The Lonely Sheepdog


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1911Tuner
August 20, 2008, 06:38 PM
That is part of the cursedness of the shotgun messenger...the loneliness of it. He is like a sheepdog. Feared by the flock and hated by the wolves. On the stagecoach, he is the necessary evil. Passengers and driver alike regard him with aversion, without him and his pestilential (strong) box, their lives would be 90 percent safer...and they know it.

The bad men...the rustlers...the stage robbers...hate him. They hate him because he is the guardian of property, because he stands between them and their desires...because they will have to kill him before they can get their hands on the coveted box. Most of all, they hate him because of his shotgun. The homely weapon that makes him the peer of many armed men in the turmoil of powder and lead.

--Wyatt Earp--



Courtesy of Fern Canyon Press

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Cougfan2
August 20, 2008, 06:42 PM
Tuner, nice quote. Did you get that out of a particular book?

1911Tuner
August 20, 2008, 07:51 PM
Did you get that out of a particular book?

An exerpt from From "Wyatt Earp Speaks" on the killing of Bud Philpott.

BruceRDucer
August 20, 2008, 08:00 PM
Wyatt:p Earp is an excellent source to quote.

FCFC
August 20, 2008, 08:04 PM
Passengers and driver alike regard him with aversion, without him and his pestilential (strong) box, their lives would be 90 percent safer...and they know it.

This is an interesting line. Can't quite get this part...but it seems like the box is a key part of the dilemma/problem.

It ain't just the sheepdog and his shotgun...

Seancass
August 20, 2008, 09:59 PM
that is a good/wise quote. i like.

1911Tuner
August 20, 2008, 10:08 PM
It ain't just the sheepdog and his shotgun...

You seem to have missed the point.

That being that the sheep fear and loathe the sheepdog because he looks too much like the wolf. He has the same weapons and the same capacity for violence on short notice...even though he is prepared to do violence on their behalf.

Treo
August 21, 2008, 12:39 AM
That being that the sheep fear and loathe the sheepdog because he looks too much like the wolf

Good thing I ain't a sheep dog.

Duke Junior
August 21, 2008, 12:48 AM
"The time approaches
That will with due decision make us know
What we shall say we have and what we owe.
Thoughts speculative their unsure hopes relate,
But certain issue strokes must arbitrate:
Towards which advance the war."
MacBeth Act IV, Scene 5
---William Shakespeare

Bringing in the Bard is always a little unsporting.
He is incomparable.
Wyatt did just fine.:)

Powderman
August 21, 2008, 02:34 AM
Good thing I ain't a sheep dog.

I am. And I love it!

Nolo
August 21, 2008, 03:02 AM
I'm afraid I am a sheepdog.
I mean afraid in its most literal sense.
But I feel it in the deepest reaches of myself.
There's a feeling of deep love and caring, which wishes to manifest itself in violence on those who would harm the people who command the love that you feel...
It is scary, and many tell you that you should not feel it.
That you will are just a wolf cub, to continue the metaphor.
It's a horrific and wonderful feeling all in the same instance.
Horrific for the actions that you would have to take to fulfill your feeling.
Wonderful at the certain and undeniable place in society that it gives you.
Very strange.
We are a breed apart. Watchmen. Guardians.
Now I'm getting all poetic...
:D

dogmush
August 21, 2008, 04:11 AM
*woof*

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 06:45 AM
We are a breed apart. Watchmen. Guardians

Precisely.

To expound...

The sheep fear/hate the sheepdog not only because he is both equipped and willing to do sudden, unbridled violence in their stead...while they are not...they're apprehensive of him because they can't control him. He's most often an independent operator, and not a part of the flock...even as he maintains watch over the flock.

The abilities that he possesses makes them uncomfortable because it places him on a higher rung...and sheep like equality. They're much more comfortable without a sheepdog...but as long as he stays out of sight, they can live with his presence...until the wolf shows up.

Then, the bleating begins. The sheepdog comes and kills the wolf, and the sheep bear witness to the carnage...and they're graphically reminded of the sheepdog's abilities.

And a new bleat rises:

"Did you have to bite the wolf? Why did you bite him so hard? Couldn't you have just barked and growled to frighten him into running away?"

