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Capitol Hill Update from the Motorcycle Riders Foundation

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Paying Dividends

After a week away from Washington, Congress returned to town this week, and the hard work of MRF members during Bikers Inside the Beltway is starting to pay off.

In just the last two weeks, 17 Congressional offices have signed on as cosponsors to H. Res 255, the anti-motorcyclist profiling resolution. We have now brought the total number of cosponsors to 40 since the resolution was introduced at the end of March. We have surpassed the 38 cosponsors garnered in the 18 months that we worked on the previous anti-profiling resolution during the 115th Congress.

The most recent cosponsors are:

  • Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ)
  • Congressman David Schweikert (R-AZ)
  • Congressman Ralph Abraham (R-LA)
  • Congressman Mike Johnson (R-LA)
  • Congressman Jamie Raskin (D-MD)
  • Congresswoman Angie Craig (D-MN)
  • Congressman Tom Emmer (R-MN)
  • Congressman George Holding (R-NC)
  • Congresswoman Ann Kuster (D-NH)
  • Congressman Chris Pappas (D-NH)
  • Congressman Mark Amodei (R-NV)
  • Congresswoman Susie Lee (D-NV)
  • Congressman Troy Balderson (R-OH)
  • Congressman Glenn Thompson (R-PA)
  • Congressman Dusty Johnson (R-SD)
  • Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX)
  • Congressman Ron Kind (D-WI)

Additionally, in the last two weeks, five new lawmakers joined the House Motorcycle Caucus bringing the total membership up to 27.

The new caucus members:

  • Congressman Bill Posey (R-FL)
  • Congresswoman Angie Craig (D-MN)
  • Congressman Pete Stauber (R-MN)
  • Congressman Joe Wilson (R-SC)
  • Congressman Dusty Johnson (R-SD)

These new cosponsors and caucus members are a direct result of MRF members meeting with Congressional offices and asking them to stand with the motorcycle community. Our growing numbers demonstrate two things, first that our message is starting to gain traction on Capitol Hill and second that MRF members meeting with, sending letters or calling their elected officials is the most effective way to change public policy. Thank you to everyone that has answered the call.

State News – 3 and Counting…

This week the Louisiana State Senate joined their House colleagues and UNANIMOUSLY passed HB 141; a bill that requires mandatory motorcycle profiling training be included in the police training curriculum. The measure is expected to be signed into law by Governor John Bel Edwards (D) in the coming weeks. HB 141 has two key provisions:

(1) The council shall include motorcyclist profiling awareness training in the current bias recognition policing curriculum. The training shall consist of at least one-half hour of classroom or internet instruction, or a combination of classroom and internet instruction. This training shall address issues related to motorcyclist profiling and shall be provided to peace officers as defined in R.S. 40:2402(3)(a).

(2) For purposes of this Subsection, “motorcyclist profiling” shall mean the arbitrary use of the fact that an individual rides a motorcycle or wears motorcycle- related clothing or paraphernalia as a factor in deciding to stop, question, take enforcement action, arrest, or search the individual or his motorcycle or motor vehicle.

The MRF would like to congratulate all those involved in this victory for the motorcycle community.  When the bill is signed into law, Louisiana will join Washington State and Maryland as the three states with laws against the profiling of motorcyclist. Great work, Louisiana!

Your Team in D.C.  Tiffany & Rocky

The Motorcycle Riders Foundation

About Motorcycle Riders Foundation
The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) provides leadership at the federal level for states’ motorcyclists’ rights organizations as well as motorcycle clubs and individual riders. The MRF is chiefly concerned with issues at the national and international levels that impact the freedom and safety of American street motorcyclists. The MRF is committed to being a national advocate for the advancement of motorcycling and its associated lifestyle and works in conjunction with its partners to help educate elected officials and policymakers in Washington and beyond.

Last Day for AMA Member Discount Tickets

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AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Honda in less than one month away! Join us July 5-7 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, for a weekend filled with vintage racing, the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Bike Show, presented by Old Bike Barn, trials, lots of entertainment and the largest motorcycle swap meet in North America. Learn more at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com.

AMA Members receive 25 percent off a Weekend Pass and even steeper discounts on single-day passes when you order tickets in advance. The deadline to order your tickets and receive the discount is today, June 8!  Order Tickets to #AMAVMD Today! 

Stay up-to-date on schedules, entertainment, racing, bike shows and more by subscribing to AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days E-News!

EASYRIDERS CAMPOUT this Weekend!

