So what is the big deal about States Rights and what has it to do with MY motorcycle? That is a good question. What is the big deal about States Rights? How about what if some Know-it-all Federal bureaucrat, who has never swung a leg over a motorcycle, wakes up one morning and has an epiphany? What if it suddenly comes to them that a lot of these beautiful scenic roads in our National parks and Scenic Highways(Blue Ridge Parkway come to mind?) are awfully narrow in places and the drop-offs can be quite steep and dangerous. Much too dangerous for motorcycles to travel those roads. For the good of the riders,and of course the general public, we need to ban motorcycles from ALL these beautiful, scenic PUBLIC roads.
Now, let’s just assume for a moment that such an edict would make you and your riding buddies mad as a nest of angry bikers. What are you going to do about it. Where do you start. How do you even find that anonymous Federal worker, much less get a face-to-face to try to change their minds. Judgements and decisions like that are made every day in the bowels of gargantuan Federal Departments of Agriculture, Interior, Education, Energy…ad nauseum. If it were not for organizations like the American Motorcyclist Association, the Motorcycle Safety Foundation and others, You wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in HE double toothpicks in ever seeing anything done about it. These various agencies do a great job of keeping their thumb on the pulse of government. However, I would place a sizable wager on the fact that they all would rather be dealing with State Governments rather than have to worm their way through the never-ending maze of Federal Bureaus of this that and the other.
If you have ever done it, it is scary enough to have to deal with a local government on any matter of any size but still better than to have to deal with the Feds. If you have never been to a meeting of your City or County councils, or a session of your State Legislature, I Highly recommend that you do so. If you are like I was after my first such experience, you will walk away shaking your head in amazement and mumbling something like “how does anything get done”, or my personal favorite “what a bunch of idiots!”. Another thing that amazed me was how few people actually attend these meetings. If you happen to go back more than once, you will likely see most of the same people you saw before. To make an impact at the local level, it is a whole lot easier to pack tha gallery at your State Capitol than it is to go to Washington and get the DC side-step/runaround.
In my humble opinion, 80% of the Federal Agencies should be disbanded and their regulatory powers returned to the various states, where at least the local legislators are a bit closer to the issue and should be able to achieve a better understanding of it. My challenge to you would be to read the Federalist Papers and find out why we are a nation of states to begin with. I’m not really a betting man, but I would also wager(safe bet) that most people you meet do not have a clue about why there are individual states. It is all there in the Federalist Papers, the Anti-Federalist Papers and the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights. I believe that the answer to our nation’s problems are in the mirror that you look in every day. It is true that watching politics is like watching sausage being made, but after you endure it for awhile you get used to it and then you begin to see why it is such an ugly process. Get off the couch….get involved….help save our beautiful country!