So, the sheepdog returns to his distant post...comfortably out of sight of the sheep...and the sheep go back to their grazing...complacent in their grassy world, aware that the dog is still out there...somewhere. They're mildly uncomfortable and annoyed at his presence...but they can live with it so long as they don't have to actually see him or know exactly where he is.

chieftain
August 21, 2008, 07:05 AM
I agree about the Wolf, Sheepdog and Sheep analogy.

But here is my favorite Poem.

Kipling, don't you know:

TOMMY

I went into a public-'ouse to get a pint o' beer,
The publican 'e up an' sez, "We serve no red-coats here."
The girls be'ind the bar they laughed an' giggled fit to die,
I outs into the street again an' to myself sez I:
O it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, go away";
But it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play,
The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
O it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play.

I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
They gave a drunk civilian room, but 'adn't none for me;
They sent me to the gallery or round the music-'alls,
But when it comes to fightin', Lord! they'll shove me in the stalls!
For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, wait outside";
But it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide,
The troopship's on the tide, my boys, the troopship's on the tide,
O it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide.

Yes, makin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;
An' hustlin' drunken soldiers when they're goin' large a bit
Is five times better business than paradin' in full kit.
Then it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, 'ow's yer soul?"
But it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll,
The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
O it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll.

We aren't no thin red 'eroes, nor we aren't no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An' if sometimes our conduck isn't all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don't grow into plaster saints;
While it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, fall be'ind",
But it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind,
There's trouble in the wind, my boys, there's trouble in the wind,
O it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind.

You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace.
For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!

-- Rudyard Kipling

Old but still my favorite.

Go figure.

Fred

762 shooter
August 21, 2008, 07:57 AM
Some of the more arrogant sheep think that they are owed a peaceful existence and it's not their job to procure it.

Life doesn't give a damn who lives it.

Double Naught Spy
August 21, 2008, 09:03 AM
That being that the sheep fear and loathe the sheepdog because he looks too much like the wolf. He has the same weapons and the same capacity for violence on short notice...even though he is prepared to do violence on their behalf.

They also fear the sheepdog because the sheepdog is essentially their jailer, a jailer that forces them to behave in manners they do not wish. Sheep that get out of line are barked at, frightened, prodded, and nipped into compliance. It is the sheepdog that is there to drive them to their destruction when the rancher decides it is time to butcher part of the flock. They are protected from the wolves only to be eaten by the rancher, the sheepdog's boss.

Phil DeGraves
August 21, 2008, 09:30 AM
Unfortunately, there are a lot of sheep in sheepdog clothing out there...

dutch pirate
August 21, 2008, 10:53 AM
http://www.killology.com/sheep_dog.htm

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 11:24 AM
But, I do not consider myself a sheepdog. Sheepdogs are there to put their lives on the line defending a herd of sheep. I don't do that. Police officers and the Military are the sheepdogs.

I am just a sheep with a handgun. I don't need a sheepdog

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 11:58 AM
But, I do not consider myself a sheepdog. Sheepdogs are there to put their lives on the line defending a herd of sheep. I don't do that. Police officers and the Military are the sheepdogs.

Would you rise to the occasion should your wife/children/parents, etc. come under deadly threat? Would you lay down your life to protect your family?

Yes?

Then you are a sheepdog.

But:

I am just a sheep with a handgun. I don't need a sheepdog

If you would not take action to protect those precious to you, even at grave risk to yourself...then you may be excused. They're waiting for you down in the pasture.

*woof*

Biker
August 21, 2008, 12:27 PM
Woof!

I can chew anything I bite.

Biker

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 01:07 PM
A sheepdog is there to protect the whole herd from wolves. His JOB is to keep them safe.

My only job is to keep myself and my loved ones safe. I have no duty to keep other sheep in the herd safe. Therefore, I, and others in this conversation are not sheepdogs.

I always thought the Sheepdog tag was a self aggrandizing way for us to chat about CCW holders.

If you want to consider yourself a sheepdog for your own small herd/family, then I do think that is appropriate, but for the "Herd" en masse, then no. If the wolf goes after another sheep, not in my control, then that sheep should be protecting itself or have it's own sheepdog.

357WheelGun
August 21, 2008, 01:13 PM
You seem to have missed the point.

That being that the sheep fear and loathe the sheepdog because he looks too much like the wolf. He has the same weapons and the same capacity for violence on short notice...even though he is prepared to do violence on their behalf.

