Cowboys and Cops ...changes are coming for you...wanna ride?
It's the “cowboy way”...independent and strong, persistent in all weather and innovative by design. Answering the demand for knowledge of livestock and the land, educated most importantly by experience, the cowboys of the Western USA have managed the animals under their care the best they can to produce products, whether milk, meat or fiber.
Every cowboy will tell you that two or three good horses are essential to his work. They are an essential tool to do a job: traveling across miles of plains or desert, accounting for and moving hundreds, if not thousands, of livestock (usually cattle), checking on water and grass supplies, and keeping bulls, cows and their calves, heifers and steers all circulating across the landscape season to season, utilizing grasses and other plants to produce pounds of beef. Is a horse a good companion? In all the ways they need to be, yes. They are good listeners, compliant enough to give up instead of fight, easy to boss around and are all around the best animal for the job at hand. Do cowboys love their horses? Of course...they can't be a good cowboy without a good horse or two.
The best cowboys don't keep up the gates or fences or fix the water lines--those jobs are best handled by other hired help in order to keep his expertise focused on his business: cattle. He often settles into a career in one region, living where he works and working where he lives. There is a confidence and pride in knowing his work, and getting it done...consistently.
Keeping a companion and kids around is absolutely a secondary notion to many cowboys. Many would easily choose their horses over a woman's presence, especially when it's a busy time of year on the ranch. Oh, women are fine and necessary and beautiful...that's for sure. Keeping the cows moving, the horses healthy, the truck and trailer in good repair and all the tack well-oiled is of primary importance--these things keep the cowboy world in order.
While there are plenty of "traditional" cowboys still out there on the range with their bits and spurs, it is undeniable how some revolutionary thinking and action has truly brought some cowboys and horses in to more of a partnership than a slave-owner relationship. It would never have come to pass if it wasn't happier for everyone. Reimagining what "control" means, we are educating and encouraging humans to get creative, and allowing horses to move into their power by providing for their basic needs. "All those years getting smart about doing things the cowboy way...if only I knew then what I know now..." Fixing up the occasional broken fence, repairing a leaky pipe and honoring a woman on par with ones horses becomes possible.
Moving into a new reality doesn't dwell on how things used to be, it celebrates how amazing things are now...the ride we never thought possible wasn't possible, until now.
Calling the cops is a cry for help...when you're unable to handle the situation, if things are escalating out of control, or when you're life or livelihood or property are facing damage or extinction, calling for help is a desperate and critical moment. Cops in the USA swear an oath to our Constitution...a set of laws and guidelines on what's allowed, and what's right and wrong. They are theoretically trained as experts in handling human psychological issues born from stress. Being authoritative when called is intended to reduce conflicts of all kinds, taking control of the situation to preserve life and property.
The most important tools of the trade for cops are their wits. Sure, there's vehicles, helicopters, handcuffs, guns, and big groups of cops, but none of these ensure a safe conclusion to a situation more than compassion for people and the personal will to stay cool and confident. What kind of experience does it take to do such a job well? Is a lifetime long enough to get good at caring about people in the worst situations you can imagine? How does having an authority granted you by a government affect how you treat those you vow to protect?
The notion of "good guys" and "bad guys" has permeated our infant culture here in the USA. The use of police power couples very well with a side dish of a human hunger for control. Authority naturally creates a foundation and modus operandi of a "power trip", and so it is understandable why police behavior, tactics and operations have become increasingly oppressive, especially where a disdain for authority exists. We have produced an environment that questions authority and cries out for equality while demanding protection from cops operating with a fierce compulsion to wield control over others. Cops on power trips are running smack up against our yearning to be heard as we are held down by economic and social systems designed to consolidate a broader scope of power into the hands of those in government.
Here, the arrangement is to create a reality of the Fox family dynasty watching over the chicken house, with no responsibility to keep it too safe. More sinister yet is witnessing gangs of foxes battling for control over chicken health, feeding and procreation. By design, the chickens are expected to get along with minimal support as they cannibalize their own, oblivious to the foxes overarching scheme. While the chickens attempt to govern and take care of themselves, members of the flock continue to be slaughtered in the name of maintaining order by rogue predators hungry for their next power trip buffet. The chickens are cackling and crowing louder than ever, seeing through the twisted wires of their makeshift environmental constraints, with a resolve born from several generations of use and abuse.
The way out of this reality involves creating another one that fundamentally values our vital connections, supports and educates everyone in the values of freedom and justice, and then rigorously pursues accountability. A different reality doesn't speak of predator and prey relationships, nor breed or family lineage. We are not foxes and chickens, we are human. The predators of the old or current system cannot be expected to imagine, let alone create liberty and justice for all. Playing by those old rules, the most stubborn of predators are ultimately hunted down, cornered, and eliminated.
Where are the reformed government leaders that must invite representatives from every corner of the country to the table for some serious discussions on policies rooted in foundational educational programs, lifting people up and never kicking them down? Recognizing and honoring what humans need to feel safe becomes your starting point. Restructuring law enforcement becomes one critical part of pursuing a reality that does more than just claim liberty and justice for all--it nurtures and allows for it to Be this way, by design.
For more to read on happy horse and human stuff, check out my book, “Insight to Equus”, available here on www.insighttoequus.com.