Gun Rights

Published on October 21st, 2016 | by David "Double D" Devereaux


Being a Biker Could Mean Losing Your Gun Rights

John is a member of a motorcycle club and a proud Texas biker. He is a hard working family man, a degree professional, and has never been charged with a crime. Recently, while riding his motorcycle, and wearing his club colors, he was pulled over by police in Fort Worth for failure to signal before changing lanes. He immediately gave the police his CHL, his license and insurance.


But the real motive of officers soon became apparent, and John was harassed with questions regarding his club and the patches on his black denim vest. They asked to search his motorcycle but he refused to consent without a search warrant. There was no basis for a warrant and the officers knew it. But after the officers spoke back and forth with their Sgt., he was arrested for failure to use a turn signal.


Pictures were then taken of John, his vest, and his bike. Officers then proceeded to search his motorcycle incident to the arrest for a minor traffic infraction. Officers broke his locked saddlebags in order to search them. They found nothing! But his legal weapon was confiscated and the police are refused to release it. Moreover, officers in Fort Worth have filed with the state to have his CHL rights taken away.


Motorcycle Profiling and Gun Rights


John’s story epitomizes the issue of motorcycle profiling, most often taking the form of a pre-textual traffic stop initiated to harass and search motorcyclists based on appearance and protected associations. In many states, traffic infractions are crimes subject to arrest, which in turn allows officers to legally search you and your vehicle.


John’s story also demonstrates a newly emerging trend where members of motorcycle clubs have their weapons seized and/or their legally obtained concealed carry licenses revoked for no other reason than appearance and association.


Targeting individuals with concealed carry permits makes little sense from a law enforcement perspective. In order to obtain a permit, an individual must pass extensive background checks and have no relevant criminal history. Individuals with permits, even motorcycle club members, are not convicted gang members or violent criminals. Is stereotype really that much stronger than reality? And even if it is, shouldn’t motorcyclists attempt to do something about it?


Building a Coalition


There has been a longstanding position taken by many motorcycle rights advocates to avoid mixing politics with other political coalitions. But gun rights may be the one exception. The impact of motorcycle profiling on 2nd Amendment rights strikes at the political and philosophical heart of most motorcyclists and many Americans generally. Rethinking this perspective may be in order.


Legislative solutions are the best path because 4th Amendment law says pre-textual traffic stops are permitted regardless of subjective motives. State legislation can go beyond the minimal protections against pre-textual traffic stops with a discriminatory motive.


Building a partnership between the 2nd Amendment and the motorcycle rights lobby, based on legitimate policy crossover and issues of profiling (gun owners are profiled too), provides the potential for a coalition that expands the manpower of both movements based on fundamental liberties.





[John’s actual name has been omitted for privacy and safety of the victim]


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About the Author


is the Spokesperson for the Washington State Council of Clubs, Founder of the Motorcycle Profiling Project, and works with motorcyclists at the national level. Contact: Send Email,

DISCLAIMER: Although comments are encouraged and appreciated, not all comments will be posted by Motorcycle Profiling Project LLC. The Motorcycle Profiling Project LLC appreciates oppositional viewpoints but will not post any comments that do not contribute to a respectful and meaningful discussion or are blatantly discriminatory or otherwise offensive. Resubmissions will be considered at the commenter's request.

7 Responses to Being a Biker Could Mean Losing Your Gun Rights

  1. Avatar Michael Kirk Sr says:

    Just wondering if there is any Petitions to sign to get laws changed, if so please forward them.. Thanks, God Bless Brothers, Two Down..

  2. Avatar Tony "Pan" Sanfelipo says:

    Thank you for posting this most important and interesting article. I have argued for a number of years that restricting our focus within the motorcycle rights community to “only” motorcycle issues can have negative consequences. I agree that we should not be involving our grass-roots organizations in matters such as abortion or other issues which would are divisive due to differing opinions among our groups. But certain issues like First, Second and Fourth Amendment violations do carry over to motorcyclists in the form of profiling. To say “we only consider motorcycle issues” is ignoring those issues that cross over and include certain members or groups of our community. I think it’s equally important to change the mind-set or way of thinking among some of us. The amendments, like the Second Amendment, do not give us the right to keep and bear arms. What the Second Amendment does is reaffirm that we already have that right and the amendment reminds government that it is a right that shall not be “infringed.” Thanks again.

  3. Pingback: Being a Biker Could Mean Losing Your Gun Rights – Oregon Confederation of Clubs

  4. Avatar Stick says:

    Why are you so paranoid we trying to protect the country too and don’t be too harsh on us cuz we are growing and helping the vet and poor and handicapped children, so be cool and let is have our freedom we try learn our mistake but we live to ride and ride to live this is America .

  5. Avatar AnnaMarie says:

    Seriously!!?? It’s bad enough that Hillary Clinton is trying to take away are 2nd amendment rights just like Obama tried!!.. NOT HAPPENING!!! in Texas of all places where you’re taught how to shoot before grade school
    I Really hope this doesn’t happen because everyone else will try to follow!! THAT”S JUST WRONG!! YOU”RE TAKING AWAY OUR 2nd Amendemnt Rights!!

  6. Avatar Sarge Nelson says:


  7. I’d strongly suggest the MPP approach the GOA (Gun Owners of America) as opposed to other more “compromise oriented” groups when seeking an ally. As the only “no compromise” gun rights lobby in this nation, I suspect you will find a distinct lack of prejudice with respect to bikers and our gun rights. GOA will take this threat seriously, because the false pretext used against us today will be modified to be used against others tomorrow.

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