Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by M1MRB, Feb 28, 2021.
That's an awesome quote, Sean.
This thread is awesome! It's like an 80 meter "I own this frequency" discussion heard across America every night! It's a shining light on a hill of how well we get along in Ham Radio and its on the web forever! We want to protect our ideas and individuality, we want to protect our no code/no test/no video game hobby. A national organization is going to make lots of people mad at some point because it can't represent us all at the same time. The ARRL can't set up its online available publications so that its own blind members can read them, it takes 3 months for the audio version to reach a blind operator ears.
Blind ARRL operators make up a very small portion of its membership and pay less dues. Subsidies for younger operators by the organization might bring in some new operators to get licensed but for many of us on the fringes of the socioeconomic society we may not be able to afford the new rig or the ten year old rig that's priced close to what it originally cost while on sale on ebay or here.
This hobby on the surface appears to be a rich persons hobby. While the barriers to entry aren't a $50 exam fee or the purchase price of a cheap Boafeng rig to open a repeater no one will answer you on. It might be that the barrier to entry could be Me and my attitude towards newcomers and those who pass the test and don't have a clue how to tune a radio or make a contact. Maybe it should be Me after the VE session teaching and demonstrating radio use and maybe it could be you. When was the last time you loaned a rig to someone who was studying for the test or recently passed it. When was the last time I did that? Radio has always been about personal interaction with another operator. Many of us would not be on the air today if it wasn't for dirty CB radio operators or Ham Appliance operators who demonstrated in a good natured way that learning about radio didn't have to be about my four 50ft towers and $10,000 radio and my new MFJ ball cap and jacket but can be as simple as a shortwave radio and a dipole and the excitement of a good solar cycle. As old guys over 40 reach out to those who are coming into the hobby bring them over for a socially distant get on the radio session. See if you can spare a rig from the racks of them on the wall to give to someone interested so that can learn while making mistakes how to tune a radio on USB and learn the best times to hear different stations from across the world. (keep the microphone at home to preserve the tubes if necessary) Individually we can do more than a national organization can do because we can look someone in the eye and convey the excitement and passion and opinion we have here and on 80 meters and do it with a smile for the love of Ham Radio
Well this hobby is indeed progressive. We haven't used spark gap transmitters for decades. And rightfully so.
I too was heckled, by a club in another state when I lived there, about being a no code person. I pointed out that I took the test authorized by the FCC. I am an amateur extra class now. With a call sign I like.
And I thought I was grouchy.
I agree, Chip, that the referenced comment is rather unfair. John de Lancie did nothing wrong.
I quit the ARRL back in 1993 because of my opposition to some issues. Before email was popular, I mailed my objections and asked for more information on how they came to the conclusions on their efforts. I never got a response on several letters. I contacted ARRL Headquarters, my district leader and Section Manager. No one responded to my views so I assume my letters made file 13 and they didn't care about responding to someone that paid dues to the ARRL. If you don't agree with them, or maybe even agree with their positions, so I decided not to support ARRL because they don't care enough to respond to a member. Besides, why should I write out a check to an organization that does not have my same views. Simple, I quit them.
That is the basic summary of why I dropped my membership just before the N6AA Censure bologna. They do have a touch of that elite, support us because "we are all you have" ego. And that rubs me the wrong way. Don't forget to factor in that incessant begging for money for spectrum defense and other stuff that fills the mailbox regularly.
I'll admit I am not the normal ham or person. I live modestly, have zero interest in contesting, emcomm, etc. I am more into the technical aspects than the actual operation of the radios. While I am not as active as I used to be, no matter I'll always feel strongly for the hobby as a great experience that I want others (specifically younger versions like me) to enjoy and learn from.
Toward my final membership days I was evaluating how they represent my views. I've been very vocal over the years with the FCC directly and through the league on a number of regulator issues that I feel need revamping to remain relevant. What I noticed was I wasn't seeing any of the elected ARRL directors representing my views in FCC filings. In fact I almost never saw them make any comments themselves. I wasn't even sure how at that time (I have seen some bios now), how I was supposed to vote without some sort of track record to show me how they feel on things etc.
The censure issue kind of drove home the floating theory I had prior that this is a good old boys club.
I have seen some promising comments more recently. Like the claimed "support of youth and STEM initiatives to expand broad interest in radio technology and radio communications." I'm not ready yet to rejoin the bandwagon, the proof will be in the pudding.
Oh please!! I just read the April issue of QST. On page 59 I learned that 20m is the "queen of the DX bands". On page 118 I learned that cats are a ham's best friend. Clearly, the ARRL is a raging bastion of flaming conservatism!!! Time for a subscription to CQ.