Riding Back Into Indian Country: A New Year’s Declaration

It’s almost 2023 A.D.

A new year. A new beginning. And a new way forward. 

This year for me has been shaped by the reality of devastation: the death of my beloved Mom on January 22, 2022. 

I won the jackpot: Mom was my best friend and mentor. We couldn’t have been closer: we could sense what each other was thinking, and we could communicate without words. 

Unlike many moms, who smother their sons and hold them back from the world, my Mom was always supportive and inspiring me in my dreams of manhood, adventure, and glory. 

Many moms don’t want their boys to become men. They want them to be cogs in the machine, good little boys for life who don’t ask questions and who don’t buck the system. 

My Mom couldn’t have been any different. She wanted me to be a Man. She wanted me to be just heroes I looked up to. She wanted me to make my mark upon the world. 

“With your shield or on it,” was her battle cry. 

I won the jackpot: without my Mom’s loving support, guidance, and care over 26 years, there would be no Pulp Fiction Renaissance today. 

AMBUSH AT KAMAZI PASS

In his academic study of the Wild West and WWII Warrior Mythology, The End of Victory Culture, Postmodern scholar Tom Englehardt writes that the great tales of the Wild West and WWII follow a two-step pattern. 

The first step is what he calls: “Ambush at Kamazi Pass”. That’s where the Predatory foe, whether Indians or Japs, stab the Americans in the back in a savage, premeditated, and unprovoked sneak attack. 

When my Mom died from a long, laborious, grueling battle with Colon Cancer, boy, did I know the true meaning of “Ambush at Kamazi Pass”!

But then there is the second step: “The Spectacle of Slaughter”. Here, the Confrontational Americans, rise up, lick their wounds, and go on the attack…hunting the savage foe down ruthlessly in their spider holes and jungle lairs and destroying the evil in a final showdown once and for all! 

WHAT MY MOM AND TOBY KEITH KNEW 

My Mom loved this legend that Tom Englehardt so masterfully illustrates. I’ll never forget her making me watch George W. Bush’s Axis of Evil Speech at his 2002 State of the Union. 

“You’re either with us, or you’re with the terrorists. You’re either with us, or you’re against us,” Dubya said. 

“That’s what Jesus says,” Mom explained. “You’re either with him, or you’re against him. You’re either hot or cold or He’ll spit you out of his mouth. You can’t sit on the fence. You gotta pick a side.” 

And so every year on 9/11, we would crank Toby Keith’s Angry American up to the ceiling and sing along: 

“Now this Nation that I love 

“Has fallen under attack!

“A mighty sucker punch came flyin’ in

“From somewhere in the back!

“But soon as we could see clearly

“Through our big black eye,

“Man, we lit up your world

“Like the Fourth of July!” 

Man. Have I got a big black eye. I’ve been holding a steak up to it all year. 

But this year? 

It’s time to light up the world like the Fourth of July! 

QUESTION TWINS  

That leaves us with two big questions: 

Where are we going? 

And how are we gonna get there? 

To answer these questions, we’ve got to look at the reality of the world. 

Let’s face it: the world is changing at a faster pace than it ever has been. And not for the better. 

It was “Mad Dog” Mattis who said: “The enemy gets a vote”, and boy, are they voting!

In this ever-changing human terrain, old friends have become foes, and old foes have become friends. 

As I look around the State of the West, and I see so many threats. Put the big ones on hold for now: the Chicomms, the Taliban, the Drug Cartels. 

They’re bad, but we can’t beat them unless we get to a deeper root of the problem. 

What I’m talking about are threats to the hearts and the minds of the people. Because the reality is, if you control the hearts and the minds, you control everything. 

THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF THE PEOPLE 

I went to an extremely far-Left university for two years, and then graduated from yet another far-Left university that was called “Conservative” because they draped some Bible verses on their Postmodernism. 

Check the box, and everything is ok! 

Back then, what we today call “Woke” was pretty fringe. That was 2014-2016. 

By 2020, it had come out in the open, and now you don’t have to be a scholar of Literary Criticism to know the danger that it is. 

And yet I see another danger on the horizon that is just as bad. 

The reactionary culture that has grown up around the Postmodern Woke threat is just as dangerous as the Postmodern Woke threat itself. 

TRIAD OF TERROR 

What is today passing for “Masculinity Culture” in the mainstream is Third World Predation repackaged for pasty-faced Bourgeois Suburbanite males with a veneer of bizarre homosexually-charged “Fight Club Brotherhood” that crushes any and all independent thought and action. 

And then there are the Church Authorities who are demanding we conveniently forget their past excesses that contributed to creating this Postmodern Woke mess and get on board with their unchanging tyrannical program. 

Finally, we have the Military Authorities that are demanding we forget that we fought a war for 20 years, forget that we got defeated by sheepherders in Reeboks, and just ignore the fact 22 Veterans are committing suicide a day because they’re struggling to  answer the question: “Were we the good guys? Was it all worth it?” 

No, never mind all that, just focus on this Cold War Fantasy fight we’ve got going on in Ukraine. 

This is the reality of the world today. 

This is how the enemy is voting. 

And it is this reality that shapes our plans and visions of the future. 

FORT APACHE AND THE ONE BIG THING

Pulp Fiction Renaissance is Fort Apache in the heart of Indian Country. It’s where the Cavalry and the Cowboys can go to rest, re-saddle, and re-train before saddling back up and doing it again out there beyond the palisade walls. 

To facilitate this goal, there is one big thing we have to do. 

We have to understand that Pulp Fiction, whether in book, film, comic, or even radio form, is not just mindless entertainment. 

In fact, good or bad, there is no such thing as mindless entertainment. 

I don’t care if you watch Keeping Up With the Kardashians all day like my hair dresser. I don’t care if you play Fortnite and watch Youtube all day like my seven year old brother. I don’t care if it’s Netflix documentaries or TLC reality shows or ESPN play-by-plays that float your boat. 

Everything we read, watch, and consume, everything is part of a system. It doesn’t mean it’s good, it doesn’t mean it’s bad, it’s just the way it is. Because like anything, there are good systems and bad systems out there. 

WHO WE WERE MADE TO BE

When you read something awesome like John Carter or Conan the Barbarian, when you get your hands on a rockin’ Pulp Fiction piece of cover art, when you feel your blood rise up in your veins and suddenly you’re walking ten feet tall…

You know you’ve found something good!

And it is good because it operates within the symbiosis of a good system that makes all that awesomeness possible. 

This last year…my whole life, really…has been a journey of discovery to find out: what is the system that makes all these things I love possible? What is the system, and what are the constituent parts that make up that system?

Because when we continually answer these questions, we become better equipped to put our dreams of manhood, adventure, and glory into action. 

We become more effective at living out our values honorably in the real world. 

We become who we were made to be. 

SADDLE UP!

My Mom lived by this system. “With your shield or on it” was her battle cry. 

She was one of those blessed people that seemed to be born knowing and understanding this system intuitively. And she blessed everyone who crossed her path with that knowledge and understanding. 

She raised great women and men. 

So this year, I’m living and learning and reporting this system, too. 

I’m doing it for her, I’m doing it for me, I’m doing it for all who’ve come before and all who come after me. 

So let’s Saddle Up. Get what you need from Fort Apache. 

Because we’re riding back into Indian Country!

Sincerely,

Richard Barrett

12-26-2022

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