So, the bikies are being put back in their place and the world is safer for it. We can all now sleep safe in our beds and that intimidating menace will be taken care of.
A procession of state governments has been trying to bring in controversial laws to supposedly keep the public safe for years now. The Queensland government has succeeded where the South Australian and New South Wales governments have previously failed.
New South Wales has now had another crack after rushing it through. They have also removed the right to silence. In New South Wales they are also making merry with their consorting laws.
The media focus in Victoria is fascinating, every day another story of raids, guns and drugs that may or may not have links to people who may or may not be members of, associates of or saw someone once who was in a motorcycle club.
In South Australia they are having another tilt at their laws. Police in that state are about embark upon another Supreme Court action in an attempt to have the Finks MC declared a criminal organisation. This apparently will be followed by further applications to have the Hells Angels MC and the Rebels MC outlawed.
The governments have successfully conned the general public into believing they need these laws to make our country safer. The media have helped this cause with sensationalist reporting and skewing of facts and the public has bought into it giving up freedoms with barely a whimper.
This legislation, no matter which state it has come from, is based on anti-terrorism laws and allows the use of secret evidence. An eligible judge, can declare a motorcycle club a criminal organisation if satisfied with evidence that the police present in their application. The problem is much of that evidence is likely to be confidential criminal intelligence.
The term “confidential criminal intelligence” should send a shudder down your spine. This “intelligence” is not to be shared with your legal team. They will not know what it is and how to mount a defence against it. How can we allow that to happen in a supposedly free and democratic country.
Right, you have read this far and are thinking…”so what, it is about the bikies and I am not a bikie”. None of this legislation mentions bikies. It does not mention biker. It does not mention motorcyclist.
It is not now, nor has it ever been, about the bikies. They are just the bogey man that is helping to sell this legislation.
If you think this is about bikies you are kidding yourself.
There are criminals in motorcycle clubs. The same as there are criminals in Lifesaving clubs, Rotary clubs, Bridge Clubs, Scout Troops and Church groups.
There is no argument from anyone in this statement. The argument however is that not all members of lifesaving clubs, rotary clubs or even motorcycle clubs are criminals.
The government is trying to declare people to be criminals because of what they wear and who they hang out with. They are trying to declare someone to be a criminal even if they have never carried out a criminal act and do not have a criminal record. Potentially having a beer on a Friday night with your mates while you watch the footy on TV will make you a criminal and could cost you up to five years in gaol.
So far this battle has been between the various state governments and the clubs that are directly involved. The clubs have support from around the country through the United Motorcycle Councils but they are up against a potential open cheque book of taxpayer funded legal teams.
The clubs are also up against a compliant media. The reporting on this is pretty much one sided. You will find the odd article speaking to the human rights and civil liberties side of the story. Every now and then there will be something against this legislation from a Law Society but, the overwhelming coverage of this debate is in favour of the police and state governments.
As was stated by a former South Australian Attorney-General, this is a social experiment. If these laws are successfully put into place and motorcycle clubs are banned throughout the country do you really think that will be the end of the laws?
Are you really that naïve?
First they came for the Jews…and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew,
Then they came for the communists…and I did not speak out because I was not a communist,
Then they came for the trade unionists…and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist,
Then they came for me…and there was no one left to speak out for me…
Pastor Martin Niemoller, Berlin, 1939
Ride Safe….and FREE while you still can…Mork