No, Earp is saying that they fear the shotgun man because his presence means there's a strongbox on board that is full of valuables that are going to be a target for thieves. It's not about the shotgunner looking like the "wolf"; rather it's about the fact that the shotgunner is always accompanied by something known to attract the wolf.

It's like going swimming in the ocean with someone who has a speargun and a bucket of chum. You're not worrying about the speargun, you're worried about the sharks that will be attracted by the bucket of chum.

fiVe
August 21, 2008, 01:18 PM
There are few, if any, words that can describe the worth of the killology sheep dog commentary. I know my thinking was totally changed by the Wichita massacre and then 9-11.

I wonder how many who stepped away from sheepdom after 9-11 have regressed back. It's been almost 7 years and sheeple tend to forget/get comfortable too readily. My situational awareness is so much different (i.e. more acute) than it once was. As is often said, it is not so much the probabilities as it is the stakes, and thus, I aspire to be as good a sheepdog as I can.

To all sheepdogs: Peace and safety. If not us, then who?


Must respectfully,
fiVe

Shadowangel
August 21, 2008, 01:41 PM
If you want to consider yourself a sheepdog for your own small herd/family, then I do think that is appropriate, but for the "Herd" en masse, then no. If the wolf goes after another sheep, not in my control, then that sheep should be protecting itself or have it's own sheepdog.

A sheepdog isn't going to be able to tell the difference between "his" sheep or someone else's flock. ;) If a wolf shows up, the sheepdog will protect any of the sheep he can, not just the ones he considers "his."

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 01:45 PM
A sheepdog is there to protect the whole herd from wolves. His JOB is to keep them safe.

Agreed.

My only job is to keep myself and my loved ones safe.

And they are your "flock." You're a sheepdog with a small herd, as most of us are...but a sheepdog, nontheless. Your duty to your family...your "job" if you prefer...is to see to their welfare and keep them safe, even at the cost of your own life.

So, you would do sudden violence on behalf of your family. Excellent! Welcome to the brotherhood.

Policemen aren't sheepdogs by definition, though some are by nature. Their duty is to enforce the law and maintain public order...but they have no duty to protect anyone. Most will, of course...given the opportunity...but they only rarely have that.

Nor is the soldier, in the strictest sense. He will run headlong into battle with orders from on high in order to protect the country and the people who live in it...but he normally has to wait for orders, willing though he may be.

The sheepdog is independent. He will wait for no orders, nor will he be restrained when his hackles are up. Some limit the response to their immediate pack, while others will extend their services...which occasionally lands them in trouble...but those will not stand idly by while a wolf attacks and devours a weak or helpless sheep. This, regardless of who feeds him.

Kentucky-roughrider
August 21, 2008, 01:45 PM
The Killology commentary was thoughtful. The sheepdog does everything to keep the sheep safe, the sheep may not like it. I sure hate speeding tickets or getting pulled over for any reasons. but the is generally there is a good reason.
There is nothing worse than a sheepdog done bad, a man abusing women is an example. Or, a wolf in sheepdog's clothing is a real scary thought, ie a bad cop

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 01:50 PM
rather it's about the fact that the shotgunner is always accompanied by something known to attract the wolf

And what of the coaches that didn't carry strongboxes, and only transported passengers? They too attacted highwaymen...and they had a guard riding shotgun, just like the others.

The people who blamed the strongbox for their peril are typical in the "There is no real danger" because they don't want to believe that there is any...so they look for things to blame for their discomfort rather than admit to themselves that the man with the shotgun really is a good idea.

enfield303
August 21, 2008, 01:52 PM
Woof!

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 02:21 PM
Therefore, I, and others in this conversation are not sheepdogs.


Speak for yourself. For some, there isn't a choice in the matter. Or, in the words of our favorite swabbie:

"I yam what I yam."

If the wolf goes after another sheep, not in my control, then that sheep should be protecting itself or have it's own sheepdog.


So...you're saying that if you witnessed a young girl being abducted in a parking lot by a pair of unsavory characters, you'd just stand there...pistol on your belt...and write down the license number and be a good witness... (?)

Interesting.


Police officers and the Military are the sheepdogs.


And that is another point that I have to disagree with...at least in part. Some become sheepdogs by choice. Others are sheepdogs by nature, and they will be sheepdogs with or without a uniform or job description. These are the people who see a group of thugs harassing an old man, and intervene...without a moment's hesitation. These are the true sheepdogs. They're born to it.

