorist might be - in fact to me they are scarier because they hold positions of power and authority and appear to have no conscience, morals or sense of right and wrong.

My heart goes out to the family and friends of the congresswoman, her constituents who voted for her and most of all to the United States of America - You are a country in crisis, you appear to have lost your moral compass - at least a good number of your politicians appear to have - I am scared for you. You are rapidly loosing the respect of many countries in the world because of the actions of your politicians and tragedies like this one place emphasis on the ills of your political climate the way nothing else can.

My heart also goes out to the rest of the victims and their families in this incident. Why a nine year old girl had to perish for bad politics - well - what can I say - it is horrifying and tragic.

Also in the US - the Saddletramps are making the news again - but this time for a triumph of spirit.

Not long ago, a vehicle killed 4 members of this riding club and now they are, as part of their own healing, reaching out to a family of a toddler named Izaiah - back in October, the toddler and his grandfather were out for a walk when they were hit by a car driven by a teenager driving drunk.
Izaiah is now blind and paralyzed from the waist down. This riding club has lost so much and yet is finding so much by reaching out and giving back - My hats off to you - in my eyes and heart - you are heroes!

I would love for your thoughts and feedback on these contentious and tender issues - please join the discussion on our fan page: Belt Drive Betty  & The Busted Knuckle Chronicles, in our forums on or right here in my blog.

Our Beat the PMS Blues Show 'n' Shine has 116 pictures in it - and while that is a great number - my doctor (mechanic) says that if I am to see a full recovery from the dis-ease called PMS, I will need more medication!!!

If you can help out by entering our Beat the PMS Blues on line Show 'n' Shine - PLEASE - I need some relief!

For the rest of the news of the day - please visit!

Belt Drive Betty
Editor & Rider

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