The California Assembly's action in approving a bill making it mandatory to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle brings both good news and bad news. The good news is that many more bikers will now remain alive to keep roaring down our highways. The bad news is that a large supply of human organs will no longer be available for medical transplants.
The Stanford University Hospital alone was able to perform more than 60 heart transplants during 1986, which is an average of one every six days. This was far in excess of any expectation they had when they started the heart transplant program, and the bulk of these donor organs all came from motorcyclists who were riding their bikes without helmets.
The 150 Hell's Angels who were protesting the passage of the bill in front of the Capitol were undoubtedly not aware that they were protesting for the benefit of their fellow men, but it is still not morally right that some must die needlessly in order that others may live.
CHARLES A. BAUSBACK