A good many of them do wind up in the military or with police agencies, thank God...but being a sheepdog isn't a prerequisite for either job.

Shadowangel
August 21, 2008, 02:22 PM
Woof.

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 05:27 PM
So...you're saying that if you witnessed a young girl being abducted in a parking lot by a pair of unsavory characters, you'd just stand there...pistol on your belt...and write down the license number and be a good witness... (?)

Ok, I can prop up a strawman too.... The young girl was just caught in a police sting by the two undercover police officers. She was just seen dealing black tar heroin to school age kids next door. She is also from a well known cannibal clan of hillbillies.

Now, unbeknown to me, the rest of the police are coming around the corner with the van to take her away and go after the rest of the nefarious clan. But, I, whip out my pistol and my new Batman Decoder ring and I draw down on the two police officers.

Well now, from behind me, the officers friends just witnessed me drawing on their comrades.... I wonder what they will do? Ventilate me like swiss cheese would be my guess....

In any situation... you don't know what you don't know.

In your situation, I probably would get involved. I can come up with dozens of situations where I would and dozens that I would not. Does not make me a sheepdog that protects the entire herd. It makes me someone who will fight if needed, be a good witness when needed and hope I am right 100% of the time. It does not make me Batman, a Sheepdog or even the Green Hornet.

If you want to go with the label Sheepdog, great, but you might as well call yourself Batman then. Same thing.... The protector of the herd... or Gotham City.

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 05:59 PM
Ok, I can prop up a strawman too

It wasn't a strawman at all...so I'll rephrase it into a straightforward question.

Would you intervene if you witnessed such an event...or would you stand there...remain uninvolved...and be thankful that it's somebody else's daughter?

If you would offer help...you're a sheepdog.

I'm not bustin' your...ummm...chops. Just tryin' to figure out which category you fit into.

If you want to go with the label Sheepdog, great, but you might as well call yourself Batman then. Same thing.... The protector of the herd... or Gotham City.

Oh, please. Let's not let this spiral downward into a cutesy attempt at ridicule and veiled insults in order to support our postion.

So...The question stands. Would you save the fair damsel, or would you let the cretins have her?

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 06:12 PM
Your Strawman was to set up a scenario that was easy to knock down on your argument as it was easier to do that than to refute the actual argument. I responded with my own Strawman waiting for you to knock it down. I have now equated thinking that you are indeed a Sheepdog to the very similar notion that you also consider yourself Batman as the two roles are very similar.

As I said before, I can devise millions of scenarios where I would likely be a "sheepdog" and I can also devise millions of scenarios where being a "sheepdog" or Batman would not only be the wrong thing to do, but could conceivably get you killed for being wrong.

So, since my definition of a sheepdog is one who protects the herd just as Batman protects Gotham City, the point is valid. Batman=sheepdog.

Just as I am not Batman, I am also not a Sheepdog....

Whether I am a sheepdog for my family, friends etc, is a different scenario, but in no way am I society's sheepdog


And in the reversal... Would you shoot the undercover cops and let the cannibal heroin dealer get away while the officer's friends ventilate you or would you let them do their business?

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 06:23 PM
And in the reversal... Would you shoot the undercover cops and let the cannibal heroin dealer get away while the officer's friends ventilate you or would you let them do their business?

Nobody said that you have to shoot anybody! (Talk about a strawman.)
You don't have to shoot in order to intervene. You only have to shoot if your intervention causes you to come under an attack...which you could...but that's not part of the question. Never was. You made an assumption that we should respond with guns a-blazin'.

C'mon, man! Just answer the question. Would you help the girl or not?

It's real simple. :)

357WheelGun
August 21, 2008, 06:24 PM
And what of the coaches that didn't carry strongboxes, and only transported passengers? They too attacted highwaymen...and they had a guard riding shotgun, just like the others.

The people who blamed the strongbox for their peril are typical in the "There is no real danger" because they don't want to believe that there is any...so they look for things to blame for their discomfort rather than admit to themselves that the man with the shotgun really is a good idea.

Oh, I agree with you. But that's not what Earp was talking about. If it was, he would not have said, "without him and his pestilential (strong) box, their lives would be 90 percent safer...and they know it."

