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ABATE of SC State Coordinator February Report 2004-02-22

Since last month's newsletter you have all been busy at work lobbying for biker rights. Our Horry and Pee Dee chapters have been busy gaining new sponsors for our failure to yield right of way (ROW) bill 3653. Way to go Coastal ABATE! Time is running out in this legislative session; we need more sponsors from across the entire state. We must make a big final push to gain passage of our ROW bill NOW. Some legislators have baulked when asked to support our ROW bill due to the license suspension language in the bill. If your State Representative has not signed on as a sponsor of ROW bill 3653 politely ask him to explain why. Once you learn the reason for non-sponsorship please contact our state office at 843-345-5926 or

I suggest you print a copy of H3653 and discuss its contents at your next chapter meeting; do we want to compromise and strike the license suspension language from the bill or reserve suspension for only those who kill or maim? Send your answer to the state meeting; this is your organization we need your feedback. All ABATE of SC members are welcomed and invited to attend state meetings.

These following state representatives deserve thank you notes from our membership: Chellis, Young, Bailey, Clemmons, Altman, Hinson, Toole, Umphlett, Viers and Miller. Consider visiting them and shaking their hands for supporting this important piece of legislation. All other state representatives should be politely asked to sponsor H3653 or explain why they are not sponsoring this bill.

ABATE of SC needs to increase its voice in the national arena. The MRF is our best bet to be heard through a national organization BUT currently we have only 52 SC members in the MRF. Numbers talk, we need more members in the MRF to gain a larger voice in their organization, policies, and federal agenda. Last month 24 of you joined the MRF but we need at least 48 more members to solidify our standing within the MRF. PLEASE take the time to fill out the MRF application in this newsletter now; make sure your grandchildren and their children and grandchildren to follow will still have the liberty to ride motorcycles.

While you are having fun at the Heritage Motorcycle Rally this year remember it is the anniversary of the first shots of the American Revolution. On April 18, 1775, British General Thomas Gage sent 700 soldiers to destroy guns and ammunition the colonists had stored in the town of Concord, just outside of Boston. The British also planned to arrest Samuel Adams and John Hancock, two key leaders of the patriot movement. 75 brave freedom fighters attacked the British at Lexington though out numbered 10 to 1; they paid a heavy price for the Liberty you and I enjoy today.

Today we face challenges to liberty by many politicians more intent on gaining personal power and wealth rather than do what's best for our constitutional republic. Safety nannies want to legislate the clothes and hats you wear under force of law up to and including imprisonment. Environmentalists want to legislate our air-cooled engines out of existence. Others are intent upon to taking away our guns and ammunition much as the British attempted.

75 brave souls stopped the British at high personal cost. We can now stop the loss of liberty without risking life and limb by writing letters to elected officials and taking a day off from work to lobby at the Capitol. If you don't have enough time or money to visit Washington DC and lobby Congress please join the MRF to help fund the efforts of others who are making the time. Will we take the efforts to honor those brave minutemen who gave all to win our liberty? Will we pass the touch of liberty to the next generation?

Silence is considered consent by many lawmakers. As we lose our liberty we have no one but ourselves to blame; we elected them; we told them what to do (silence speaks volumes). It is time to take our republic back at the voting booth and campaign trials of our friends running for office. We now have 3 ABATE of SC members elected to the South Carolina General Assembly; we can win this battle by electing more bikers to public office.

Have I done all that I can to the best of my ability to defend liberty? HELL NO, but I'm trying.

FastFred Ruddock - ABATE of SC State Coordinator

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