Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Canadian Journalist Writes that Motorcyclists are "Idiotic"

Over at Motorcyclebloggers.com Retrorider has written an article about a Canadian journalist. This Canadian journalist, Earl McRae, has decided that all motorcyclists are and the following is excerpted from his article:
"In my opinion, only idiots drive motorcycles," "While to me motorcyclists are recklessness-dating idiots flirting with death..," "What got me thinking again of motorcyclists as idiots..," "..idiotically wasn't wearing..," "..he idiotically chose not to..," "..he idiotically wasn't required to," "..that idiotically doesn't have..," "..his idiot thinking..," "..motorcycle idiots nationally..," "..idiotically take macho delight..," "..idiotically take macho delight..," "..in idiotically thundering up..," "..idiotically rocketing..,"

And then Mr McRae goes on to say: "In individual-freedom-fetish America.." (and it goes on). You need to go read this whole thing for yourself at the above link. I just can't believe all the stuff I have been reading everywhere all because Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers had a serious motorcycle accident this last Monday morning, June 12th. He wasn't wearing a helmet, his choice, and went head first into the windshield of the car that hit him. He sustained a broken jaw and lots of other injuries, which you can read about at WTAE TV4.

I am really mystified by all the discussion on motorcyclists this has created. There has been a lot of talk around the motorcycle blogging community about how well-known athletes and celebrity motorcyclists are to blame for the bad rap of the motorcycle image. But I think we really can’t blame the well-known athletes or celebrity motorcyclists, of course when they do stupid stuff it doesn’t help.

I think it’s the day to day motorcyclists that hurt the image. I have seen motorcyclists race down the main roads, cutting between cars in traffic. I have seen a few of the sport bikes pop wheelies on the main roads and the list just goes on. We’ve had two fatalities here over a month ago, within a week of each other. One was drunk and one was going too fast. They ran off the road and died. I'm sure that some of you have seen others doing these stunts and have even gotten after them for their reckless acts on the public roads. And if the police catch them, which some do get caught, they get tickets. That's the best anyone can do at this time. Many think that those who don't wear the gear is creating a bad image, but people need to remember that that is THEIR choice. There is lots of motorcycle education now available, that wasn't before. ABATE, MSF, AMA, etc are working hard on all these issues.

I do think that the good image of motorcyclists is slowly getting better. More and more ordinary people are buying and riding their motorcycles responsibly. When I got my bike so many people told me they just NEVER thought of me as a biker. And they are very use to the idea now.

Now when you get irresponsible journalists like Earl McRae pretending to be an expert on motorcyclists you just have to ignore them. There is always going to be the "Earl McRae's" in this world. I do think the image of motorcyclists is getting better. It will never be perfect. And we just have to live with that and do the best we can to improve the image.

So there's my two cents to add to all the others, lol. I do wish Ben Roethlisberger a speedy recover.

Wishing You Safe Journeys in Your Part of the World,

Betty :)

8 comments:

Dawn said...

That was a harsh article. Wow. You know I don't agree with things that others do, and I don't expect people to agree with what we do. I have friends who think I'm nuts because I ride with Patt, but I look at it as doing something different, enjoying life.

The ones speeding (Patt's ticket was $187.00) doing a wheelie (Patt again ticket $125.50) and even being in the wrong place at the wrong time and the only they could find was a tag not placed correctly (that ticket is $195.00)will get caught. No matter what bikes have a bad rep here. If you don't like them, don't get on one, but don't call us idiots. Sounds like Mr. Earl needs to get a life.

Hope you're having a good day and enjoying your ride :)

Giest said...

unbelieveable. i am embarrassed to call this man a Canadian. i can't believe that he would go on such a rant all due to one "famous" motorcyclist. i'm still shaking my head as i sit here. on behalf of Canada, i apologize for this twit.

good journeys.

Christine said...

Actually, Betty, it was three fatalaties. The one you refer to as "drunk" was not. However, he did have one drink. Normally a safe rider--wearing full safety gear and taking all the precautions--he didn't this one time. And not only that, he was the rider of the bike and his passenger too--a first date. She was killed instantly. He cut the corner too wide and hit the vehicle head on. I feel for the lady that hit him.

So, one drink did it for him. That day he chose not to wear a helmet, he chose to have a drink and was on his brand new motorcycle. He traded his old one in.

The other one was speed.

I do see stupid behavior, but I also see a lot of good riders too. You are correct, we all are responsble for representing this sport. It's unfortunate that it only takes one or two stupid actions to bring a "setback". However, in light of the issue...those folks paid with their lives--however smart or stupid their actions. We get to ride another day.

The journalist wrote an irresponsible and idiotic piece. Shows you that there are all kinds of idiots...on or off the backs of bikes.

Good article, girl!!

Biker Betty said...

Hi Dawn - You're right, that was a harsh article. I'm finding out that he writes like that quite regularly. Seems it brings the paper's ratings up. Gee, maybe they should just get intelligent journalists, what a thought?!?

Hi Giest - We all shake our heads in disbelief. I, for one, think Canadians are great people. After all, I married one, lol. He writes in such a radical format, that I never once took it as the "mutual" Canadian consensus. Don't worry, you're still a cool Canadian.

NOTE: For those of you reading this, go to Giest's blog. He has a link to that same paper that has printed a well-written rebuttal.

Hi Christine - Thanks for the corrections. I was thinking there were three accidents, but I could only think of the two. For me, all it takes is one beer. Bill calls me a cheap drunk, lol. You're right, that was irresponsible journalism. But I'm finding out that's how McRae makes his living, sigh.

Christine said...

LOL...Betty...I totally understand! It's not one beer for me, though. I just don't drink on the bike. Period. It just draws that line in the sand. I don't have to second guess or wonder if I'm sober or not. I just don't do it--it solves my problem altogether.

Yeah, and he's stirring the pot. Let him be, we are doing our jobs as responsible motorcyclists....even when I don't wear my headgear.

Biker Betty said...

Christine, you bring up a valid point. I, too, never drink when driving my bike. It's just not worth anything. I wait till I'm done for the day, then go home have have TWO!! (hick-up *chuckle*).

Gymi said...

Betty,
That was a great responce that you wrote to the misguided, uninformed and obviously under educated Mr. Mc Rea.

Bravo.
Gymi

Biker Betty said...

Hi Gymi - Thanks, I really tried to think it through and not reduce myself to McRae's level.