Little Cowboys and Indians


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Yesterday we played at being the Cowboy or the Indian and the role we took did not matter.  It was just as exciting being the good guy as it was the bad guy.  Did we as the characters even know ourselves who was supposed to be good and who was the bad party?  We played freely and shot arrows with rubber suction cups and used cap guns to attack our opponents.  We yelled and did war whoops and the warm sunny days of summer passed with battle after battle being fought only to be resolved by the tired participants sharing kool-aid and cookies.  When did we stop playing and take up the war for real?  Did all the years of practice hiding behind trees and bushes and attacking without cause really prepare us for the attitudes we have today?

Maybe there are not as many Cowboys and Indians on the playgrounds today as our children have progressed into a new type of warfare.  Every toy store, television network, bookstore, and game manufacturer is aware of the huge marketing audience they have with the children of today.  Each tries to provide more realistic forms of killing and weapons that encourage the development of basic skills in the handling of these arms. 

Some of us have seen the hardships between the races and have tried to amend the actions of others.  Now we face not only a racial issue but the entertainment that is being developed in slaughtering huge numbers of characters who appear more and more real in their representation.

It is with no consideration that the characters are murdered and often the player feels they are fighting for their own survival.  What of these children as they grow and they find life is a hard battle of endurance.  We have seen the senseless killings in schools, and the murder of convenience store employees for a handful of change and some cigarettes.  Where is the conscience of the adults not only creating these items but also buying them for their impressionable children?  Some are the creators and parents trying to bring home an income to raise their children but at what expense? 

There is a great deal of discussion about the good and evil of the internet.  How children are being exploited and how this should be halted, but how many of these parents would remove the action games from their homes where players are beheaded and shot down over and over for hours at a time by their children? Often the addiction goes on to the adults in the family and they are just as highly involved in these games as the youngsters.

We need to improve our way of life, our planet and the environment but still our main response to leisure is battling, warring, and competition.  It is going to take co-operation not rivalry to change the attitudes of people.  It is just as important for the youth to learn that these games are as dangerous as the child porn and sites linked to hate organizations.

We love these precious little Cowboys and Indians and the last thing we want to see is them shot and killed for real.  The pattern for destruction has gotten way out of hand.  It is hard to target one area, there are so many that have been developed and are still being created every day with the focus on killing and destruction of mankind.  If life if of so little value we have taught our children well.  Can we sit back and shake our heads and point at individual children and parents and judge them for having the responsibility for murders and killings or are we all to blame?  Will we forget profits, ignore the ranting and ravings of children and not so little people when their toys of war are removed and stand up for something that enhances the lives of everyone on the planet?  Do we care enough to make a change?  Do we have the courage to stand up and face the heat of the arguments that will result?  Or will we just complain and wail about the way things are and let it continue until every door is locked and people hide in fear behind them only to have them broken down and be murdered for the few pieces of jewelry or valuables that might be had?  

If you read this far you have a choice to make, ignore every word and carry on with your life, or take action and stop supporting and encouraging the practice of killing and slaughter as an entertainment and amusement for our children.


                            Cheryl C. Helynck


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