The open air and miles of asphalt stretch out all across the U.S. Bikers nationwide consider the open road a home away from home and the desire to explore is sometimes described as a spiritual calling. To ride with the wind in your face and be free on the open road is like nothing else.
But, are we truly “free?”
Some in the motorcycle community believe we’ve sold our grandchildren into slavery to a totalitarian government by not being involved in the full spectrum of political debate. One such person is H.W. (Bill) “Sputnik” Strain who founded in 1992 the Texas Motorcycle Rights Association (TMRA2). As State Chairman he describes its purpose as returning Texas to the Representative Republic as envisioned by those who founded the state and this nation. TMRA2 is a member driven association with a pledge to keep motorcycle citizens informed of the daily political happenings in the state and around the nation. They work tirelessly to introduce and pass Bills into law, that are favorable to Texas Citizens and to try and prevent bad Bills from becoming law.
Sputnik is a hard-boiled and fiery mohawked activist who is consider by many to be the Patrick Henry of bikers. A well respected member of the NCOM Legislative Task Force who has been reasonably successful in his home state is now looking to go nationwide to help return our country to the Constitutional Republic as envisioned by our Founding Fathers.
There is an excellent interview in the International Journal of Motorcycle Studies (IJMS) by Darilynn McClure which provides an insightful glimpse of the man behind the “Free” tattoo.
UPDATE: June 28, 2010 — Last Thursday (June 24, 2010) the Texas Motorcycle Rights Association announced that Sputnik, passed away suddenly at approximately 5:00 AM in the morning. Sputnik was 70 years old and passed away in the associations state office. He will go down in history as a great Motorcycle Rights Activist. A memorial service is planned for July 10, 2010.
Photo courtesy of Hamilton Steele.