On Ya Bike – it’s Operation Takeback


Bikie gangs, as in the outlaw motorcycle type, are great. Agreed? No? A couple of yesses? But mostly no, right? Well, perhaps you’re misguided. Been consuming too much mainstream media, haven’t you? Tsk tsk. No, wait, don’t go. Stay, please. I’m going somewhere with this. Clarification: based on what bikie gangs have been up to lately according to the media, I don’t really like them. And nor might most people who keep honest jobs and grudgingly bleed taxes and the ever-proverbial cost of living through their work-worn fingernails. The bastards are basically a bunch of buttholes. Bikies, that is – and yes, also elements of the too dominant centre-right media. Take what happened at the Gold Coast’s swanky Broadbeach area the other day. Hypothetically, if I was a bit of a toff I might have been dining there with my effeminate male frenemies (erm, friends who are enemies, duh) during just another night in my narcissistic bubble of a life. Then, whammo! While taking a sip of an overpriced craft beer and smirking at Peter’s joke about the pitiful lower-class, a brawling group of large, smelly and blanket-tattooed men has gone sprawling across our table – fists a whirlin’. Poor Pete still hasn’t got the beer and blood stains out of his designer jeans. This actually happened. Not to me, but to some Broadbeach toffs and tourists a week or so back. Out, rageous – literally. As in they were out, and in a rage. C’mon, it wasn’t that bad. Aw you’re no fun.

Anyways, the city and state’s media and government quickly reacted to this incident – that basically amounted to a social sewer main bursting into and spilling through the country’s tourist capital – in order to protect the Coast’s flawless, cough, image from being further despoiled. In the days since, a crackdown creatively named Taskforce Takeback has been announced by the police, at the behest of politicians launching five-second sound-bite fire and brimstone from their ivory towers. They’ve been pulling over choppers, raiding bikie dens and generally cracking some rebel skull. Y’know, all that fun cop stuff. But I guess this is as good a point as any for me to explain why I said that bikie gangs are great. It’s because the guys the fuzz are hell-bent on destroying, assuming an absence of corruption, are not, actually, really, totally authentically, bikies. They’re what’s known as Nike Bikies – young, roided up, excessively tattooed thugs, gangsters and standover men who may never have actually ridden anything with two wheels in their likely to be short lives. Hence their distaste for bikin’ boots and love instead for expensive, child-slavery endorsing sneakers. Every Australian town and city has its problems with these guys, but it makes sense the festering pimple their sub-culture is should come to a throbbing whitehead at the Sunburnt Country’s own Sin City – which somewhat ironically is the actual name of an Orchid Ave, Surfers Paradise nightclub probably owned and/or run by bikies.

Understand, I’m not the most pro-establishment guy myself. In fact I reckon this country while doing well economically right now is in danger in the long-term of becoming a right-wing, un-egalitarian, environmentally degraded nightmare. Not to mention cultural backwater. Yet I hope to be proven wrong in my old age. So I kinda sympathise with real bikies. As far as I know the whole outlaw bikie thing came about largely as a result of the Vietnam War. Blokes came back home from being shot at in ‘Nam only to be spat on by hypocritically militant anti-war protesters, and thought: ‘You know what? Fuck it. My government fucked me over, and now my countrymen and women couldn’t give a flying fuck that I put my life at risk to save them from the scourge of Communism.’ (I’d apologise for the language, but it’s unlikely most of these guys are above profanities.) So they grew epic beards, cut the sleeves off their leather jackets, got their mums to stitch a cool club emblem on the back and, most importantly, bought Harleys. Of course they also got inked, but not to the same excess as their young, dumb and full of (s)cum wannabes we’re lately seeing splashed across the news every morning and night. Even if I’m stereotyping with the former, then theirs is still a better cliché than those we’re terming ‘bikies’ these days. Check ‘em out: they probably have no real reason that wasn’t their own fault to rebel against the establishment, they don’t have beards and most of them are probably more likely to name their equally unfortunately dim-witted offspring ‘Harley’, than they are to purchase one. And those fucking head-to-toe tattoo jobs. I remember a while back seeing a Coast one on the news with a swastika on his neck. Please. Word to the wise: it used to just be deeply offensive to get a Nazi tattoo. Nowadays, it’s also in pretty bloody piss-poor taste.

So what do we need to do about this social fungus growing in our otherwise peaceful suburban utopias? Well, nothing, really. We pay the taxes; the cops take out the trash. At least that’s the way it’s s’posed to go. Ultimately while the social filth laps at our comparatively pious doorsteps you should generally understand that it’s not the real bikies we should blame. They aren’t all bad. In fact I recall that they sometimes do charitable things like mass – if often police shepherded – rides in support of such things as anti-child abuse campaigns. Yep, believe it or not, deep beneath the leather, scars, facial hair and glowering countenance of your average bikie dwells a heart of gold. And if you’re concerned they’re selling drugs to your children then, well, perhaps that’s more your fault for not keeping an eye on the brats than it is the poor maligned bikie’s for simply tryin’ to make a fringe-dwellin’ livin’. Then again, perhaps not. Only remember: just as not all Muslims are terrorists; not everyone who claims to be a bikie is authentic about it. More likely, they’re wannabes. Fringe-dwellers among fringe-dwellers. And when you’ve got a society that permits people who are mostly full of shit, with a pinch of evil, to run rampant; perhaps it’s not the fringe that people should be looking at when planning to “Takeback” their community, but the rotten apples at its core. In other words: it’s easy and sometimes right to blame the guy in the gutter; but dismiss blaming the guy who used your money to construct the gutter at your own peril.

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