This letter is written in opposition to LD 453 — pending legislation in Augusta that would mandate helmet use for all motorcycle riders.
Maine is a great place to ride a motorcycle, and the experience is significantly enhanced on a nice summer day with the wind on your hair. Why do some of the politicians want to deprive people of that opportunity? With today’s hectic lifestyle, most motorcyclists ride less than they wish. Thus, when sunshine and some free time happen to arrive on the same day, it is all the more heavenly. Why would the Legislature want to diminish that experience? To what end?
Those who would impose their will on others offer the same, tired arguments about injuries, medical costs and insurance premiums. In the abstract, they are likely correct. However, until such time that a specific cash reduction in paid health insurance premiums can be calculated and guaranteed by proponents in conjunction with passage of the law, it should be defeated.
A helmet is neither a seatbelt nor an airbag. Any mishap on a bike presents serious trouble for the rider, with injury as a probable outcome, whether or not a helmet is being worn. If legislators are concerned about medical costs and motorcycles, the more logical approach would be an outright ban on motorcycles.
The bottom line here is that life is not without risk, and bikers are already free to wear a helmet at any time.
Keep Maine pro-choice, and let those who ride decide.
Scott G. Cole, Bethel

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