Dealing with intimidating students
Several were quoted, somewhat derisively, as saying: “That rape charge against our guys is phony and it won’t stick.” It turned out to be true, but that was another story and certainly no headliner.
The difference between the Hell’s Angels in the paper and the Hell’s Angels for real is enough to make a man wonder what newsprint is for.
The answer is that nothing has changed except that a few people calling themselves the Hell’s Angels have a new sense of identity and importance. In 1962, the state listed 4,121 traffic deaths, up from 3,839 in 1961.
After two weeks of intensive dealings with the Hell’s Angels phenomenon, both in print and in person, I’m convinced the net result of the general howl and publicity has been to obscure and avoid the real issues by invoking a savage conspiracy of bogeymen and conning the public into thinking all will be “business as usual” once this fearsome snake is scotched, as it surely will be by hard and ready minions of the Establishment. Lynch’s own figures, California’s true crime picture makes the Hell’s Angels look like a gang of petty jack rollers. Drug arrest figures for 1964 showed a 101 percent increase in juvenile marijuana arrests over 1963, and a recent back-page story in the San Francisco Examiner said, “The venereal disease rate among [the city’s] teen-agers from 15-19 has more than doubled in the past four years.” Even allowing for the annual population jump, juvenile arrests in all categories are rising by 10 per cent or more each year.
Probably the most universal common denominator in identification of Hell’s Angels is generally their filthy condition.
One was completely nude and the other had on only a torn sweater.” Some 300 Hell’s Angels were gathered in the Seaside-Monterey area at the time, having convened, they said, for the purpose of raising funds among themselves to send the body of a former member, killed in an accident, back to his mother in North Carolina.The Attorney General’s report was colorful, interesting, heavily biased and consistently alarming–just the sort of thing, in fact, to make a clanging good article for a national news magazine. Newsweek led with a left hook titled “The Wild Ones,” Time crossed right, inevitably titled “The Wilder Ones.” The Hell’s Angels, cursing the implications of this new attack, retreated to the bar of the De Pau Hotel near the San Francisco waterfront and planned a weekend beach party. Hell’s Angels do not normally read the news magazines.“I’d go nuts if I read that stuff all the time,” said one.Most of the cyclists are harmless weekend types, members of the American Motorcycle Association, and no more dangerous than skiers or skin divers.But a few belong to what the others call “outlaw clubs,” and these are the ones who–especially on weekends and holidays–are likely to turn up almost anywhere in the state, looking for action.
Just below the wing of the emblem are the letters “MC.” Over this is a band bearing the words “Hell’s Angels.” Below the emblem is another patch bearing the local chapter name, which is usually an abbreviation for the city or locality.