SC ABATE State Meeting: 11-7-03
A Free State
After meeting Fast Fred, Dandy, and Father Time at the Sons of Liberty Riders TEA Party in Tennessee back in September, I decided that I needed to get more involved with these freedom fighters from our sister state. So, first thing I did was join South Carolina ABATE. That was the best $15 dollars I have ever spent. I encourage all NC CBA members to consider joining SC ABATE to help share knowledge, best practices and of course expand your brotherhood and sisterhood.
Today I had the opportunity to attend my first SC ABATE state meeting and was very glad I made the trip to Columbia. Not only did I meet many dedicated, legislatively minded, riders. But I was very impressed with the way they "get things done".
It was apparent the moment I pulled up to the meeting location and looked up. Above Panama and Sandy's Tavern was a huge motorcycle awareness billboard. "Look Twice - Save a Life - Motorcycles Are Everywhere". SC ABATE put up 18 of these billboards around SC in 2002 and voted at the meeting to do it again this year. Very impressive to say the least.
I was so motivated by this team, that when Dennis Welborn (LC) spoke about Opening Day at the SC State House, I vowed to take the day off from work and go down there to support them. I encourage all NC riders to consider making the trip to Columbia with me on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 to help our brothers and sisters in SC make the same statement to their legislators, that we want to make to our legislators on May 10, 2004. They too have a right-of-way bill on the calendar and considering how we all lost Sandy Lee in August, this SC bill is long overdue. They also hold a helmet rally every year to remind the SC legislators that they plan to continue to fight to keep it their freedom of choice. This year they had over 600+ members attend their helmet rally. Again, this shows the devotion that these riders have in their hearts.
Since everyone has different legislative techniques and ideas on how to get the job done, I was fortunate enough to pick up new ideas from attending the meeting. The meeting was three hours long and it was very impressive how Fast Fred (State Coordinator) maintained the flow and effeciency of the meeting. Overall, a great experience and I am already looking forward to my next trip down US-1.
I highly recommend visiting the following two web sites to learn more about SC ABATE and to understand how our sister state has remained a free state for the past 20+ years.
SC ABATE Web Site: http://www.abatesc.com/
Fast Fred's Web Site: http://www.fastfreds.com/