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It’s the original biker campout from Easyriders Magazine! Come enjoy a weekend of camping, live entertainment, awesome vendors, food & beer and your classic motorcycle rally games in Bloomsburg, PA this weekend, June 7-9. Be a part of the fun – you don’t have to be a pro. Sign-up onsite to participate in our rodeo favorites from the wienie bit to the sled pulls and compete for cash and bragging rights! The first rodeo event is FREE with your weekend wristband! It’s sure to be the highlight of the summer! 18+ only. All tickets are sold at the gate.

Come join us for Bill’s 80th birthday bash and ride starting at Bill’s Old Bike Barn with procession to the Easyriders Rodeo in Bloomsburg, PA Saturday June 8. You can purchase tickets at Bill’s Old Bike Barn Saturday from 9am to11am. Tickets are limited. Starts at 9am. Ride to the Easyriders Rodeo leaves at 12:30pm. The cost is $40 per person which gets you into Bill’s 80th Birthday Bash, Entry into Bill’s Bike Museum. Bill’s Old Bike Barn is a true collection of vintage motorcycles and Americana memorabilia that you just have to see for yourself! Rhett Rotten Wall of Death, A Saturday midway pass into the Easyriders Rodeo and all the events which include: barstool races, rodeo competition, vendors, ride in bike show, food and beer, wet t-shirt contest, cornhole competition, poker crawl, kick start contest, live music by Saliva, Starve The Beast, The Bayou City Outlaw Band and South of Southern. Fire, dance and aerial performances by the Purrfect Angelz, freestyle rollers demonstrations, an Easyriders Rodeo commemorative run pin, and more!! Or come camp out for the weekend, we have lots more going on!

So jump on your ride and come party with us in Bloomsburg! It’s sure to be a great time!

Man who killed motorcyclist will have prison time reduced

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The Arizona Court of Appeals has ruled a Pima County Superior Court judge erred when he stacked the sentences of a Tucson man convicted of killing a Sahuarita woman in a DUI-related crash in 2016.

In August 2017, Judge Christopher Browning sentenced Scott Woodington to 48 years in prison. He gave Woodington 22 years for the second-degree murder of Amy Hill and a total of 26 years for two counts of aggravated assault, four counts of aggravated driving under the influence, two counts of endangerment and one count of criminal damage.

The Court of Appeals agreed with Woodington’s defense attorneys that the second-degree murder charge and the aggravated assault charges stem from the same act and thus the sentences shouldn’t be served consecutively. The judges said Woodington needs to be resentenced on the murder charge.

During Woodington’s trial, an accident reconstructionist and other experts testified Woodington was driving about 87 mph on May 2, 2015, when he struck Hill, 50, on Sahuarita Road near Alvernon Way and pushed her motorcycle several hundred feet.

Woodington had more than a dozen drinks before getting into his car, Deputy Pima County Attorney Robin Schwartz told jurors during his trial. Eleven people called 911 over the next several minutes to report a suspected drunken driver on Interstate 10.

Woodington, who has five prior DUI convictions, struck a vehicle at Interstate 10 and Rita Road, but continued on. A short time later, he came up on three motorcyclists near Sahuarita Road and Alvernon Way.

Woodington struck the bumper of Frances LaFreniere’s motorcycle, prompting her and fellow biker Jon Hone to stop. Woodington stopped briefly, then continued on, striking Hill moments later.

Schwartz said he only stopped his vehicle after his airbag deployed.

Hill had internal bleeding, a severed and broken spine, a traumatic brain injury, a collapsed lung and lacerations, Schwartz said.

Over the next 111 days, she endured surgeries and battled infections before dying of sepsis Aug. 21.

Woodington, whose most recent DUI was six months earlier, had a blood alcohol content of 0.290.

Woodington’s attorney acknowledged his client was guilty of all the DUI charges, but had asked jurors to consider convicting Woodington of criminally negligent homicide instead of second-degree murder.

In addition to serving his sentence in the Hill case, Woodington is serving a consecutive sentence of 11 years for one of his prior DUI cases.

–Kim Smith GVNews.com

–from Rogue

BikerLivesMatter.com

Californians Are Now Paying Higher Gas Taxes. Cities Are Responding by Reducing Lanes for Cars.

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After state lawmakers boosted the gas tax with a promise to improve California streets, some cities are upsetting drivers by spending millions on so-called ‘road diet’ projects that reduce the number of lanes for motor vehicles.

 

At a 2017 Riverside rally touting legislation to increase gas taxes and vehicle-license fees to boost California’s infrastructure spending, then-Gov. Jerry Brown was characteristically grandiose.

