I attended the Michigan ABATE seminar and learned about the fight going on about No-Fault Insurance & motorcycles. The MI legislature passed a bill that a motor vehicle has to have more than 3 wheels. The result is that motorcycles are not considered motor vehicles and are NOT covered under no-fault insurance as of July 1st. Michigan ABATE has been actively fighting this and they have surprisingly found that many of the Representatives did not realize this language was in the bill. They didn’t read it! There were other cost cutting provisions in the bill that will make motorcycle insurance even more expensive in Michigan. This is a good example of why we need to remain vigilant. This bill was passed and signed by the Governor in the middle of the night, so they could get it through without giving people time to read and react to it. In this day and age these kinds of measures should not be allowed to happen, but it still does.
This year is a big election year and you need to educate yourself about which state and local politicians are motorcycle friendly. Sometimes it’s more important to know who is not motorcycle friendly to try to either change their minds or vote them out of office. This year we will be putting together a guide for you to use when you vote in November. If you know of a politician you would like to support, call the state office to let us know who they are. You can also have discussions in your Region meetings and the Region Director can bring your recommendations to a State Board Meeting.
Motorcycle Awareness month is right around the corner. You can use this as a reason to visit your Representative and ask for a Proclamation and then talk to them about issues that are important to motorcyclists. Tell them about the Awareness Rally and Parade to the State House on May and when they see it on the news, they’ll think about your conversation. Tell them about all the money our rides generate for charities and how many groups are made up of Veterans and Law Enforcement / Fire personnel and next time they see us, they’ll be more aware of who they are looking at.
Membership in ABATE can mean many things. To some it’s an extended family; to some it’s a Brotherhood; to me it’s a responsibility. My freedom of choice is as important to me today as it was when I came back from Vietnam and I will fight the government to maintain these freedoms. As ABATE members we fight to keep helmet choice, on or off, whichever you choose. We fight to keep our roads safe for motorcycles, right now from autonomous cars that can’t see us. We fight for laws making distracted drivers accountable for their actions. We fight to keep control of motorcycle training in our state to make sure it’s up to our standards. We fight discrimination and profiling of motorcyclists. On our off days we have fun at meets and events. We raise a ton of money for charities that support kids, low income families, veteran and other organizations. We share laughs and tears. Whatever your reason for being a member, you are important to our organization. If you have let your membership lapse, come on back. If you want to be a part of us, call 800-25BIKER and we’ll get you signed up.
Bicycle groups are reporting that mandatory helmet usage actually makes them LESS SAFE. Sound familiar? I will be diving into their facts and reasoning to see how it compares to our fight and see if there is any new information for us to use. Stay tuned.
Ride Within Your Limits
Mike Stock, Chairman of the Board
800-25BIKER or 419-654-5446