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Thread: Case Study: Conservative, evangelical takeover of Western horsemanship

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  1. #1
    I've seen worse. SuperModerator ColoradoGuy's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
    The City Different

    Case Study: Conservative, evangelical takeover of Western horsemanship

    This is a progressive process I've noticed for many years. I've been a horseman my entire life. I come from ranching people, like my Uncle Charles, a rancher in South Dakota, and my grandfather, a life-long horse dealer and trader. Both taught me to rope and ride. I live in New Mexico and help various friends push cattle around the forest on horseback. I'm a fair roper. Now, apparently, we're all supposed to be right-wing Christian evangelicals or we're not real ranching people. My evidence? It's everywhere, and quite depressing. For example, I go to many regional horse shows, where I'm afflicted by calls to Jesus and worse. I have subscribed to the more and more right-wing Western Horseman (established 1937), the main journal in the field, all my life. I'm about ready to cancel my subscription. I've about had it with these people. Now when I walk around a horse show or sales barn I see endless crosses on peoples' hats, huge dangly silver cross earrings, and monster crosses on their belt buckles. And all of these folks are half my age or younger. Where on earth did they come from? Ranching has nothing to do with Jesus. It has a lot to do with water, fencing, and hay fields. But Jesus? Not at all. And, of course, being a registered Democrat I'm an agent of the devil. Or worse.

    The whole process is interesting to me in the way that a particular view of the world can just take over and make other viewpoints invalid. The takeover of the public face of Western ranching by evangelical Christians is a small thing, I suppose. But I notice it and resent it.

    I suspect similar things happen in other areas of life. But this assumption that you can't really rope and ride if you're not a born again evangelical really annoys me. It's enough to make me light up a smoke and crack open a can of beer at 8 AM in front of them just to get their goat. Cowboys have, traditionally, been young guys who drink and whore around as much as possible. But knowing history has never been a strength of these folks.

    Your milage may vary, of course. Photo of me and my trusty horse below. Notice the absence of crosses.

    I know a lesbian couple who run a big ranch south of town. Boy-oh-boy do they blow the minds of the newly born again. Especially because they inherited their ranch from one of the couple's parents, also a lesbian. Does not compute, must be wrong.
    Last edited by ColoradoGuy; 08-28-2015 at 09:59 PM.
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