By James “Hollywood” Macecari
Figured it was time that we all have an open and honest debate on what’s going on with the motorcycle club scene. Insane Throttle has dedicated a huge part of it’s editorials and coverage to what is going on in the motorcycle club scene because that is usually the gauge on what is happening on the streets.Yes, there is the independent and riding club scene, but it is the club scene that usually sets the status on the way the government looks upon bikers as a whole. It’s been like that forever, crap since the late 1970’s when being a biker wasn’t cool.
Let’s face facts. It was the members of motorcycle clubs that Harley Davidson based their whole business around in the early days. That “Outlaw Image” being “Free”. Anyone who says different really should learn their history. The boys in the 60’s and 70’s had to put up with unlawful stops by every Leo they ever came across. Most served time for a lot of rights that ordinary bikers enjoy today.
As I was writing the editorial on all the Ex-Bandido snitches coming forward to testify against Pike and Portillo, I found myself a little confused. I knew that the club scene has undergone a lot of changes since I left. But damn, never thought it would’ve changed so much. Yea, there was the great biker wars of the 1990’s. One that lit Chicago in a blaze. But after that settled down people started to understand that anything that broke out would bring the FEDS down in a heartbeat. It basically became the norm for one club to stay on their side of the sandbox and the other on theirs.
Fast forward to 2018 and it seems like the 1990’s all over again with a whole different set of players. With the old timers starting to retire and leaving the scene. A whole different type of biker has started to emerge on the club scene. No longer is it about preserving the brotherhood and territory the chapter was in. It’s starting to emerge like a full blown gangster lifestyle for some. Guys joining clubs just for the fact of what kind of status they can get to make money.
One of the best M/C set-ups I think that was ever started was the Charter system. Basically it was each individual charter was in charge of itself. Yea they would send representatives to a regional or national meeting, but the charter was always in charge of making it’s own decisions. Unlike the Chapter system in which there was always a chain of command. A Charter system was actually brilliant because no single person or persons could be held responsible for some other idiots actions across the country under RICO. I bet a lot of M/C’s right now wish they had that kind of set-up right now with all the problems happening out there in the scene. RICO is abound with 3 of the big 5 currently facing those types of cases in one form or another.
Besides Insane Throttle, I also contribute and do interviews overseas. Especially Australia, Oz as I often refer to it. The club scene is very different over in Australia. Lot’s of the M/C’s allow in members without any motorcycles. The attitudes of “Bikies” as they are called over there are a lot different than bikers here in the states. In Oz. It’s pretty much true, guys over there are bringing down the heat because a lot of them are involved in some hardcore organized crime. It’s a whole different culture over there. They basically mixed the biker culture and Costra Nostra all into one. For that, normal everyday bikers are paying the price because of the actions of some of those clubs. “Bikie Laws” target everyday bikers, including people who are just members of regular riding clubs like “HOG.” There is no longer any separation from regular bikers and bikers in those clubs. I suggest visiting our International Site. See some of the stuff the clubs over there are involved in.
Right now many out there say that none of those laws they have will ever be enacted here in the states. Well, I beg to differ because some of the ground work is already started. Right now you will see private establishments putting up signs “No Colors”. Some of these establishments, like those in Daytona and Sturgis have been threatened by police authorities if they cater to club members. They risk having their liquor license revoked. This past Daytona Bike Week we had a member of the Volusia County Sheriff openly call some clubs Domestic Terrorist.
- Volusia County sheriff said police will come down on them “like white on rice” if they break the law
Right now the Trump Administration is openly going after members of MS-13. It’s a case that can be a predicate of going after 1%er clubs. It was mentioned when the chapter of Mongols got into RICO trouble earlier this year. Honestly, the clubs are not helping themselves out in all this when charges of Murder, Dealing and all other kinds of hard crimes are being brought up against them. To be honest on my end, that’s some gangster shit right there. Nothing about belonging to a club was based on those types of activities. If someone had to go down it was always in self defense. Yea, guys made money. Crap I use to run a escort business so it is what it is. But we never got into all the stuff that some members of clubs are getting into now a days because we knew it would hurt the club and brotherhood as a whole.
