The truth. The truth about outlaw motorcycle clubs. Not the version you see on TV. It’s not Sons of Absurdity or Gangland. It’s not rape, pillage, and organized crime. But it’s not the church choir or the Boy Scouts either. The truth is that self-identified outlaw motorcycle clubs are rebellious, anti-establishment, and very critical of law enforcement and government abuses of discretion.
Motorcycle clubs, including outlaw motorcycle clubs, are also genuinely dedicated to charity and fundraising for bikers in need. The entire culture is based on the concepts of loyalty, honor, and respect. But make no mistake. Do not take kindness for weakness.
Verbal disrespect will not get you shot, stabbed, or killed. That would require a physical threat to person or loved one and most likely in self-defense. However, getting smacked for running your mouth is not outside the realm of possibility.
Motorcycle club culture has been heavily influenced by veterans returning from war. World War II veterans first. Then the explosion of clubs following Vietnam solidified outlaw motorcycle clubs as part of American culture. Rebellious and looking for acceptance not given by a post-Vietnam America, veterans formed motorcycle clubs that created an environment of brotherhood and support outside of mainstream society. Outlaw motorcycle clubs embraced the outlaw mythology and the role of anti-establishment rebels.
Equating the term “outlaw” with “criminal” is purely a law enforcement conception embraced by a sensationalized media. Reality does not justify the claim. Sure there are criminals and felons in some outlaw motorcycle clubs. But no more so than law enforcement or most other large communities.
In fact, more police officers are charged and convicted of felonies every year than members of outlaw motorcycle clubs. And members of outlaw motorcycle clubs have been heavily involved in the grassroots rights movement concerning civil liberties ranging from helmet choice to profiling.