“Roads are the fundamentals of a civilization,” he said. “Whether it was the Roman Empire or the United States of America, roads are the key to a nation’s greatness.”

As someone who once spent hours driving 50 miles on a decrepit and insanely crowded third-world country’s “highways,” I can attest to the societal importance of a modern, well-maintained freeway system. But the latest news about that gas-tax hike—and the way some cities are using the cash—speaks volumes about our civilization, too. It’s great fodder for an author who wants to chronicle the decline and fall of it.

Senate Bill 1‘s supporters made clear the $5.4 billion a year in additional infrastructure spending would reduce congestion and make getting around much easier. Any normal person would think that meant building new street and highway lanes. This isn’t high-level math: Congestion is caused by too little road space for too many cars, so adding space is the key.

Normal people apparently don’t make transportation decisions. “Two years after state lawmakers boosted the gas tax with a promise to improve California streets, some cities have raised the ire of drivers by spending millions of the new dollars on ‘road diet’ projects that reduce the number and size of lanes for motor vehicles,” according to a Los Angeles Times report.

In November, a majority of California voters opposed a repeal of those gas-tax hikes. People no doubt reasoned that even if they don’t like paying so much extra at the pump, they at least will see tangible improvements in their commutes. In fairness, the tax hike has funded many construction and maintenance projects, but it’s also funded these projects that seem designed to make our awful commutes even worse. It makes no sense.

S.B. 1 is a “landmark transportation investment to rebuild California by fixing neighborhood streets, freeways and bridges in communities across California and targeting funds toward transit and congested trade and commute corridor improvements,” according to the state of California website. That’s a fair description of how its backers described the controversial plan to skeptical taxpayers.

When did anyone ever say anything about “road diets”?

Actually, the law’s fine print promised to add bike lanes and improve road safety. Not many people figured that California cities would do this by building wider, protected bicycle routes and removing the number of traffic lanes in the process. In the city of Sacramento, near where I live, officials have used this strategy. It has turned downtown thoroughfares from a crowded rush-hour mess into total, gridlocked chaos. As humorist Dave Barry would say, “I am not making this up.”

The city realized “the primary collision factor on the streets was unsafe speeds,” Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg said in that news report. “And one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to reduce the speeds is to reduce the number of travel lanes.” The report pointed to a federal study showing that road diets significantly reduce the number of car accidents.  Well, sure—it’s harder to get in an accident when you’re not moving or crawling along. The next time you’re in gridlock, remember that officials did this to make you safer. Gee, thanks a lot.

This is planned congestion—an extreme case of social engineering trumping traffic engineering. These officials, who want us to sit in traffic longer as a means to avoid accidents or frustrate us into taking the bus or rail, are using the recent tax boost to achieve these goals. Californians have been had, although many of us had issued warnings.

Officials actually admit that they do this. It was obvious, though, given increases in traffic and all those new, obtrusive bicycle lanes surrounded by pylons and delineated by white, painted warning figures and lines on the asphalt. These projects also are designed to promote “equity” by “giving people safe alternatives to cars,” as one supporter told the Times. Bicycling is a fine-enough pastime and a reasonable way to get around in cities, but replacing traffic lanes with bike lanes will only make the traffic worse.

When San Jose opened a light-rail station many years ago, transportation officials reportedly considered closing a nearby highway lane to encourage people to take rail. These road-diets are even loopier. We’ve placed transportation planning in the hands of the Congestion Lobby – officials who are so hostile to car usage that they’ll go to great lengths to coerce us to ride bikes or take their slow, dirty and generally unpleasant transit systems.

Jerry Brown had it right. Roads are indeed a key to a society’s greatness. But I’d add that any civilization that raises gas taxes and then reduces road lanes to purposefully increase traffic congestion is insane and probably living on borrowed time.

This column was first published by the Orange County Register.

Steven Greenhut is Western region director for the R Street Institute. Write to him at sgreenhut@rstreet.org.

 

Police: Give Up Your Phone Password Or Go To Jail

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POSTED BY: JON SCHUPPE

If you are ever stopped and demanded to turn over your phone’s password, do not comply. Tell the officer that he must get a legitimate court-issued warrant, and then you will comply. Always be polite, but firm. but be ready to pay the price of non-compliance.Fourth Amendment: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” ⁃ TN Editor

William Montanez is used to getting stopped by the police in Tampa, Florida, for small-time traffic and marijuana violations; it’s happened more than a dozen times. When they pulled him over last June, he didn’t try to hide his pot, telling officers, “Yeah, I smoke it, there’s a joint in the center console, you gonna arrest me for that?”

