ABATE of South Carolina Coordinator Report
By FastFred Ruddock, February 17, 2007
January and February have been trying times for
many of us. Our treasurer Bad Bob was seriously injured while
riding one of his motorcycles when a car violated his right
of way by pulling out and striking him. Ironically Bob was on
his way home from a friend’s funeral that had been killed
in another accident. Our legislative coordinator Dennis Welborn
is recovering nicely from open heart surgery. Other issues seem
to pale in comparison to the well being of our family.
However all of us should be concerned about Senate
Bill S141: Criminal Gang Prevention Act. The title of the bill
seems innocuous enough and there is a growing problem of youth
street gangs that beg attention. However upon careful inspection
of the wording of this bill S141 several serious flaws become
apparent. I urge all of the bikers of ABATE to carefully read
the bill for themselves. A copy of the current gang bill
is provided in this newsletter for your inspection. Paul N.Uricchio,III
of Uricchio and Associates Law Firm has been kind enough to
study the proposed gang bill S141 and write an article
in terms you and I can easily understand.
As your state coordinator I have been very busy
during the past month following the gang bill’s progression
through committees in our state senate. Many concerned members
have been calling and meeting with me regarding this menacing
legislation. Some of these members have gone further and organized
membership drive gatherings to recruit other concerned bikers
to join the fight. ABATE is becoming more diverse and representative
of all motorcyclists in South Carolina. Please join me in extending
a warm welcome to our newest members and brothers. I encourage
all members to recruit more South Carolina bikers from every
walk of life to our cause.
Serving as the coordinator of ABATE of South Carolina
places a lot of mileage on my motorcycle. During the past month
I attended the legislative
meeting on the first Saturday of February and visited with
Bob at the hospital; other members visited Bad Bob after
our legislative meeting. I saw at the meeting that many of you
have stepped up to help in legislative matters while Dennis
rests and heals following his surgery. The following weekend
I attended Bad
Bob’s Benefit BBQ before paying another visit to Bad
Bob in the hospital, Afterwards I rode to the Coastal
Area meeting near Florence. Finally I rode along with the
Coastal Area Coordinator to the East
Cooper Oyster Roast during the same weekend.
The original purpose of my trip to the Coastal
Area Meeting was to answer questions from their membership.
Strangely enough they did not have any questions when I arrived.
However I did have a lot of fun and brotherhood hanging out
with the coastal members. We talked about the issues facing
ABATE and a few internal issues. Most of the members seem to
be quite pleased with the current direction ABATE is headed.
I would be happy to visit your chapter or area if you invite
me to visit or answer questions at your next meeting.
I attempt to focus my efforts where the greatest
need is present rather than where I may get the most pats on
the back; I reckon I gained this trait in the process of earning
my Eagle Scout award as a young man many years ago. Spartanburg
is an area where there are many bikers but no ABATE chapters;
I have focused most of my recruiting efforts in the Spartanburg
area. Preferring to lead by example rather than bossing people
around I provide some guerilla theater for potential members.
Some of the theater involves riding lidless through Lake Lure
where many South Carolina bikers from Spartanburg and the Upstate
regularly hangout. This seems to catch their attention and create
interesting conversations at the Margaritagrille. There is a
huge potential for growth in the upper region of our state.
ABATE’s future success rests upon waking the sleeping
giant in the Anderson, Greenville, Spartanburg Metropolitan