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Know the West

'In perfect cadence with my heartbeat'

  Dear HCN,

Tom Reed's article about how life is tough in Wyoming (HCN, 4/13/98) spoke in perfect cadence with my own heartbeat. There are not many of us left; the "Westerners," like the bighorn sheep and the mule man, are singing that sad and forlorn refrain of a vanishing time.

Up until a few years ago, Idaho was like Wyoming, an old Western state with mule men, buckaroos, sourdoughs, etc. Then we changed our religion and became "greenback" worshippers. We hired California and Yankee developers to be our state and local leaders and immediately began our own destruction. None of our lakes, rivers, deserts or mountains are now free from modern pollution. Resorts, condominiums, noisy vehicles, trash and wandering, lost dudes are everywhere. We can't blame the dudes for wanting to come here and we would even welcome them with Western hospitality if only they would leave behind their silly, soft-bellied and destructive lifestyles.

We can only blame ourselves, of course; we were royally duped by the bogus concept of happiness - rapid economic growth. Here is another thought, Tom Reed - years ago our grandfathers did the same sort of thing to the Sioux and Cheyenne, so maybe we have it coming. Justice does come around sooner or later.

I can hear the old chiefs saying: "Now you know." Will we, too, wind up on reservations or concentration camps? Keep trying, Tom; maybe Wyoming still has a chance. She's the last cowboy stop. Good luck.

Mont M. Warner

Boise, Idaho

P.S. I hope the old mule man got his bighorn sheep.