Sep 10, 2014

Mind Control

We are a nation that likes to imagine itself with as little connection to reality as possible. The “American Dream” is as universally accepted here as Heaven/Nirvana/The Garden/Big Rock Candy Mountain/whatever. Just like those magical places, the Dream seems to be so different for each of us that it is hard to believe anyone can find a lick of commonality when they try to describe their Dream/Heaven to someone else. For example, my idea of Hell would be exactly the Midwestern Methodist white-bread singing, praying, and potluck dinner nightmare my Kansas family described as “Heaven.”

Two places where our national insanity rears its silly-assed head without a lick of shame are gun ownership and motorcycle “rights.” As far as guns are concerned, Jim Jefferies pretty much summed up my opinions of the issue. He’s said it all, just way funnier than I said it at the time. Or any time.

Likewise, we (as in the 0.01% of the public who actually ride motorcycles occasionally) believe that we should not be required to make even the slightest nod toward admitting that our vehicle of choice is exactly what medical professionals call it: a donorcycle or, if you believe the industry deserves some responsibility, murdercycles. We pretend that it is perfectly acceptable for motorcycles to contribute injuries at a rate that is thousands of times greater than motorcycles contribute to traffic. We believe that it’s reasonable for cagers to be required to strap in to their crumple-zone-protected, airbag padded, generally stable under all conditions cars while motorcyclists shouldn’t even have to wear a $50 helmet because it messes up our hair (for the rare motorcyclist who has hair). Boots, gloves, eye protection, armored riding gear? “Hell no! Um an ‘Merican. Ya caint make me wear dat dum stuff! Wudnt look cool. Ah gut ma raghts! Live free ur die.” Unless, of course, I get busted up instead of killed. Then I fully expect society to haul my brainless ass to a hospital, fix me up (for free, since I don’t have health insurance), blame the cager, bar, or imperfectly designed road for my injury and compensate me for “damages,” provide me with welfare since I can no longer work (if I ever did), and give me really good drugs so I won’t be depressed.

Our reason for all of this is exactly the same as gun owners’ reason for why their “2nd Amendment Rights” (as opposed to their Constitutional responsibilities) are sacred, “’cause I wanna.” No wonder the average cager or pedestrian has the same thought when a motorcycle blubbers through town or the neighborhood, “What a moron.”

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