They did arrest him, not only for the marijuana but also for two small bottles they believed contained THC oil — a felony — and for having a firearm while committing that felony (they found a handgun in the glove box).

Then things got testy.

As they confiscated his two iPhones, a text message popped up on the locked screen of one of them: “OMG, did they find it?”

The officers demanded his passcodes, warning him they’d get warrants to search the cellphones. Montanez suspected that police were trying to fish for evidence of illegal activity. He also didn’t want them seeing more personal things, including intimate pictures of his girlfriend.

So he refused, and was locked up on the drug and firearms charges.

Five days later, after Montanez was bailed out of jail, a deputy from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office tracked him down, handed him the warrants and demanded the phone passcodes. Again, Montanez refused. Prosecutors went to a judge, who ordered him locked up again for contempt of court.

“I felt like they were violating me. They can’t do that,” Montanez, 25, recalled recently. “F— y’all. I ain’t done nothing wrong. They wanted to get in the phone for what?”

He paid a steep price, spending 44 days behind bars before the THC and gun charges were dropped, the contempt order got tossed and he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor pot charge. And yet he regrets nothing, because he now sees his defiance as taking a stand against the abuse of his rights.

“The world should know that what they’re doing out here is crazy,” Montanez said. The police never got into his phones.

While few would choose jail, Montanez’s decision reflects a growing resistance to law enforcement’s power to peer into Americans’ digital lives. The main portals into that activity are cellphones, which are protected from prying eyes by encryption, with passcodes the only way in.

As police now routinely seek access to people’s cellphones, privacy advocates see a dangerous erosion of Americans’ rights, with courts scrambling to keep up.

“It’s becoming harder to escape the reach of police using technology that didn’t exist before,” said Riana Pfefferkorn, the associate director of surveillance and cybersecurity at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. “And now we are in the position of trying to walk that back and stem the tide.”

 

–from Technocracy News

D-Day Bikernet Weekly News for June 6, 2019

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It Couldn’t Be Better

I’ll keep fighting for freedom and questioning authority until the end. I guess it’s my nature as just another grubby biker who loves to ride free.

The Bikernet Weekly News is sponsored in part by companies who also dig Freedom including: Cycle Source Magazine, the MRF, Las Vegas Bikefest, Iron Trader News, ChopperTown, BorntoRide.com and the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum. Most recently the Smoke Out and Quick Throttle Magazine came on board.

QUICK – JOIN THE Cantina and read the industry news – Click Here

FBI releases its file on Bigfoot

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday released a correspondence file containing the results of tests it performed on a tissue sample alleged to be from Bigfoot, also known as Sasquatch — a purported human-like creature that was sporadically reported to be roaming the wilderness in the Pacific Northwest.

The 22-page file, made public following a Freedom of Information Act request, showed that the FBI agreed to test a hair sample “attached to a tiny piece of skin” obtained and submitted by the Oregon-based Bigfoot Information Center.

The letters show the group sent the sample after a 1975 report in the “Washington Environmental Atlas” referred to tests by the FBI Laboratory “in connection with the Bigfoot phenomenon.”
The FBI kept a Bigfoot file, which was released Wednesday. (Yahoo News photo Illustration; photos: AP, Getty Images)

“Will you kindly, to set the record straight, once and for all, inform us if the FBI has examined hair which might be that of a Bigfoot; when this took place; if it did take place; what the results of the analysis were,” Peter Byrne, director of the Bigfoot Information Center, wrote in a letter to the bureau. “Please understand that our research here is serious.”

The FBI said it had no record of conducting such tests.

But in a subsequent letter addressed to Byrne, dated Dec. 15. 1976, Jay Cochran Jr., assistant director of the FBI’s Scientific and Technical Services division, told him to send the sample to the FBI Laboratory in Washington.

“The FBI Laboratory conducts examinations primarily of physical evidence for law enforcement agencies in connection with criminal investigations,” Cochran wrote. “Occasionally, on a case-by-case basis, in the interest of research and scientific inquiry, we make exceptions to this general policy. With this understanding, we will examine the hairs and tissue mentioned in your letter.”

Three months later, the FBI reported the results of its tests.

“The hairs are of deer family origin,” Cochran wrote.

Tanya Tucker Returns After 17 Years with New Album While I’m Livin’

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LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Country legend and original female outlaw Tanya Tucker returns after 17 years. Tucker’s new album, While I’m Livin’, is set for release on August 23 via Fantasy Records. Produced by Brandi Carlile and Shooter Jennings, the album marks Tucker’s first for the label and her first new material since 2002’s Tanya. Watch/share the video for the album’s debut song “The Wheels of Laredo,” directed by Myriam Santos here and pre-order While I’m Livin’ here. Additionally, Tucker and Carlile will take the stage for a performance at tonight’s CMT Awards.

