Sons of Anarchy is one of the best shows of the last decade with iconic characters that will stand the test of time. The Gulf Coast Outlaws is hoping that the general population will not stereotype all MCs with the behavior of Jax and his crew.
According to a report on Yahoo!, during this holiday season Outlaws’ members have collected more than 1,000 coats at their Navarre (Fla.) clubhouse and also raised $2,300 to fund Christmas celebrations for families that have fallen on hard times.
“I think the ‘Sons of Anarchy’ generation really put a damper on people’s view of the motorcycle club and kind of gave them a falsified perception of things,” said Gulf Coast Outlaws member Preston Perry. “The Outlaws, as a whole, have always been big at giving out to the community. We are very aware of the people who are suffering and in need. With all of us in the Panhandle coming together and being on the same page, we just figured we got this many bodies, how can we help people out?
“Wintertime is a struggle for a lot of people, just like the holidays, and what better way to help people out than putting a coat on their back?”
Perry, who is known as “Gorilla,” said that while they certainly fit the look or typical motorcycle clubs, they want to be known for more than that.
The group — like many others — does wear leather jackets with its Outlaw MC emblem on them. The logo, also pretty stereotypical, has a skull with red eyes set against a pair of crossing motorcycle pistons.
“We like people thinking whatever they are going to think, but at the end of the day, we are giving back and doing things that other people aren’t,” he added. “So let them think what they want.”
According to the Yahoo! report, the coats they collected will be distributed to four organizations across three Florida counties. Outlaws plan to take coats to two spots in Escambia County, Heavenly Blessings Mission in Pensacola and Montclair Elementary School. Family Promise of Santa Rosa in Milton and Children in Crisis in Okaloosa County also will receive a share of the coats.
The story added that about 10 to 15 motorcycle club chapters spread across Northwest Florida helped collect the coats, including the Outlaws and their “support clubs,” the Southern Saints, Overlords and Brothers United.
Merrick Johnson, of the Jacksonville Outlaws chapter, drove six hours to the Panhandle to contribute to the good work his fellow club members were doing in Navarre.
“Every chapter does something for the community to give back, and we really do care about the community and everything. We care about having a strong relationship with it and just giving back,” said Johnson, who goes by the nickname “Slowpoke.” “We make a good enough amount of money off everything so we can give back to the community.”
Like Perry, Johnson said many members of motorcycle clubs are misunderstood… mainly because of what people have been told to expect from SoA, Mayans, and other movies and television shows.
“It doesn’t mean we go out and sell drugs and rape and pillage,” he said. “It just means we live on a different beat than normal people, and people want to look down on that because it’s not the society standard, but that’s just how we live.”
The story, in full, is on Yahoo!… you can read it here.