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Motorcycle advocates blast proposed new Alabama helmet law

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by Chris Best from https://www.wkrg.com

“Singling out of one specific group is profiling and we, as motorcyclist, are well aware of this fact,” says Matthew Schroeder, State Director, Dixie ABATE of Alabama, Alabama’s only state motorcycle rights organization. He’s talking about Alabama Senate Bill-357 which would require motorcycle helmets to have reflective features for high visibility.

Part of the complaint is that this only adds to the expense of already costly safety gear. Decent helmets aren’t cheap, and those with reflective features tend to cost even more. State Senator Clyde Chambliss (R) sponsored the bill. You can read it in full here – click this.

“Mandating a requirement to add reflective material to helmets is counter productive to making riders more visible. Many riders already wear high visibility shirts and reflective jackets when riding. Many riders also having additional lighting for visibility,” said Schroeder. The Director of the Department of Public Safety would determine what qualifies as “reflective features.” The Director would then publish a list of those that qualify.

The legislation also targets feet. It would make riding or being a passenger on a bike while not wearing shoes illegal. That may present another issue, what qualifies as shoes? Does that mean it’s illegal to ride in flip flops or sandals? Or do those qualify as shoes? The law also makes it illegal for anyone to allow a child to ride without a helmet or shoes. Riding a motorcycle in Alabama without a helmet is already illegal.

The law would also make it illegal for dealers and other retailers to sell helmets in Alabama without the reflective features. That would mean riders could not buy a cheaper helmet, then add their own reflective materials. “We feel that the Senators and Representatives would be a lot more productive in regards to motorcycling , if they would pass legislation requiring a motorcycle skills test and teach motorcycle awareness in drivers education,” said Schroeder.

Bikers inside the Beltway Meeting for May 2021

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BIKERS INSIDE THE BELTWAY 2021
FLEXIBLE & MOVING FORWARD

The pandemic and the events of January 6 brought changes to meetings with members of Congress and large gatherings. The MRF has restructured Bikers inside the Beltway to comply with pandemic mandates and directives for assemblies. The 2021 Bikers inside the Beltway will take place in Washington, D.C., May 18.

“It is our right to address Congress” said MRF President Kirk Willard. “While attendees will need to take a flexible approach to scheduling meetings with their members of Congress, Bikers Inside the Beltway will take place as scheduled.”

New security restrictions necessitate that visitors to Congress establish appointments before arriving in D.C. The MRF will provide members with contact information to begin the process of setting your D.C. agenda.

Flexibility with appointments and expectations is a must. Some congressional offices will welcome in person meetings within the Capitol Complex. Other offices may seek meetings outside the official government buildings. Still others may only do a meeting over the phone or via zoom.

Bikers inside the Beltway will be dual-faceted to accommodate in-person visits to Congress plus visits to local offices.

To ensure that the mission of getting our message to Congress does not fail, here are a few items to consider:

Once infrastructure funding legislation is assigned a Senate and House number, that information will be shared.

  • Make your appointments locally or in Washington.
  • Familiarize yourself with the briefing points.
  • Confirm your appointment locally or in Washington.
  • Virtual or in person, make notes on your meeting.
  • Share your meeting notes with the MRF.

Although bill numbers have not been assigned to the infrastructure funding legislation, Congress has classified it as a high priority. Language that the MRF amended into the 2020 highway funding legislation has not changed. The MRF’s 2021 High Priority Objectives are on track to be included in the upcoming highway funding legislation.

A meeting of the MRF Board of Directors will take place on May 17 at the Embassy Suites, 1900 Diagonal Road, Alexandria, VA 22314. Rooms are available through the hotel direct line 703-684-5900 and use reference code MRF when making reservations. Hotel cut-off date May 13. Updated Flyer here.

A pre-event briefing and Q&A for visits to Congress is at 7:00 p.m., May 17, and is required for all attendees. Briefing packets and “leave behinds” will be available during the briefing.

Make appointments with your members of Congress, attend the MRF board meeting, briefing session, and Bikers inside the Beltway. Bikers inside the Beltway 2021 – flexible and moving forward.

The Doomed Bikernet Weekly News for March 25th, 2021

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There are two premises at play here. Threats of doom and control freaks. Some folks are constantly hunting for more control over you.

At one time bikers made up one of the largest activist groups in the country. We were right up there with the NRA. We fought hard for freedom to choose to wear a helmet or not. We won until a control freak (Joan Claybrook) took over the DOT and came up with the public burden theory, so she could take our freedom again. We faced an uphill battle gallantly and in many states succeeded.

I never understood the media. They supported helmet laws and taking our freedoms. But the media relies on freedom or there would be no media just government propaganda. Hell, you might also read a book I wrote in 1999, Sam Chopper Orwell. It explains what’s happing in biker style. Hang on.

You’ll see this topic pop-up numerous times in the news. It’s not about exhaust smoke and plastic containers. It’s about honesty, freedom and good times. Let’s hit the news.

It just bothers me, because we are actually living in the best of times. Sure, there’s stuff to do and improve. But we are not doomed. Let’s party or as the brothers say, “Support Good Times.”

Ride Fast and Free Forever.