“Brandi is truly out of this world. She’s talented, smart, funny, never ever slows down and has a heart of gold,” says Tucker of the collaboration. “I just love her. She was like my shadow when we were in the studio. Every time I turned around, she was there. And Shooter, I’ve known him since he was a baby. He’s the one who brought us all together. So I’m ready to get this music out there because it’s different than anything I’ve ever done.”

While I’m Livin’ is largely comprised of songs written by Carlile, the twins Tim and Phil Hanseroth and Tucker. “It’s a musical biography of sorts,” said Carlile, “about Tanya’s real life and the places she’s seen, and it’s narrated by the greatest country and western singer this side of Johnny Cash.”

“The Day My Heart Goes Still” is a reflection of Tucker’s enduring love for her late father, while “Mustang Ridge” recalls her hardscrabble childhood in central Texas. While I’m Livin’ also contains some well-chosen covers including “High Ridin’ Heroes,” a 1987 song Shooter selected that featured David Lynn Jones and his dad, Waylon Jennings, “The House That Built Me,” a track made famous by Miranda Lambert and “Hard Luck” the 1979 chestnut by country-rockers, Josefus.

In many ways, the album’s cornerstone is “Bring My Flowers Now,” the only tune that was co-written by Tucker, Carlile and the twins. The album closer, told through Carlile’s solo piano and Tucker’s plaintive vocal, speaks to the importance of showing appreciation to those we love, before it’s too late. Carlile explains, “We have so few opportunities to thank the legends that have influenced the generations of Country music singers and writers. With Tanya we have quite an opportunity because she’s young. I’m drawn to Tanya Tucker because she’s been to hell and to heaven, not to mention every square inch of Texas. She’s lived, she’s living, she’s got something to say and I’m listening.”

Born in Seminole, Texas, Tucker had her first country hit, the classic “Delta Dawn,” at the age of 13 in 1972. Since that auspicious beginning Tucker has become one of the most admired and influential artists in country music history, amassing 23 Top 40 albums and a stellar string of 56 Top 40 singles, ten of which reached the #1 spot on the Billboard country charts. Tucker’s indelible songs include some of country music’s biggest hits such as the aforementioned “Delta Dawn,” “Soon,” “Two Sparrows in a Hurricane,” “It’s a Little Too Late,” “Trouble,” “Texas (When I Die),” “If It Don’t Come Easy” and “Strong Enough To Bend,” among others. Tucker is also the recipient of numerous awards, including two CMAs, two ACMs, three CMT awards and ten GRAMMY nominations.

WHILE I’M LIVIN TRACKLIST
1. Mustang Ridge
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

2. The Wheels Of Laredo
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

3. I Don’t Owe You Anything
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

4. The Day My Heart Goes Still
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

5. High Ridin’ Heroes
(written by David Lynn Jones)

6. The House That Built Me
(written by Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin)

7. Hard Luck
(written by John C. “Pete” Bailey, David Lee Mitchell, Raymond L. Turner and Jerry Ontiberoz)

8. Rich
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

9. Seminole Wind Calling
(written by Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

10. Bring My Flowers Now
(written by Tanya Tucker, Brandi Carlile, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth)

To keep up with Tanya, visit TanyaTucker.com and follow her on InstagramTwitter and Facebook.

BIKERNET in the News

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Hey,

Don’t think I’ll have time for a Weekend Round-up today. Finished my Cycle Source Magazine Deadline this week and they are featuring a tech on our Salt Torpedo, World’s Fastest Trike Effort, in the July issue.

We check our Google Numbers for all Bikernet entities on the first of each month and we’ve noticed severe increases in traffic. What the hell does it mean? We jumped from about 70,000 total to well over 300,000 unique users from April to May. That includes big numbers from the Bikernet Blog, then Bikernet, Bikernet Trikes and Bikernet Baggers.

Hang on for more news. In the meantime I’m stuck in the Bikernet Fiberglass Prison sanding and making patterns for the last layer of fiberglass, which might be applied tomorrow. My son is in Austin, Texas checking out his new home. My grandson is in Amsterdam at a tattoo convention, and then he and his tattoo artist girlfriend, Em, will hit London and Paris before returning to LA.

Don’t forget to join the Cantina and make sure to read the latest Cantina Series Episode, Number 85. And check out the new 5-Ball Racing team van. Making modification as I write this. Hang on for more reports.

–Bandit