I've heard a lot of different people who I consider to be reasonably intelligent human beings say the stupidest shit as to why they don't wear a helmet when riding their motorcycle. They say things like "it obstructs my vision," "the weight of the helmet can break your neck," or "helmets won't help much in most crashes." All false. All stupid.
Every time I hear one of these things I cringe. I have yet to hear a good argument against wearing a helmet. The bottom line is that people either don't like them or think they don't look cool if they wear a helmet.
The fact is if you don't wear a helmet when riding you look stupid and are an idiot. Every time I see someone riding without a helmet. I think to myself that that's the last time I'll see them. Riding without a helmet is dumb. Plain and simple.
Don't take my word for it. There're tons of studies out there that extol the virtues of wearing a helmet. Hell, people all seem to be able to agree that bicycle riders should wear helmets, so how does the script flip when it comes to motorcycles?
Reports Show Helmets Save Thousands of Lives
The National Highway Transportation Safety Association reported in 2013 that over 1,600 people were saved by the use of motorcycle helmets and the number would have been much higher if more states had mandatory helmet laws.
In addition to that, there's a 2012 Government Accountability Office report that shows that in states where helmets are optional 59 percent of riders killed were not wearing helmets. This is opposed to 8 percent of riders who were killed in states that have mandatory helmet laws.
The "It's My Personal Choice" Argument
Personally, I don't want to make people wear helmets. I just wish they would wise up and put the damn thing on. I get the whole personal choice argument. I wish it held up when you dig a little deeper because I'm all for people making their own decisions, even stupid ones.
The fact is when people die because they didn't have a helmet on, it has a negative impact on society, motorcycling's image and medical and insurance rates, tax dollars and more. I don't want to have to pay for your stupid decisions and you shouldn't have to pay for mine. Wear a helmet. It could save your life and save others money and heartache.
What are your thoughts on motorcycle helmets? Leave a comment below.