Wednesday, September 13


Ok, this is what I’m talking about! Motorcyclists encounter some pretty ugly stereotypes, which are not manufactured out of thin air. I mean, there is a grain of truth inherent in any stereotype. Problem is, that grain is then categorically applied to everyone and those who don’t fit it are seen as the exceptions to the rule. Here’s an example of what fuels the stereotypes about motorcyclists being daredevils and law-breakers.

While thumbing through the latest issue of a motorcycle magazine my eyes settle on an ad. The ad is bold, red and captivating. It screams at you to “avoid costly traffic tickets!” The “s” in costly is the dollar sign. It explains how one can render a bike “invisible” to police cameras. There is a photo of a traffic signal with a red slash through it. Moreover, according to the ad, it is “100% legal.” How does this work? Well, buy a can of this stuff, spray it on your license plate and voila, your license plate becomes unreadable in a photo. The chemical creates a plate that is indecipherable when “flashed.” No surprise tickets in the mail.

I’m aware that radar detectors serve a similar purpose, if you really want to get technical. But there is a difference. With a radar detector, if you run a red light, flee the police or are seen by someone else while in the midst of committing a traffic offense, your license plate can be recorded. There is only one reason I can come up with that explains why anyone would want this product and that’s to avoid justice when braking the law. How about riding with good sense and obeying traffic laws as the best way to avoid costly tickets?

Isn’t buying a can of this saying, “I want to and I plan to break the law with impunity.” It’s designed for speed “freaks,” lane-splitters (in non-lane splitting friendly states), and tollbooth free-riders, to skirt the law. This is how many people see motorcyclists in general. The makers of this product surely feel they are providing a needed service. Seems to me that what they’ve done is capitalize on and perpetuate a negative stereotypes about motorcyclists. And, those who buy it, also feed into the outlaw stereotype. Or, am I just not getting it? Somebody, please explain to me what I’m missing here?