Recently, a Harley Davidson dealership in the Washington DC area announced it was sponsoring a Nation of Islam rally led by Louis Farrakhan on October 10th called “Justice Or Else.” The dealership’s website said it was promoting its location as a rallying point for black bikers attending the rally.Not surprisingly, that didn’t sit too well with other members of the biking community who don’t subscribe to the Nation of Islam’s message.
The dealership, located in Fort Washington, MD is owned by Joyce and Thomas Moorehead who also own a BMW/MINI dealership in Sterling, MD. Thomas Moorehead is the Chairman of the Board of the National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers. The Harley dealership’s general manager, Anderson Morgan, who is also black, was a speaker on a nationwide conference call The Nation of Islam conducted on July 30th for black bikers.In the past few weeks, Louis Farrakhan has given speeches green-lighting violence against white people. As we reported here, in Miami, Florida, Farrakhan called on 10,000 black men to launch violent retaliation against the white man. In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Farrakhan declared that “white people deserve to die.”
Not surprisingly, just days after a website called Stop Hate Crimes posted a story about the event, a group known as 2 Million Bikers, which was holding a 9/11 memorial event at the Fort Washington dealership, announced they were moving to a different dealership in Fairfax, VA.
Subsequently to that, the dealership owner announced he had withdrawn his support for the Farrakhan event, saying in this statement:
When we agreed to allow a group of bikers to use our dealership as a meet-up location prior to the Ride for Justice, as we allow numerous groups to do, it was in no way intended to imply Harley-Davidson of Washington DC sponsored or supports the cause that they represent. It appears that a little “free market justice” had been delivered. Or has it?
Harley Davidson of Washington DC opposes all forms of racial, ethnic or religious prejudice, and we do not discriminate against individuals because of their political views, in theory and in practice, and will continue to do so. We have withdrawn our consent for the bikers to meet here. We are a small business, Harley-Davidson thru and thru. We are in business to sell and service Harleys and to provide a place for our employees to make a living to support their families.
Thomas A. Moorehead, owner Harley-Davidson of Washington DC
Stop Hate Crimes say Moorehead released his statement in the afternoon of September 3rd. However, the official website of the dealership still lists the event. Further the Nation of Islam conducted a conference call on Thursday evening, September 3rd, for black bikers and during the conference call, the dealership was still being advertised as a rallying point for black bikers coming to the Nation of Islam rally.
It remains to be seen whether the free market will prevail in this one, and Harley riders against the support of Farrakhan’s hate speech will be protesting with their wallets.[Note: This article was written by Ashley Edwardson]