” Now, as you embark on a new journey, I’d like to share this one piece of advice. Always, always remember that – adversity is not a detour. It is part of the path.
You will encounter obstacles. You will make mistakes. Be grateful for both. Your obstacles and mistakes will be your greatest teachers. And the only way to not make mistakes in this life is to do nothing, which is the biggest mistake of all.
Your challenges, if you let them, will become your greatest allies. Mountains can crush or raise you, depending on which side of the mountain you choose to stand on. All history bears out that the great, those who have changed the world, have all suffered great challenges. And, more times than not it’s precisely those challenges that, in God’s time, lead to triumph.”
– Richard Paul Evans
Welcome to a week-long series on the Iron Order M/C. A couple of points before we dive into the interview with Chapter President Black Jack from the Elkhorn Chapter. As an Independent, I wanted to go out there and meet with representatives of Iron Order to get the answers many have been asking for years about their club. I have seen them bashed (Insane Throttle has also been apart of this, you can scroll the blog to see the past articles) all over the Biker World and on the internet. But one thing has always had me thinking. “If they are so bad, then why are they a huge club now?” After all, they were only founded in 2004.
I got to sit down with -Tilt IOMC Region 4 Director and International Nomad, BlackJack President of the Elkhorn Chapter of the Iron Order, Kimber IOMC Regional 4 Nomad, and Finally Noone IOMC State Representative for Iron Order M/C Minnesota. Three of those individuals drove over 4 hours to do this interview.
Today’s article I will focus on Black Jack, President of the Elkhorn Chapter. The interview with Iron Order lasted for over 1.5 hours. We dug deep into many subjects, I will tell you none that was interviewed refused to answer any questions. In the following question and answer section of this article, I focused on some of the questions many sent to Insane Throttle. The beginnings of the club, and most important, why police officers were involved with the club.
Iron Order, like most clubs, does not give many interviews, especially on the local level. How I was able to get this interview was an old friend and brother of mine, we rode together in an official support club of the dominant club here in Chicago. When I found out that he left that club and joined Iron Order I was really intrigued, my curiosity peaked and I wanted to know why. The reason my curiosity was high was that if someone like him joined the Iron Order, what the hell was I missing? When I found out I thought I was in the Twilight Zone or some shit.
I was invited out to one of their club functions a couple months back. I accepted the invite and went out there, not because I supported Iron Order, but because I wanted to see an old brother whom I rode within a previous club. My feelings have always been, “If you’re a brother, then I really didn’t care what patch you were wearing, you still were a brother.” Before I go further, the brother achieved his diamond patch with one of the big 4, not some small wannabee 1% club, I know a lot of the keyboard warriors will start jumping when they read this, so I wanted to put it out there because as we all know, haters start the judging whenever they get the opportunity. More on the haters as the articles go on this week.
Anyways, when I arrived at the function, I was met with some pretty damn good people. Now don’t forget I was the one who over the last year was bashing them hardcore through articles that reach about 800,000 people a month worldwide. What I found going to that event, I didn’t sense the tension, everyone was just there having a good time. It was something different because as my experience was with the club I rode with, the tension was always high, even when we were in our own clubhouse. So not to take a long-winded journey, that’s how these series of articles came about. I asked Black Jack if he would answer some questions that many of my readers had, not only did he agree after receiving the go ahead from International, but he went all out and got me representatives from the Region and International.
So with that background info, we can start the series. After the interview, I was able to form a better opinion on Iron Order, I will give you those thoughts at the end of the series this week.
Part 1 – Interview with Black Jack
Insane Throttle: Iron Order has got a lot of blowback in the way that they went about starting, this sentiment is spread throughout the biker community that the Iron Order did not seek out the right channels from the Dominant clubs to wear patches or operate as a Motorcycle Club. What is your viewpoint on the blowback and hostility of others towards Iron Order because of this?
Black Jack: People will think what they think We are quite different since days past but all I care about is the future of the club
Insane Throttle: In recent years, a lot of those who ride have turned away from being involved with Motorcycle Clubs. What is your personal viewpoint on why this has been happening?
