I believe this to be an excellent question for a debate. Most everything associated with the biker culture comes back with individuals dressed in all leather riding a Harley Davidson. I personally believe that to be a false image in modern times. Back in the day Harley Davidson was the symbol of being Made in America. Now a days that is one of the biggest falsehoods. Harley Davidson is no longer a full American Made Bike. If anyone visits the factory you would see a ghost town. They are now assembling engine components in India, China, Mexico. How is that an all American made Scooter? Harley Davidson has built it’s brand enough where it has everyone fooled into thinking that’s what makes a biker.
In this writers thinking a scoot is not the issue. The biker is made by who the man is, what he is can be determined by his actions and words. Not some scooter he rides. A motorcycle does not know how to get to a brother when he is in need. A scooter is not there beside you when you have 3 guys in a bar fight trying to beat the hell outta you. The motorcycle is the symbol in which all bikers have a common purpose. A biker is the man you have standing in front of you offering his assistance when needed without any questions asked.
I find in quiet funny when going out to rallies and other events you hear all those who have Harley’s making fun out of those with the Jap Bikes. I often can’t help myself to go up to one of those Rubs and say” Your making fun outta that Honda Shadow over there but did you know that it’s actually more American Made then that Harley you only bring out on the weekends?” They look at me in amazement. It’s true though the Honda Motorcycle is made in Georgia. Yep American made guys. See the Japanese it’s bad to say built a better running and solid bike then what the company is putting out. The company has decided since it has all those Rubs out there they don’t need your business. Prices are outrageous for the product they are putting out and will only stay that way because us idiots keep paying for the name that has put us out on the curb.
If you look at Jap bikes you will see attention to detail, better running product and prices the common man can afford. The Honda Shadow is a great example. It is a very nice looking ride and is water cooled. It’s priced where everyone could afford it if they wanted too. Honda is coming out with some good aftermarket parts to spruce it up. I once seen a Honda Shadow with Ape Hangers, lowered, white walls and powder coat that would make any Harley look bad. The biggest think I think the Japs have over Harley is the reliability factor. Reliability when your going cross country is something that is needed in the scooter.
The point of the story here is you really need to think about what makes someone a biker. Looking around at rallies if your new too them everyone looks the same. But for those that have been around the scene can tell you who is the real thing and who is not. Anyone can get the leathers and Harley and act the part from watching Sons of Anarchy. Look closer then just pure image that person is giving off. A Harley doesn’t make the biker, a biker is made by his heart. Remember also the next time if one of your friends works two jobs and can only afford that Honda to ride, remember to stand up for the brother when assholes want to make fun of his ride because it’s a Honda or Yamaha. Look deep into that individual and see if you see someone that is true or just acting the part because he has that 20,000 Harley.