It would be a terrible loss if iconic motorcycle cafes such
as the Ace Cafe in London were axed under the spreading
powers of “association laws”.
But that could be the case if hoons continue to pull
wheelies or do burnouts at such locations where they have a
ready-made and appreciative audience.
Police in Brent have threatened the historic biker haunt,
the Ace Cafe, with closure as part of new powers under the
Anti-Social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014. It allows
them to close any venues that encourage anti-social
Like a virus, these sorts of unfair
“association laws are spreading throughout the Western world
and pretty soon we could be facing the loss of similar
venues because of the actions of a few.
Some venues are now refusing to serve people wearing certain
items of clothing that may be considered liable to encourage
anti-social behaviour on their premises. In Queensland,
under the draconian VLAD Act, venues face massive fines if
they allow entry to people wearing the “colours” of a
declared criminal motorcycle club.
Even in the US, where freedom is every second word, there
are signs in lots of venues that bar people from wearing
gang “colours”. Even at the world’s largest motorcycle rally
in Sturgis, motorcycle colours are banned.
The British law and the Queensland law are
different, but both are wrong.
The Queensland law – and many of these arbitrary signs
banning people wearing “colours” – are wrong because they
vilify someone for what they wear, not for doing something
wrong. It’s profiling at its worst.
The British law cracks down on the offence, but it punishes
the innocent – the venue and its guiltless patrons.
It is our responsibility to resist association laws like
these which vilify and punish innocent people. Motorcycle
riders are a minority and an easy target, so we need to be
However, we also need to pull into line those riders who, by
their actions, give us all a bad name.