By James “Hollywood” Macecari
The age of individualism is upon us. Gone are the days bikers felt they needed to belong to an MC are over. The current state of the motorcycle scene, many bikers are content on being independent. Motorcycle Clubs were popular all the way up to a few years ago. What has changed?
It’s fascinating on how the scene has changed, especially it’s outlook on motorcycle clubs. Many people have access to the Internet now, more than ever before. I believe that press the clubs are receiving, combined with protocol, clubs have turned a good percentage of bikers off. Actually, so many people are now supporting Law Enforcement MC’s in great numbers, more so than anyone can remember.
What is this saying about how motorcycle clubs are conducting themselves? To put it plainly, they are their own worst enemy. I see it daily because I cover the news, but to someone who only casually checks in on the news, they are disgusted at what they see. I always see the back and forth in the discussion threads Insane Throttle has concerning the competing views. Those competing views are becoming more lopsided against motorcycle clubs each and every day.
Are the clubs listening to what’s going on in the scene? Nope! This is because they are closed off from the rest of the scene. They go by what they believe in and everyone else doesn’t matter. This thinking is going to be the downfall of many clubs. Once you lose the support of people you need, you’re most likely not going to succeed in causes that are important to you.
EXAMPLE- RIDING CLUBS NEED TO GET A BLESSING?
I get this one all the time, so why not address it from those who want to know my viewpoints. Many people are tired of the protocol, this is why many are just forming riding clubs. People no longer want to be involved with the politics of the motorcycle club scene. All people want to do is ride and not have to choose a side.
“For the life of me I don’t understand why another MC would want to get involved with trying to mess with a riding club.” (Insane Throttle Subscriber.)
My personal opinion on the matter is simple, riding clubs fit most people’s personality. The type of rider has changed, evolved if you will. Most people have too much to risk and too many responsibilities to become involved in all the politics of the MC world. When a motorcycle club tries to push up against riding clubs all they do is run to the other side. The other side, meaning the LEMC clubs. Worst yet, the motorcycle clubs lose an ally in their fight against motorcycle club profiling.
Why I refuse to cover motorcycle club protocol
When Insane Throttle first started out, I would lean heavily on the side of motorcycle clubs. I would also talk about motorcycle club protocol. As everyone knows this isn’t the case any longer. For one, I left the motorcycle club scene behind. Secondly, the MC scene isn’t for me any more. Sure, I’ll cover the biker news, but that’s the extent I will have anything to do with motorcycle clubs.
As I got older and a little more wiser, I saw the direction the club scene was going and didn’t like it. Simple protocols that were established decades ago were being changed left and right. Protocol now depends on who’s in charge and how they want to see things done. This ever changing philosophy has turned many people off.
With this is mind, why would I want to cover it? If it’s ever changing then why even try to keep up with it?
When it comes to protocol and riding clubs. Motorcycle Clubs shouldn’t be messing with them. For one, riding clubs are the closest you will get to the traditional scene. Most motorcycle clubs were formed out of racing teams. Well, riding clubs pre-date even racing teams. Riding clubs were initially formed by the manufactures in order to get ridership. A question to consider then, what right does a motorcycle club have, to try and dictate to a riding club? Do motorcycle clubs dictate to Harley Owners Group? How about the Indians Rider Group? I don’t believe so unless something has changed, which I wouldn’t doubt in these times.
Hollywood, I have a question- Does MC Protocol dictate to the American Motorcycle Association? (Insane Throttle Subscriber.)
Again, the answer is unknown. Protocol has changed so damn much, I don’t even think the clubs know anymore. The protocol I knew, motorcycle clubs never had anything to do with the AMA chartered clubs. AMA chartered clubs were something entirely different, not to mention the fact most MC’s want nothing to do with the AMA.
I can see a motorcycle club getting involved with an AMA club if they were wearing rockers. But if the AMA club is following tradition and only using the 1 pc patch there shouldn’t be a problem. After all, it was the MC’s who changed their use of the 1 pc patch to the 3 pc patch.Why? Because it was to set their club apart from AMA. My personal opinion is clubs just set themselves up when they mess with an AMA club. Most involved in the AMA clubs will just call the cops, something most MC’s should already know, so why risk their membership?
Why are you always recommending Riding Clubs?
Simple, most people do not have the time and commitment to join a motorcycle club, so why turn them on to one? Why should I steer someone in that direction if I know most people can’t handle the responsibility? I’m actually a big supporter of the AMA. I like their benefits and I like they are involved in biker rights and promote riding activities. I’ll be the first one to say I would recommend an AMA Chartered club over any of the others. This is something I’ve said time and time again. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that I recommend those clubs.
I always believe in taking a step back and looking at things from all viewpoints. The viewpoint I’m seeing now is people are fed up with motorcycle clubs and are trying to find an alternative. How does that affect the scene? I don’t know! One thing is for sure, people are not behind clubs as much as they used to be.
What would you say the ratio is when it comes to those who choose Riding Clubs over Motorcycle Clubs?
To be honest, it would have to be a 70-30 ratio. Again, people no longer feel the need to be a part of a Motorcycle Club. Most people want to live the lifestyle in the traditional way. Like I mentioned before, the traditional way had to do with riding clubs and partying on the weekends. During the week, people work and spend time with family. If something comes up on the weekend it’s no harm no foul.
I personally like the traditional lifestyle. I like to be able to be able to do my own thing. I’ve done the looking over my shoulder crap and all the tension that comes with clubs. I’ve never been happier than I’m now. I wouldn’t change it for anything!
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