Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country
of West Texas
Tuesday, November 6, 2001
By Smokey Briggs
I was American, when
American wasn't cool
I think I'm ready to start my new career as a country and western songwriter.
I have got the hook-line ready — "I was American, when American wasn't
cool," — set to the tune of Tanya Tucker's hit, "I was country, when
country wasn't cool." (I think it was Tucker, anyway).
Tucker's song, produced around the time of the Urban Cowboy craze, made
the point that country attitudes, music, attire, etc. had not always been
the stuff of popular culture.
My new song makes a similar point regarding popular culture these days.
Since September 11 the American Flag has been fairly popular. So is our
So are many attitudes and beliefs that had been written off as outmoded,
obsolete, old-fashioned, or just plain ignorant.
For the moment, enlisting in the armed forces is not a sign of unenlightened
patriotism, or the last chance for those unable to find a real job.
For now, flying the flag does not mean you are over 65 or a rabid nationalist
intent on electing statesmen who will oversee the bayoneting of starving
babies in the Third-World.
For now, praying to a Christian God in public is not a sign that you are
a simpleton too thickheaded to comprehend the wonders of scientific explanation.
For now, it's okay to be proud to be an American.
For now, it's okay to proclaim our free society to be better than all
the rest that exist today or that have existed before.
For now, it is politically acceptable to extol the virtues of the founding
fathers, despite the fact that they were Caucasian males with the silly belief
that civilians armed with Christian values and rifles might actually deter
both invasion and tyranny.
For now it is not political suicide to suggest that a man or woman should
protect themselves against muggers, rapists, or even terrorists.
For now, it is almost okay to point out that if Americans had not been
stripped of their right of self-defense at the boarding gate, the September
11 hijackings would never have been attempted, and 5,000 Americans would
still be alive.
For now, it is all right to demand manhood of men and womanhood of women,
and proclaim the virtues of each.
Many folks have been singing this tune for years in the face of a popular,
media-driven culture that detests all things that do not kow-tow to the liberal-left's
gender neutral, country neutral, value-neutral, I'm-okay-as-long-as-you-are-a-wimp,
Those folks were American, when American wasn't cool.
I like that line. I hope it catches on. I hope it signals a new bravery
amongst mainstream America to stick by what it knows to be right in its gut
and a willingness to spit in the face of the sophomoric teachings of the
I'll let ya'll know when Nashville calls.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Smokey Briggs is the editor and publisher of the
Pecos Enterprise whose column appears on Tuesdays. He can be e-mailed at:
Teacher thanks people for reading to students
Austin Elementary would like to thank all the people from around the
community who took time out of their busy schedules to read to our
students during our reading carnival. You have helped to motivate our
boys and girls to become lifetime readers by setting an example.
It was a success because of you.
Keeping the city zoo clean is a tough job
This is in response to the letter written to you in reference to the
I am happy to say that I was born, raised and I still live here in Pecos,
for twice as many years as that young lady has. I would like for her to know
that the zoo has never looked cleaner than it does today. Yes, keeping up
with the zoo is not an easy job, especially when you have one person to do
all the duties of so many animals we now have, but the job does get done
to a 100% plus. I should know, because my husband is the one that does those
Yes, the water is changed every day and the animals are fed an individual
food diet every day. It is just a shame that some people think otherwise.
This is done first thing in the morning, I am sorry to say that this is not
a circus and that these animals haven't been taught to keep up with their
cages and to make sure they don't leave the water messy when they take a
sip from it, so it can be of such a spectacular sight as to when everyone
decides to visit the zoo at any time of day.
As far as the animals appearing sad, my husband wasn't sent to an entertainment
school when he started working for the city, he was only told that he'd have
to feed, water, and keep the cages clean, like they currently are.
P.S. The zoo is inspected annually by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture
and needless to say has passed with flying colors on every inspection.
Citizen grateful for stranger's good deed
From time to time, strangers ask we who live in Pecos, Why? Here's
I was visiting my husband's grave at Mt. Evergreen and wondering how I
was going to get his headstone straightened. It was somehow laid crooked.
A young man that is employed by Reeves County and drives a water truck
asked me if I had a problem. When I told him he answered, "I will come on
Sunday, my day off, and straighten it for you." I told him, "I would be forever
He not only straightened my husband's tumbstone, but I noticed several
others that had also been straightened. What a good deed. I don't even know
This is why it's the people in Pecos that make a difference. Thank you,
young man from the bottom of my forever grateful heart.
MRS. LOY "BETH" CALLIER
God loves everyone
Del Sylver Bates found it hard to believe that God could love her until
she read in His word that he loves everyone in spite of their sin.
"For all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God," she read in
Romans 3:23. Then she found in John 3:16 that "God so loved the world, that
He gave His only begotten son" to save everyone who believes.
"Tantalized by this unbelievable news, my life began to grow in leaps
and bounds," she said. Wanting to share her new-found joy with others, she
began writing poems that express her relationship with God. The result is
a slim, hard-back volume of poetry titled "Journey with the Lord." Look
for it in your bookstore or at http://www.amazon.com.
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York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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Copyright 2001 by Pecos Enterprise