Motorcycles are invisible. Those of us that ride all know this.
Almost daily, drivers in cages (slang for car or truck) pull out in front of us, edge us out of our lanes, cut us off, flip us off, throw things at us, and so on.
Inattentive cage drivers are the single greatest danger we face. The toll is horrible, and it won’t ever get any better because the consequences to the cage driver for the death or injury of a motorcyclist are almost non-existent.
And dear reader, if you’re not a rider, before you go off on us about how we just don’t get it, or understand the distractions of driving a cage…you need to remember…most of us DO own and frequently drive cages…and we ARE aware of motorcyclists. Oh, and please don’t bother to point out that group of crotch-rocket riders that zipped by you on the freeway one day…there are 1000 riders for every one of those guys…and we think they’re idiots too.
It’s really not all that hard not to kill us.
But…as motorcyclists…we are invisible. We know this.
We are invisible in other ways as well, as was unequivocally and nationally pointed out yesterday.
See, multiple 10’s of thousands of motorcyclists…perhaps several HUNDRED thousand, from all over the nation, converged on Washington DC yesterday (September 11) to remember those killed on the day of the attacks and to honor those that have fought in the wars since. It was also a peaceful protest to counter a “Million Muslim March” (which turned out to be a “23 Muslim March”) that had been deliberately and provocatively scheduled on the anniversary of the deadliest terrorist attack in US history.
Motorcyclists streamed into our capital from all directions for hours and hours, flooding the beltway and area streets with a rumbling sea of gleaming chrome and black leather. Denied a permit to assemble (we need a permit to assemble?), and denied an escort/ride through permit, the massive sea of motorcyclists peacefully made their way through the city to take a message to our leaders. They endured red-tape, police blockades, searches, and harassment, simply trying to peacefully ride the streets of our capital as patriotic Americans.
The event was monumental. The numbers of motorcycles unprecedented. The message was clear.
…and the message was lost.
It got scarce news coverage. None on the networks, almost none in the mainstream web-o-sphere, and didn’t even rate a sidebar in my local newspaper.
Hundreds of thousands of citizens peacefully assemble and it’s completely ignored. That…in and of itself…is a very clear message from our government to us.
Is it because we’re motorcyclists?
A fringe you say? Fringe? Hundreds of thousands is a fringe? Who do you think we are?
Yes, we’re motorcyclists. But we’re also plumbers, electricians, fast food workers, construction workers, engineers, writers, police officers, doctors, professionals, firefighters, young, old, military, retired, and pretty much anything else you can possibly think of.
Heard that expression, “We the people”?
In short, we are Americans. We have a voice. Government, and for some reason, the media, chose to ignore it. Both have always held their own agendas…but since when have they aligned so closely? Our free press was one of the reasons we were the greatest nation on earth. Today, I am ashamed of it. I’m ashamed of our government too.
Yes, we’re motorcyclists. We are invisible. And we know this…we very often pay a horrible price for that fact.
But we’re Americans too, and that you’d better stop ignoring.
I’ll see you on the road…and I’ll see you at the polls.
Will you see me?