Once money is entered into the equation of a motorcycle club, it usually brings down the chapter or motorcycle club as a whole. That is why it was taboo back in my day to get into any of the stuff some club members seem to be finding their way into now. If you honestly take a look at some of the stuff people get into now a days I really can’t see the profit in all of it. Unless your Antonio Joseph Accardo who never spent one day in prison. The risk to rewards of the black market are slim to none these days. Yea, you make some windfalls in the beginning. But in the end you eventually get busted unless you were smart enough to get out at the right time or lucky enough not to get caught up in a Fed tape. So if you don’t get away with the racket, you have lawyer fees through the roof and then the time behind bars . Not much of a profit. So why take the risks in the first place?
I think the question clubs are going to have to start asking themselves .Is the brotherhood more important than the man who wears the patch? What do I mean by that? If one of the members is doing something that can bring down the whole club, will they act by getting rid of that member or will they let them take down the club by the activities they are doing? The 1970’s , 80’s and 90’s are gone. Technology and the Feds will always win in the long run. It’s a plain and simple truth we see playing out on the streets everyday. They have the resources and patience to take down anyone they want too. This is the very reason why more and more people are calling for clubs to work out their differences. If they don’t, it’s just going to be worse on clubs and bikers as a whole.
As the title of this article states, it’s time for an open and honest discussion on the state of the motorcycle club scene. From my perspective I always try to support every club out there. Many out there will support one club or another, which is cool, way it’s always been. But here on Insane Throttle we support all clubs equally, the premise for men to gather with their brothers, wear the patches they choose to wear without anyone discriminating against them or profiling them because of those patches. That’s the support we try and give them when we seen things out in the media that tries to make a whole club responsible for actions of just a few.
Insane Throttle has been labeled a propaganda machine by State and Federal Authorities because we speak up on behalf of Motorcycle Clubs. Well, we all know that’s furthest from the truth because we call out everyone who steps on their dicks. Why? Because working in the industry we do here at Insane Throttle, we see exactly what the government is up too when it comes to 1%er clubs. They are out there to systematically destroy them by whatever means they can. Most motorcycle clubs do not have the platform to fight back. So Insane Throttle does it through information the general public would never hear about in the mainstream media.
It’s funny. Insane Throttle started off as a one-man blog and has grown to an international platform for everything biker. It’s went from a one man show to a platform for various freelance writers, an audio podcast that is a huge success and finally growing into a video platform. We are not stopping there. We are hitting the streets bringing event coverage, interviews with mover and shakers in the biker community as well as a new organization that is being started by Peter “Big Pete” James. A true coalition of clubs, independents and those who wish to change the way things are happening out there on the streets. As Pete would say “Organize”. If there is one thing that we seen down in Texas when bikers unite, we get things done.
With that said. Clubs have to start giving us some help. We love supporting you all but can’t do it when club members are running around out there acting a fool. How long do you actually think the “We are an M/C and not a gang” line is really going to play out when you have guys popped on murder charges and running drug rings around the country? Those who are on the streets or have been on the streets know exactly what is going down. But the general public sees things only one way. What is being put out there in front of them by the media. And we all know who the media get’s their source information from. They see a bunch of cops on T.V or District Attorneys at a podium giving a speech on the indictments against club members. That is what sticks in their heads. We all know that if someone is found not-guilty, it’s never reported. If it is – it’s buried in some back page of the newspaper no one ever reads. So John Q public is left with the initial impression of motorcycle clubs from what they seen earlier with the indictments being read off.
We know we will get the haters coming out screaming and yelling “Motorcycle Clubs are not Gangs.” Or the famous “The cops and Feds set them up.” To those kind of people there is never any reality. It’s all just a conspiracy theory. To them I say “Go grab your tin foil hat’s and wait for the second coming of ancient aliens.” Those of us who are based in reality can identify the problem and try to get the word out there in hopes of reaching someone that can fix it.
For those actually based in reality. We know a number of factors are starting to play out in the biker scene that could effect the viability of 3 pc patch clubs in the next 10-15 years. Motorcycle sales are WAY down. All the major manufacturing companies are in a world of shit right now. The younger generation isn’t getting involved like those generations before them. This younger generation has a whole other set of priorities.They look at 3 pc biker clubs as “Old Man Clubs”. Most are into the rocket scene and have no use to go around and fight over turf . When was the last time you seen any of these rocket clubs blow up someone Else’s clubhouse or gun down someone from another club? They usually settle their beefs on a 1/4 mile stretch of street and $500.00 bucks. Maybe it is time to stop talking about “Old School” and actually learn from those in the “New School.”
Insane Throttle Facebook Question of the Day – Is it time for Motorcycle Clubs to start thinking of the future and come together for peace?
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