2011-06-24 10:19:23+0000

I was reading the MCN news feed today and saw this article:

http://www.motorcyclenews.com/MCN/News/newsresults/General-news/2011/June/jun2311-road-safety-charity-dont-buy-your-kids-motorbikes/_/R-EPI-131351

What the hell is wrong with these people?

First, how is teaching a child to ride a motorcycle innapropriate? Surely, learning to ride a complex machine at an earlier age is only going to lead to more qualified riders? I mean, it's the reason Stoner and Rossi are paid to race around Assen and I'm paying to potter around Tremblant.

As for the risk of injuries, that happens any time your kid does anything. They might fall off a climbing frame or a tree. They might get injured crossing the road. Or they might twist an ankle hiking in the woods. Sharp scissors in a craft class? Oh, wait. The nanny-state does want to ban or reduce most of this stuff, doesn't it? There are a million ways kids can hurt themselves and part of ceasing to be a kid is learning to recognize what these dangers are. Or better yet, mastering them so you can go on to become a confient adult.

A few years ago, I went to a camp where they taught kids how to ride. I'm not proud to say I went out with them and was handed my ass on a plate. Worse, when I tried to keep up, I got stupid and injured. It wasn't the kids. They were learning in a safe, controlled environment and moreover, they seemed confident, fearless kids. They weren't reckless and they all seemed elated and what they could accomplish. Surely, teaching them to manage risk while allowing them a sense of accomplishment is a better way to raise kids?

Then again, maybe if kids are banned from riding motorcycles by their parents, they're more likely to rebel when older and buy one anyway?

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