I am an advocate for motorcycles. I can't help it, I was raised on them. After my 9+ hour drive to Jersey yesterday I have made some observations and feel obligated to share. Motorcycle riders fall into three distinct categories (For the record yes, my background makes this a bias observation and I will not apologize for that.)
Group 1: Serious Travel Riders
This is the group that my father belongs to. These bikers are serious about riding. They often have trailers that they pull behind their bikes (as my dad does) to carry all their stuff on cross-country trips. These bikes are essentially thinner convertible cars. They are huge, I mean huge but you would never know they are coming because they are so quiet. These drivers act the same way that car drivers act mostly because they take up about the same amount of space.
Group 2: Weekend Riders
This is the group that my mom belongs to. She drives a Shadow Aero around town on the weekends, rolls around town having fun, but isn't going to go across country on her bike. These riders generally obey traffic rules, especially in congestion. They recognize that they are smaller and that the SUV will crush them. Their advantage/defense is that they are noisier than the touring bikes so you at least know they are around.
Group 3: Crotch Rocket Assholes
Clearly I had some bad experiences yesterday. But seriously, haven't we all seen these assholes weave in between cars, ride the dotted line and drive like a bat out of hell down the street for no reason and shake our heads at their stupidity? These riders think they are invincible, that traffic laws don't apply to them and that they can do as they damn well please because they are small and fast. It should be no surprise that sport bikes have twice the death rate as cruisers, standard and touring bikes. On my drive yesterday I watched three CRA (Crotch Rocket Assholes) weave between cars, split, left/right/left around cars at mind-blowing speeds. Later in the day I watched another CRA ride the dotted line while everyone else was stuck in traffic due to a serious accident. That being said, I would like to give some accolades to one CRD (driver) who saw the CRA who rode the dotted line. This gentleman obeyed the traffic laws, threw his hands up in the air and shook his head at the other rider in disbelief. I'm not saying there are no responsible drivers of these bikes, but when I see you I assume you are an asshole until you prove differently.
There is your generalization of motorcycles on the road. Remember people, knowledge is power...