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Probably a bulb/ rear brake switch combination. If your front brake switch is working, then half of the bulb is working. No taillight issue, probably a bulb. No rear brake light, probably the rear brake switch. Located on the lower right rear of the frame, behind the exhaust. Check for power on the orange/white wire at switch. If you have that then check for power on the other terminal of the switch while pushing on the pedal. The rear brake switch is hydraulically operated so you must have adequate pressure to activate it.
I take it it does not work foot or hand control. look for your brake light switch right side of frame rail usually a goldish color or silver color. it has two plug in connectors. Unplug and put a test light to them. apply either brake. If the light comes on then you have a bad brake switch. replace it. if you have foot brake and no hand brake light then it would most likely be the brake nipple in the hand switch. but you did not say so I assume no brakes foot or hand.
you should have three wires coming from the light, a ground, a stop and a running. note that leds are diodes and conduct current only one way so if you reverse bias them they will not light up. if you have voltage at the wire from the brake switch, make sure the wires on the light are hooked up correctly. note also, if going through some type of lighting modules that are showing up, you might not be drawing enough current to activate the module in which case you will need to add a load to it which are available. however, being an 82 i doubt you have one. one other thought, if you only have two wires, it might be grounding through the light body and it would need a good connection to you fender.
if you have power at the harness pin but not the light then your problem could be a cut wire grounding to frame between connector and light. you did not say what kind of light you have. a regular filament light check the socket as they sometimes go bad due to vibration, if it is a led light, look for a bad componet on the circuit board like a open resistor or such. if you are handy with a soldering iron, you can repair it pretty cheaply.
Check your wiring for continuity. Mine did the same on the Fatboy - found a broken return wire by the right Handlebar switch when I opened up the switch gear housing on the bars. Bit of solder, heatshrink and good as new! (my problem light was on the right side so check the left side on your first - was a white wire with orange stripe I think, should be easily visible from the indicator switch inside). All the other lights worked fine. Maybe an earthing problem?