Monday, April 27, 2015
Book Review: Twilight of the Outlaws (Nonfiction)
Twilight of the Outlaws
by Donald Charles Davis
$9.99 Kindle version
Some people see a group being harassed by law enforcement and think, "That's their problem...nothing to do with me or my social circle," especially if that group contains individuals who have broken the law. I see a piece of a bigger picture concerning our constitutional rights being dismantled right under our noses.
When I saw that the show, Gangland Undercover, was based on a book by Charles Falco, being a book reviewer, I was curious. However, when I review nonfiction, I make it a point to do my own fact-checking.
I was surprised with what I found (and fairly disgusted as a taxpayer), so I dug further, and my research led me to AgingRebel.com, which is run by no other than the author of Twilight of the Outlaws. I found the "other side" to be rather interesting.
Davis begins with an intro that digs straight into the heart of his book: motorcycle outlaws are real, but they are not the one-size-fits-all stereotype fed to the general public.
Zach Tipton was a husband, father and son, and he was also a patch-holder. He broke the law more than once. Does this mean he deserved to be murdered? As Davis explains, "Outlaws care who you are but they care more that you are who you say you are...Zach Tipton suscribed to that outlaw code. He died for that code and his fatal flaw was a naive and foolish belief that the man who shot him in the head suscribed to that code as well."
What I like about the author's writing style is the way he lays it all out, without sugar-coating any of it. Davis is not just sharing events, but also explaining the dynamics between the motorcycle clubs, as well as their histories - with each other AND with law enforcement.
There is a LOT of information to take in, and, at times, it can be overwhelming (I gave 4 stars instead of 5 for editing issues, such as repetitiveness), but the content is a real eye-opener. Davis often focuses on the behind-the-scenes politics that continue to paint a picture of outlaw bikers as thoughtless, reckless and lawless thugs.
I especially like the way Davis takes U.S. and world events and shows how those events affected the evolution of motorcycle clubs and their members (for example: the Vietnam War).
Even if you have zero-interest in the life of an outlaw biker, I encourage you to read this book for the historical value, if for no other reason. Within these pages, Davis offers a piece of American history that continues to grow within our society.