Cowboy or Indian?

Growing up I always loved westerns and from a very early age I had western guns and rifles, I would sit watching Gun fight at the OK Corral with my guns in pieces cleaning and polishing them like therapy and lovingly put them back together with the skill of a gunsmith (I was 7). As I write this down I have just realized that this has shaped my life more than a grown man should admit! Having loved cowboys all my life (not in a Brokeback mountain way) I realised that it was how they lived there lives and conducted themselves just like the samurai of Japan , sometimes lawless , sometimes honourable but using right and wrong and making a judgement. Gunslingers, as the term suggests they used a duel type confrontation to decide the outcome of a disagreement not unlike Miyamoto Musashi, Sometimes they were sought out to see if they were as good as people said they were leading to legend like statues. If you forgive the pun was a double edged sword, the more they wanted to not fight the more people wanted to test them; Musashi stopped using a live blade because he was killing people then killed more people with a bokken (Wooden sword) than he did with live blade. (Drifted into Japan again note to self; stick on topic) Famous lawmen such as Wyatt Earp and his family trying to make the west less wild have been pasted down from generation to generation and played out in cinemas , streets and in the hearts of every kid’s that had heard the stories . Wyatt must have been made of an Iron clad will and stubbornness to go to lawless towns and try to get order when kill or be killed was the order of the day. No matter what was said and passed on about their most famous gun fight at the O K Corral. It would have taken a certain type of character to go to these places and try and end the lawlessness knowing that they would be not welcome by some people and would have to fight on a daily basis until they made the town safe for decent folks to go about their lives with less fear. This to me sends a strong moral message, someone has to be willing to stand up for the people that can’t or too afraid to, for this they are hero’s in my eyes. I am not saying they were perfect because I know that they had their flaws but everyone has! Indians I have always loved the Native American way of life, I used to read and re-read an old time life leather bound book (that an ex-girlfriend still has …Bitch) all about how they followed the buffalo for food and how they lived their life in harmony with the earth and nature. They followed natural laws, using all of the buffalo from the meat to the hide, to the inners to the bones and treating the animal with respect unlike the people that slaughtered these amazing creatures for just their hide, not unlike what is happening in the seas at the moment with industrial fishing killing the way of life of the small fishermen eventually they will have to change their livelihood as it will die out like the native American’s way of life. Native American, that’s a joke in one statement, everyone goes on about the African American and how badly they were treated by so called civilized people and that is true they were treated very badly but not many people give thought about the Native American’s meaning they were there first there but have been treated just as badly if not worse. If any nation went into a country and killed millions of people take their land and their historical rights and laws then box them up and keep them in a safe place (reservation) other countries would be not happy to say the least but a group of people that went to America did this and justified their actions by saying they were fighting savages, If someone wanted to take my way of life away from me and watch my friends and family starve and die I would fight with all my spirit to stop this. (Watch out estate agents) there is a quote that sums this up “History is what three people have agreed upon” they just did not ask the Native Americans. I love how the Indians lived with the earth and followed natural laws , using plants for food and medicine fishing for what they needed not what they could , working with the seasons not against them so they had to follow the right way or they would have no food they would die of hunger or illness . There was a simple beauty in the way they lived even growing up family life had an order everyone had their role to play from the babies to elders, even down to the naming of the children by things or events that happened or when the birth took place (could you see that happening in North Shields, I could not even write the names down here lol). It is a strange thing that I have a high moral code but defend the weak, I hate injustice and people that go out to harm other people or use underhanded tactics. I love being close to nature and the freedom that gives you stealing the energy of the landscape or the sea , I try my best to heal those that are sore or injured as I can’t stand people going about in pain when I could help ( even if it is listening to them ) because not all pains are visible. I love my family and friends and will protect them until I die (no such thing as over protective) I would like to live my life in a peaceful fashion but I will fight for what I believe in! So I will be playing cowboys and Indians for the rest of my life Peace John Atkin

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