Heroes of hypocrisy

I was talking helmet laws with a mate the other day (I hadn’t brought it up I promise) and his contention was, it should be legal to ride without a helmet just so long as when you turn up and A&E you don’t expect the same care other people get.

Problem with this sort of logic (apart from being a non-cyclists vision of cycling where the dangers are heightened the benefits ignored) is that it will eventually lead to some kind of hypocrisy. To wit, despite the fact that I sometimes ride without a helmet I’m probably less likely to be a burden on the health care system than he because I keep in good (okay…decent) shape and he likes a beer or three. (Mind you, I play soccer, which according to the insurance companies is far more dangerous than cycling. Insurance companies measure risk rather than assume it and they dont care whether I cycle or not. The soccer makes them a little nervous.)

I’ve seen this kind of prejudice pop up time and again and have been guilty of it many times myself. So what I’m proposing is we conquer our prejudice and become heroes of hypocrisy.

I have a close mate who thinks obese and/or smoking people should also have health care limited to them. Problem he’s a motorcyclist. I know how dangerous motorcycling is because I did it for well over a decade. Didn’t own a car in fact. How I could have expected a leather jacket to protect my fragile body at 150km/hr (“I was going how fast officer?”) is beyond me. If cow hide was enough to protect you from road trauma then surely every cow would own a motorbike. It’s massive fun.

This cow’s having too much fun. Courtesy Mbike.

So if you want to maximize your hypocrisy, my advise is to find some kind of minority (non-helmeted cyclists) or majority (obese Australians) and prejudice their health care based on their activities. Or you could think about your lack of brakes, your narrow handlebars, your skinny jeans, and give the [insert prejudice here…tubby butterballs, smokers, motorcyclists, hang-gliders, beer drinkers, amphetamine takers, bingo grannies…] a break. The point of being in a society is not to reduce every risk to its boring minimum but to support those who break down and fail in the attempt. Where would $50 fares to Melbourne be if the Wright brothers hadn’t risked their stupid necks with a primitive hang glider?

Famous for trailblazing human flight, the Wright brothers also knocked out some keen looking fixieis in the 1890s.

I vow to avoid hypocrisy by taking in every kind of risk taking activity. I might even try disagreeing with the wife and see where that gets me. I challenge you to vow to fight hypocrisy by being THE person who represents everything that everybody else thinks is wrong. It’s simple. To be a hero of hypocrisy, you should, in the words of the Union 13, bust your own bones with some style. Ya know? You already own the bike, now get out there and go bust it big time.

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