Black Jack: It’s a different world now.. a lot of this generation just doesn’t ride. And don’t value the old code – Respect, Integrity, Honesty, Loyalty, Trust, Honor
Insane Throttle: Iron Order has grown to be a large Motorcycle Club, according to your International Website, Iron Order is throughout the United States and has some overseas chapters. What do you attribute to the growth of the Iron Order? Do you dispute the fact that Iron Order “A person can get their patches and become apart of the club through the mail”?
Black Jack: I can’t say why anybody joins a club, that’s on them. I can say in this chapter it’s hard to even become a hang around. We Are a brotherhood, a family and you have to be right for the family. There’s a hang around period and a Prospect period. We have had this year alone 23 guys did not even make it hang around, 11 did make hang around and only one has been given a chance to prospect. So 1 out of 34 guys. What is great about this club is the diversity of chapters. International is only there to enforce bylaws if they are broken Other then that chapters are run by the chapters.
Insane Throttle: A lot of people these days go around and use the word “Brother” like it’s just another word or greeting, it’s become so watered down that most do not know what it means, What does the word “Brother” mean to you as it pertains to the members of Iron Order?
Black Jack: My take is there for each other no matter what, help him at their lowest point, celebrate with them at their highest point. In the world today it seems that being fake, lying and blaming others is what is considered socially acceptable. In our world you do what you say, a handshake is like signing a piece of paper and you stand together no matter what the obstacle
Insane Throttle: As I look around, your clubhouse looks just like any of those clubhouses of many of the M/C’s that I’ve visited. One of the main differences that I noticed, your atmosphere is a lot more laid back. What do you think the main difference is between the Iron Order and that of say a 1% club?
Black Jack: Every Club is different so that’s almost an impossible question to answer. I will say that we don’t care what anyone else is doing, we don’t care who’s riding by or who’s at a bar. We ride, party and have fun. that’s what its all about isn’t it
Insane Throttle: You’re the President the ElkHorn Chapter. What made you decide personally that Iron Order was right for you?
Black Jack: At this time in my life it was just the right club for me. The family aspect, the Brotherhood is unmatched in my eyes. It’s easy for everyone to talk about Brotherhood it’s not always easy to see it.
Insane Throttle has been highly critical of Iron Order in the past. The biggest question the readers and subscribers of the site have, Why does Iron Order allow men that are police officers into the club as patched members? Do you think that it blurs the lines of who you are as a biker and or patch member? Do you feel that Iron Order has been misjudged by others because police officers are allowed into your ranks?
Black Jack: We don’t care what you do for a living. We care about what kind of man you are and if you fit the brotherhood. We have set bylaws and no matter what you do for a living, you abide by those bylaws if you don’t, you’re down the road.
As I sat and interviewed all four that were present, I got the feeling of the intense sincerity that they had for their club. It was something that as men they truly believed in, that they would fight for each other if the need would ever arise. But what I found even more important, something that all of us in the biker community strive for, the brotherhood that they share. Each and every one of them described instances of how they helped out a fellow brother, in their own club or not.
Now, as we all know, each and every club is different, especially in those clubs that are large. A club with that many chapters never does things exactly the same way. From the interview, you could tell that (At least the Elkhorn Chapter) has a set of expectations for those who want to become members, I think I’m not out of line by saying that the Region under Tilt IOMC has those same standards. No one is just handed a patch, they like other clubs have a hang around period, Prospect period that one must go through for membership. In fact, as Tilt IOMC stated, most people who want a chapter in his Region can take up to 6 months to a year to establish. The Prospect period for Elkhorn is anywhere from 3 months to a Year ( About the average for an M/C).
It did seem to the Prospective of Region 4 , they have come a long way since the days of when Iron Order began. Like every club, they had a learning curve and growing pains, they learned from their mistakes and corrected them or are in the process of correcting them. As Blackjack said during the question and answer section of this first piece, “We don’t look at the past, We only want to look forward”.
In Part 2 of the interview with BlackJack, we will hear how other clubs interact with Iron Order and Iron Orders feelings towards those who bash them or have a ton of hate for them. Also you can look forward to hearing directly from those representatives I met with from International and Minnesota. It’s going to be a hell of a wild ride folks
Stay tuned for the second part of the Interview with BlackJack President of the Iron Order Elkhorn Chapter Wednesday November 15th .
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