Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Guns and Motorcycles and Mindsets...

You couldn't ask for a better fall day to go for a ride than today.  Sixty-five degrees, sunny, a light breeze... these are the some of the few great fall days left for riding, but my riding today wasn't just for fun... it's time to fill up the gas tanks, add the fuel stabilizer, and put the two-wheeled machines into hybernation to avoid Ohio winters and the man-made snow we call road salt.

A few years ago, I had just swung the leg over and off one of the motorcycles in a parking lot outside a grocery store and was taking my helmet off when a elderly lady walked up.  Without even a "howdy-doo", she told me, "You know what they call those at the hospital? Murder-cycles! My neighbor's son was killed on one of those a couple of years ago, you'll never see me on one, they should outlaw all of them."

I smiled and politely said, "I know what you mean, ma'am... one of my best friends was killed in a car crash back in high school, you'll never see me get in a car... they should outlaw all of them!"  She looked at me, stared for a second or two, then turned and went back to her car.

I fancy myself an amateur student of human nature and I've seen a lot of different mindsets in my lifetime.  It is difficult to figure all of them out.  The outcomes and conclusions various people have come to are obvious, but the road to the get there is often a mystery.

I have yet to meet a state legislator over the years that rides a motorcycle and favors mandatory helmet laws, but a lot of those who don't ride prefer mandated brain buckets for everyone who rides.  One gal gets robbed at gun point and wants to ban all guns... while another gal robbed at gunpoint wants to get a gun, learn how to use it, and carry it with her.

Often, I surmise in my philosophical musings - the deepest of which usually occur while riding motorcycles or John Deere tractors - that there are basically two primary mindsets... those who want to take care of themselves and those who want taken care of.  All subsets of mindsets probably fall under one of those two categories... at least in my mindset.

So what are your thoughts on guns and motorcycles and mindsets?


  1. I've yet to meet many who ride or shoot who also believe in nanny statism. It takes a sense of personal responsibility, the understanding that outcomes are married to choices, to have the courage to decide that freedom is worth risk. I'm not knocking those who weigh the risks and decide that the couch and the state are the better choices but I do object to anyone deciding what risks and choices are allowable and even moral. They may be safer in a cage being watched by the keepers but they'll never be free.

  2. Guns or motorcycles, it doesn't matter which; I want one more than I currently have...

  3. We are definitely of the mindset of wanting to take care of ourselves. My Farmer Hubby feels the same of seatbelts as you mentioned about helmets. He knows of the statistics but feels it's an individual choice.

    Your come back to the little old gal was great, she hadn't thought it all through or is one who likes being taken care of.

  4. I ride and always wear a helmet, but think it should be a personal choice.

    What interests me about helmet and seatbelt laws is that someone has decided for me that I need to wear my seatbelt or helmet when driving or traveling. Yet they want to regulate when I can carry a gun and prohibit me from protecting myself from harm in this instance.

    Doesn't make much sense to me.