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Bikers' Rights: Florida Bikers: How Much Are You Willing To Sacrifice For Stiffer Right-Of-Way Violation Penalties?

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Florida Bikers: How Much Are You Willing To Sacrifice For Stiffer Right-Of-Way Violation Penalties?
Release Number 0072

Motorcycling Endurance Riders
Bikers Rights, Motorcyclists Rights, Long Distance Motorcycle Riding

Extreme Long Distance Endurance Motorcycle Rider IronBoltBruce Attention Florida Riders and Freedom Fighters:

In recent days, you may have heard cult leader James "Doc" Reichenbach II crowing about the stiffer penalties for right-of-way violations included in proposed senate bill SB-1992:

http://tinyurl.com/5ezlt9

You will find the current text of that bill here:

http://tinyurl.com/5swksf

This is a long and complicated piece of legislation, but I strongly urge you to take a long and hard look at ALL of its provisions before deciding whether to support or oppose it. YES, the bill does include "... enhanced penalties for moving violations that cause injury or death to a person on a motorcycle", specifically...

"318.195 Enhanced penalties for moving violations causing injury or death to motorcyclists.-- (1) A person who is convicted of a moving violation that causes serious bodily injury, as defined in s. 316.1933(1)(b), to another person on a motorcycle commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, shall pay a fine of not less than $500, shall serve a minimum of 30 days' imprisonment, and shall be required to attend a driver improvement course. In addition, the court shall revoke the person's driver's license for at least 30 days. (2) A person who is convicted of a moving violation that causes or contributes to causing the death of another person on a motorcycle commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, shall pay a fine of at least $1,000, shall serve a minimum term of 90 days' imprisonment, and, in lieu of s. 322.0261, shall be required to attend an advanced driver improvement course. In addition, the court shall revoke the driver's license of a person so convicted for 1 year. (3) This section does not prohibit a person from being charged with, convicted of, or punished for any other violation of law."

...BUT, also included are increased fees for motorcyclists and virtually ALL of the draconian provisions of HB-137 and SB-802 other than seizure, including "...requiring an operator of a motorcycle or moped to maintain both wheels on the ground at all times; ... requiring that the license tag of a motorcycle or moped be affixed horizontally; [and] providing additional penalties for certain offenses involving the operation of a motorcycle or excessive speed." And if that's not enough to give you pause, TAKE A LOOK AT THIS PROVISION:

"Section 5. Whoever willfully displays on a vehicle an obscene word, image, or device, including, but not limited to, reproductive glands, commits a noncriminal traffic violation, punishable as a moving violation as provided in chapter 318, Florida Statutes."

OK, so the good ole boys with "Piss on Ford/Chevy/Whoever" decals in the rear windows of their pickups will have to either break out their razor blades or risk the points. But does it end there? NOPE. The word "obscene" is not specifically defined ... which means this penalty could be arbitrarily applied ... based solely upon the subjective moral code of the officer making the charge:

* What if his definition of obsene is "Offensive to morality or decency; indecent; depraved"? Does that mean scraping the F-T-W sticker off your windshield?

* Or, what if he defines obscene as "Offensive to accepted standards of decency or modesty"? Does that mean you'll have to lose the loose-looking lady custom-painted on your tank?

* And what if he defines obscene more broadly as "Offensive to the senses, or to taste and refinement." Does that mean you'll have to wrench off all your bolt-on chrome skulls until you reach the Georgia line?

This all may sound silly to some of you. But I urge you to recognize that this provision carries with it the serious threat of arbitrary application of a subjective standard ... one which could easily be used by anti-biker LEOs and others to penalize motorcycle riders solely on the basis of our lifestyle. So I ask you once again:

HOW MUCH ARE YOU WILLING TO SACRIFICE FOR STIFFER RIGHT-OF-WAY VIOLATION PENALTIES?

Contact your State Senator and let them know:

http://tinyurl.com/gegh5

Contact your State Representative and let them know:

http://tinyurl.com/6qj8ne

***

My thanks to Robert "RC" Conroy (rckimnama@aol.com) for inspiring and contributing to this important communication.

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