–Bandit

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Barre Harley-Davidson Dealer Will Give Free Motorcycles to Those in Need

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by Sasha Goldstein from https://www.sevendaysvt.com

Last year, as people looked for new ways to enjoy the outdoors, the folks at Wilkins Harley-Davidson in Barre saw dozens of would-be riders stream through its doors.

All had a common goal: to hop on a motorcycle and escape.

“Motorcycles provide a kind of release and a way to get away from our troubles and anxieties,” said Mark Frano, the dealership’s customer experience manager. “There’s a fair amount of people who could probably use that release but don’t have the means to get on a $20,000 Harley-Davidson motorcycle.”

Intent to spread the joy of riding, the dealership came up with the Freedom for All Project. For every 50 bikes it sells this year, Wilkins will provide a free one to someone in need. The dealership is taking applications from people in northern New York, Vermont and New Hampshire who can “describe why they feel like they’re a candidate for this program,” Frano said.

“It’s definitely resonated with folks who just can’t make this happen on their own,” he added.

New riders are encouraged to apply. If chosen, they’ll be trained to ride safely at the dealership’s riding academy, which allows people to get a motorcycle endorsement on their driver’s license.

Frano said it’s a way of giving back, something the company has done since it opened its doors in 1947. Founder Harry Wilkins used to run the shop out of his Barre garage and provide free sandwiches to riders who showed up, often from distant towns. In honor of that tradition, the dealership holds a “bologna sandwich Saturday” each year, Frano said.

Giving away motorcycles adds up to a lot of bologna sandwiches. Frano estimated that the dealership sells about 300 bikes a year, meaning it would give away six in 2021. While the company traditionally participates in philanthropic efforts, such as donating money and sponsoring events, this is different, Frano said.

“This is a really personal thing for us, because it’s what we do; it’s what we love,” he said. “Hopefully it does what we’re hoping for, which is to give people a chance to get away from it all.”

Sam’s Picks for the Week of March 16th, 2021

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What do Choppers mean to you? I should know. I’ve worked with the greatest builders on the planet. I’ve built a few myself and I started in the industry because of Choppers.

Hell, I worked with the god father of the Chopper, Arlen Ness on several projects. So, what did they mean to me, when I first started to turn a wrench and built my first rat bike chopper? I was maybe 20, recently back from Vietnam, escaped the harsh family and wondered what the hell I was going to do next.

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The Official Harley-Davidson Suggestion Box

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We Want the Freedom Machine to Succeed

The Future of Harley-Davidson – The Freedom Machine must live on into the Future.

We are reaching out to readers for their suggestions for the future success of Harley-Davidson. We will collect notes and suggestions from brothers and sisters until we build a solid list of suggestions. Then we can share them with the factory.

Let’s try to stay positive, no complaints about the factory or their newest models.

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New Adventure Bikernet Weekly News for February 11, 2021

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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 Quick Throttle Magazine came on board.

Let’s hit the news. It’s going to be a good one.

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Harley-Davidson announces the “Get Out and Ride” Sweepstakes

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Harley-Davidson celebrates a New Year with 80 Prizes for the Rides ahead.

MILWAUKEE (February 8, 2021) – Harley-Davidson’s mission brings people together and helps riders experience freedom for the soul. Harley-Davidson is celebrating its mission with the “Get Out and Ride” sweepstakes. There are 80 prizes to win in honor of the 80th Anniversary of Daytona Bike Week, and one custom grand prize motorcycle to celebrate the start of a new year of riding.

“Following Harley-Davidson’s global celebration of riding at the virtual H-D 21 event, we’re excited to get riders rolling into a great year ahead,” said VP Marketing Theo Keetell. The “Get Out and Ride” Sweepstakes is Harley-Davidson’s invitation to kick off the riding season and rediscover the road.”

From February 8 to April 16, Harley-Davidson is giving riders reason to celebrate with a sweepstakes that everyone in the U.S. can participate in. Through riding-related activities and visiting your local Harley-Davidson® dealer, participants earn entries for a chance to win prizes celebrating the community and spirit of two wheels. This includes a custom 2021 Harley-Davidson® Road Glide® motorcycle and weekly drawings for 80 additional prizes.

“Get Out and Ride” Sweepstakes
Riders can earn entries by participating in the following:

  • Enter the “Get Out and Ride” Sweepstakes
  • Come back for instant win prizes throughout the campaign
  • Visit your local participating Harley-Davidson dealership
  • Demo Harley-Davidson motorcycles

The “Get Out and Ride” Sweepstakes is a perfect opportunity to demo, try-on, and experience all the new Harley-Davidson® products for 2021 including motorcycles, parts and accessories, and general merchandise.

For more information visit: https://harleydavidson.promo.eprize.com/getoutandride/

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.  A PURCHASE WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING.  LEGAL RESIDENTS OF THE 50 UNITED STATES (D.C.) 18 YEARS AND OLDER.  VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Promotion ends 4/16/21. For Official Rules, alternate method of entry, prize descriptions and odds disclosure, visit H-D.com/getoutandride.  Sponsor: Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Inc., 3700 W. Juneau Ave, Milwaukee, WI  53208.