May 2007 ABATE of SC Coordinator Report
Written by FastFred Ruddock April 12, 2007
We have certainly gained some ground at the statehouse since last month. The gang bill is still in the House Judiciary Committee; those of us who organize poker runs or just take part in poker runs should still be gravely concerned about S141 the gang bill. Please keep making those phone calls and writing those letters to legislators. Cliff has provided contact numbers for each bill of interest in this month’s legislative report; apparently addressing your concerns to the committee holding a bill of interest has more impact than just addressing one individual. However the importance of developing a working relationship with your senator and representative cannot be over stressed. Please take the time to get acquainted with your elected officials.
Since last month I have logged many more miles while performing my duties as coordinator for this fine organization. As most of you are aware I do not own a cage and travel exclusively on two wheels. During my travels many bikers have asked about my helmet ticket and court case. The details of that case are included in an article submitted to this newsletter and Full Throttle of the Carolinas. Some of the actual paperwork used in court including the brief have been made available at BikerEzine.com for others wishing to oppose helmet laws.
Following my appearance in court I took time to visit with biker activists in Asheville, Pickens, and Rock Hill. Bikers traveling to Asheville may wish to consider contacting the Buncombe chapter of CBA; they have a weekly gathering on Friday evenings to share a meal and brotherhood. I traveled the Blue Ridge Parkway to Pickens and saw some large icicles and one thick ice patch that covered the road; the ride was brisk. Between Pickens and Rock Hill I paused long enough to visit the Cowpens battlefield. Daniel Morgan gave Tarleton and the British forces a “devil of a whipping” and turned the tide of the revolutionary war at Cowpens. I recommend visiting this sacred ground to all bikers. High Country held its first ever area meeting and I was in attendance for the historic moment.
Members of ABATE of SC attended CBA’s Strategic Planning meeting. We learned about planning and the new budget process CBA is working to implement; ABATE of SC has also been working on the implementation of a budget process. Following the strategic planning we were all treated with a presentation by Slider Gilmore. Slider’s “Accident Scene Management” presentation is famous. I would like to see ABATE of SC invite Slider within the next two years to present this valuable information to a large gathering of South Carolina bikers. My return trip from Asheboro was not very smooth. The high mileage placed upon my bike in performance of the duties of coordinator has begun to take a toll; it cost me over $700 and three days to repair the final drive. No one ever said the price of freedom is cheap.
My two day Spring Break from work was spent in the upstate promoting ABATE and taking one long mountain hike. Spartanburg still needs a viable chapter. A police officer in Lake Lure gave me a chance to practice what I learned in court fighting the helmet law; apparently it works because he would not issue me a ticket. More on this subject and photos from the various trips are available at BikerEzine.com. The ride to Columbia began in the snow but we enjoyed a peaceful and productive two hour BOD meeting on April 7th. After adjourning the meeting at 3:00 PM many of us rode to Bad Bob’s Mystery Run turned Polar Run to lend our support and wish him a speedy recovery.
Keep up the good fight to retain your rights in Columbia; we are making a difference!