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Meh.
No respect from me. We need to stop worshipping criminals in this country.
I feel the same. No disrespect intended for Sonny, I have a live and let live mentality but what one does with their life can affect the lives of others around them. In an ideal world we leave more behind than we harvest. Okay, stepping off my soapbox.
 

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In terms of pure workmanship, personally I don't like Harleys. I ride them because I'm in the club, and that's the image, but if I could I would seriously consider riding a Honda ST1100 or a BMW. We really missed the boat not switching over to the Japanese models when they began building bigger bikes. I'll usually say "F Harley-Davidson." – Ralph "Sonny" Barger, Hell's Angel [46]
 

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I have to fall into the camp of those who see his life as one where his own benefit came at the expense of others - ANY others. By the time Altamont occurred, there should have been no question in anyone's mind. It's only been 50+ years since then, so maybe historical perspective takes time (OK, snide remarks done).

I know 'bikers', including patched riders. I know (many) 'motorcyclists'. I know 'riders' - including many whose skill and dedication to the sport I deeply respect. I treat them all courteously, unless I have a specific reason not to. There are members of each group whom I respect and a somewhat smaller group, again with members from each group, that I am proud to call friends.

Sonny would not make any of these lists; I (briefly) 'met' him once, and know OF him much more than I know him. My motto, however, is "Deeds, not words" - and based on the deeds, this man damaged our motorcycling community far more than he helped anyone.
 

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Indian Chieftain Ltd 2018
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I don't know him. Nor do I want to. I know my micro-fair-share of that scene. Just enough to not be involved.
R.I.P for being a human.
...and I bet most who talk about him, didn't know him either.
cheers.
 

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Meh.
No respect from me. We need to stop worshipping criminals in this country.
Nor any man for that matter. Don’t know what was in his heart on his passing. Jesus told a common criminal “You shall live with me in paradise” shortly before he died. Never met the man. Although I knew several who met him and said he was actually a pretty personable guy.. About 42 years ago, in my darker period lol, I was actually a guest at the “81” club house in Oakland. Sonny and Waylon Jennings were rumored to be arriving but never did. If I remember correctly Sonny had just gotten out of prison but was in is a court battle to not get locked up again. It was the 1st time i ever heard the term RICO Act.
 
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Story time...

Back in 2010, there was only 1 Victory dealer here, in AZ. It was in an old Buddy Stubbs HD dealership, called Arizona Victory. I bought my 2010 XC there. I would visit regularly for accessories and routine maintenance. One day, a biker showed up who was obviously an old school biker. About a foot shorter than me, faded tattoos, and something in his throat that he used to talk with. His leather vest covered in pins and patches, I knew he had been riding longer than I have been alive. We did not formally introduce ourselves, but we talked bikes for about an hour or before he left. He rode a custom Victory Vision. He was at the dealer getting a XC customized for his daughter. He explained how he made the switch from HD to Victory, how that upset just about everyone he rode with. Its a better bike he would say, why he made he switch. He was very nice and polite. Not 1 curse word. We shook hands, wished each a safe ride and he departed. The sales manager runs out, asks me if I knew who I was talking to. I said no. Proceeds to tell me I was talking to Sonny Barger. I laughed and said BS. Anyone who has ridden a bike in the last 50 years has heard that name and his misdeeds. There was no way in hell that little old man was Sonny Barger. When I got home, I perused the interwebs for him. Damn. That really was him. Read his wiki and other articles about his life. Complete opposite of what I expected when I met him. I saw him a few more times at the dealer. Always remembered me and was friendly. After the dealer moved, never saw him again. Pleasure to meet and talk to him. RIP Mr. Barger
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Meh.
No respect from me. We need to stop worshipping criminals in this country.
Maybe, if you're lucky the HAs will erect a statue of him. Then you can pull it down;)
 

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Sadly, I feel nothing about this. Any more than I would've felt anything positive if someone had posted noting the passing of Lucky Luciano or Frank Calabrese or John Gotti.

He lived his life his own way, and a long one at that, but much of it was involved in criminal activity.

I am sure that many of you have some reason to believe that he did provided something positive to the motorcycle community. I, respectfully, have to disagree.
 

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2020 Indian Scout Jade Green and Thunder Black
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Story time...

Back in 2010, there was only 1 Victory dealer here, in AZ. It was in an old Buddy Stubbs HD dealership, called Arizona Victory. I bought my 2010 XC there. I would visit regularly for accessories and routine maintenance. One day, a biker showed up who was obviously an old school biker. About a foot shorter than me, faded tattoos, and something in his throat that he used to talk with. His leather vest covered in pins and patches, I knew he had been riding longer than I have been alive. We did not formally introduce ourselves, but we talked bikes for about an hour or before he left. He rode a custom Victory Vision. He was at the dealer getting a XC customized for his daughter. He explained how he made the switch from HD to Victory, how that upset just about everyone he rode with. Its a better bike he would say, why he made he switch. He was very nice and polite. Not 1 curse word. We shook hands, wished each a safe ride and he departed. The sales manager runs out, asks me if I knew who I was talking to. I said no. Proceeds to tell me I was talking to Sonny Barger. I laughed and said BS. Anyone who has ridden a bike in the last 50 years has heard that name and his misdeeds. There was no way in hell that little old man was Sonny Barger. When I got home, I perused the interwebs for him. Damn. That really was him. Read his wiki and other articles about his life. Complete opposite of what I expected when I met him. I saw him a few more times at the dealer. Always remembered me and was friendly. After the dealer moved, never saw him again. Pleasure to meet and talk to him. RIP Mr. Barger
They say…

“It’s never too late to mend!”

(Personally, … I’m working on it, I’m working on it!)
 

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2016 chief dark horse
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In terms of pure workmanship, personally I don't like Harleys. I ride them because I'm in the club, and that's the image, but if I could I would seriously consider riding a Honda ST1100 or a BMW. We really missed the boat not switching over to the Japanese models when they began building bigger bikes. I'll usually say "F Harley-Davidson." – Ralph "Sonny" Barger, Hell's Angel [46]
In 2008 he showed up a run riding a victory bagger. When ever I get home I’ll find the pictures
 
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