This is the season that drives outlaw biker experts nuts.
Next month will mark the 42nd anniversary of the first two biker toy runs in Los Angeles and Bergen, New Jersey. At the time, a gang detective told the Los Angeles Times, “I suppose Hitler did some good things, too.” The song has never changed.
About four years ago, Police magazine headlined an article about the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club with, “The outlaw motorcycle gang conducts highly publicized toy runs to benefit disadvantaged children. Don’t be fooled by this public-relations tactic.”
Last year biker authority Jorge Gil-Blanco warned the general public, “They’re criminal organizations. They try to enhance their image by doing blood drives or so-called charity events, but even at these events we end up having shootings.”
Last spring, American hero Jay Dobyns told America not to be fooled that “these big, rough-looking teddy bears that do blood drives and toy runs…are harmless,”
And shortly before his arrest last July for possession of child pornography, University of North Texas “motorcycle gang expert” James Quinn explained “They do toy runs and host motorcycle races and things like that…. They want to look like a normal fraternal organization like the Rotary Club or the Elks or whatever. They’re not.”
When You Do Right
You can expect to read a lot of these pronouncements over the next three weeks. The way it works in television news is that first a fearsome looking guy with a beard explains that he belongs to a club not a gang. Then a local cop who qualifies as a “motorcycle gang expert” because he once took a class from Steve Cook will present an opposite point of view and get the last word.
Motorcycle club sponsored charity runs of one kind or another began about a month ago in the far north and the Rockies. There was a toy run in Durango this weekend. The runs are just getting started now in most of the rest of the country. Christmas charity runs have become a worldwide phenomenon. There will be toy runs this year on at least five of the seven continents. Most of them are sponsored by small motorcycle clubs that get little recognition for their good deeds
For example, last week the Dead Men Motorcycle Club (photo above) delivered a ton of turkeys to a food bank in Rock Springs, Wyoming. It is the third year the Dead Men have tried to make sure all their neighbors have full bellies for the holidays. This month the club is collecting books to donate to inmates at the Sweetwater County Detention Center. Critics may look at that as coddling criminals but a spokesman for the clubs replies, “Most of the inmates in county are simply there because they can’t afford an attorney. Not because they are guilty of anything.”
Make a cop crazy this December. Remember the less fortunate. Do something kind.