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Social profiling of riders goes global

Bikers rally in California against profiling
Bikers rally in California

Australia isn’t the only country that is vilifying riders with (or without)  anti-association and consorting laws.

Californian police have been profiling riders by stopping, searching and detaining riders without any legal basis.

California Highway Patrol - social profiling
California Highway Patrol

Now a petition has been launched to support anti-profiling laws in California and rider Tabitha Montalvo has asked MotorbikeWriter to share the petition link to encourage Aussies to sign and support the proposed Bill.


“I noticed you’re active on for similar interests,” she says. “Would you please consider signing and promoting our Anti-Profiling Against Motorcyclists Bill for California, USA on your Facebook and other social media sites? The Bill will be presented in January and we need worldwide support. Thank you!”

The petition says the proposed California Bill RN 14-24215 would “add minimum standards and training requirements to the Penal Code to ensure that the profiling of motorcycle riders is addressed in the course of law enforcement training in conjunction with existing training regarding profiling.”


“Profiling of motorcycle riders means using the fact that a person rides a motorcycle or wears motorcycle paraphernalia as a factor, without any individualised suspicion of the particular person, in deciding to stop and question, take enforcement action, arrest, or search a person or vehicle, with or without legal basis under the California Constitution or the United States Constitution.

“This Bill would require all local law enforcement agencies to adopt a written policy designed to prevent the profiling of motorcycle riders, as well as to review and audit existing policies to ensure their compliance.”

Rather than more Australian High Court challenges against existing anti-bikie laws, we should follow the lead in California and seek to introduce anti-profiling laws.

To do that, we need politicians in each state to champion anti-profiling laws.

The current batch of anti-bikie laws seems to have given police the right or at least tacit approval to harass all any motorcycle rider, which is basically social profiling and no better than racial profiling. The laws have also emboldened the media to vilify all riders.

Recently, a West Australian traffic officer instructed his team to target every motorbike on local roads, although he says that is because of the high crash rate among riders.

Apart from signing the above petition, Aussie riders can also protest against the rising vilification of riders by attending the Last Stand Freedom Ride in Canberra on December 1 and state-based rallies on December 7.


Canberra rally organiser Dale Maggs says we “need to change the perception by police and media that all riders are bad guys”.

  1. This has been going on as long as i have been riding, in fact
    it has not been near as bad in recent years as the 70’s and
    80’s when you could just about guarantee to be pulled over
    for a warrant check every time you went out, And refusal
    of entry to venues was often the norm rather than the exception
    If you are not in an outlaw club ditch the vest and badges you just
    look stupid anyway.If you went to catch a plane dressed as bin laden you
    could probably expect more attention than the 70 year old
    woman sitting next to you its called profiling and its not
    going away.

  2. Profiling is what all humans do to identify potential risk from other humans. It is a part of the normal and natural defence mechanism that is usually called ‘experience’. Profiling could also be described as Applied Duck Testing ie If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck.
    This is not a one-sided game though as plenty of riders (and various hangers-on) make it a point to vilify the police and governments even to the extent of having FTP / FTG tattooed on their face. There are lots of pots and kettles out there!
    Time for riders to grow up and attempt reasoned and mature dialogue with the official agencies rather than this childish sooking.

  3. Californian police have been profiling riders by stopping, searching and detaining riders without any legal basis.
    I believe we”ve always had this in Australia it’s called a licence check and I’ve never had one driving a car yet could not count the times it has happened on a motorcycle.

  4. Gotta laff at the wannabee tuff guys in their vests with coloured piping on the edges and shiny blank spots where their supporter patches once were.

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