Let me ask you this:

You are given the choice of stagecoaches to ride through dangerous territory. Both have guards. One has a box that is known to be full of valuables, the other does not.

Are you telling me that you'd choose the one that is known to be carrying valuables and honestly consider it equally safe?

Earp isn't talking about fear of the sheepdog simply because he's a sheepdog. Not given that he's added the bit about the strongbox. No, Earp is talking about fearing that which necessitates the sheepdog's presence. The shotgunner has that fear cascade onto him, but it's not because of anything inherent in the shotgunner.

I grew up in an area where tornados were relatively common. When the sky turns purple in the middle of a thunderstorm, I'm going down to the basement. That's got nothing to do with a fear of the color purple, but rather the knowledge that it means increased immediate risk of a tornado.

I understand the similarities, but it's not quite the same. When you're in a neighborhood with bars on the windows, are you more on your guard? I would think so. Does that mean you're afraid of the bars? Of course not. But you're concerned about the increased threat level that they represent. Similarly, the presence of a shotgunner on a stagecoach meant you were in for a riskier drive than normal. It's not that people were afraid of the shotgunner, rather, they were concerned about the increased risk that necessitated him.

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 06:25 PM
ok, Ill bite..

Would you draw down on the two officers?

Or, we could come up with thousands of scenarios and debate each one. Or we could debate the topic of whether we really are Sheepdogs or just think we are.

Gordon Fink
August 21, 2008, 06:48 PM
Exactly. All this thread tells me is that chest thumping from the anonymous safety of the Internet is alive and well on the High Road. :D

~G. Fink

Joe Demko
August 21, 2008, 07:07 PM
357 Wheelgun is exactly right. Earp is saying the passengers fear the "sheepdog" because of his bandit-attracting strongbox. He gives no other reason and any other interpretation of this
On the stagecoach, he is the necessary evil. Passengers and driver alike regard him with aversion, without him and his pestilential (strong) box, their lives would be 90 percent safer...and they know it. is unsupportable.
In fact, nothing in Earp's quote indicates that the "sheepdog" is there to protect passengers or drivers at all. Earp's statement supports nothing but that the "sheepdog" is there to protect the strongbox.
In the second paragraph, we learn why the badmen hate him: he's guarding something they want_the strongbox_ and he has a very effective weapon.
Nice colorful quote from a colorful man, but it has jack to do with CCW.
I agree, BTW, that the whole "sheepdog" analogy has long been nothing but a way for ccw holders to stroke our own egos.

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 07:08 PM
Correct Joe Demko

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 09:10 PM
Wheelgun...I understand what Earp meant. I had rather hoped to point out that the sheep fear the sheepdog because he represents something that they can never be.

Anyway...back to the point/counterpoint with Dravur. It's time to come clean, I guess. Sorry, Drav. I truly didn't mean to put ya on the spot...but there's method to my madness.

Read on:

You won't answer the question because you can't. Now, pay attention. I'm goin' somewhere with this, and it's not where you think. You sorta took the thread on a drift, and since you brought it up...we may as well address it. It's worthwhile.

You can't say that you would intervene, because you'd have to back up on your hard stance...and you think I'll use it to prove that you're a sheepdog...but I won't do that becasue you're not. You had it right earlier. You're a sheep with a gun. No sin in that.

Or, if you say that you wouldn't intervene, that I'll offer it as proof that you're a coward...but I won't do that either. I don't know you. I can't make that call.

You're actually pretty normal. Most people wouldn't intervene. They may say that they would, and they may even believe it...but until they're faced with it...they simply don't know what they'd do. That's the real and honest answer, by the way. Unless and until one actually faces it...the correct response is: "I don't know what I'd do."

You may think that you wouldn't...and then turn into a raging tiger when the flag flies. You may state flatly that you would...and fold up like an accordian at the moment of truth.

Most people wouldn't get involved because they're afraid. Afraid of being hurt. Afraid of the legal repercussions should they be forced to shoot should their action result in them being attacked. Afraid of losing all that they own. Hell...afraid of what the neighbors would think. Pick one.

Note that afraid doesn't equate to spineless coward. A little fear is a good thing. Keeps us healthy and sane.

The wolf and the sheepdog are at opposite ends of the spectrum, and they actually make up a very small segment of our population. The largest percentage of the people are sheep. They follow the rules and they observe protocol. They go about their business and avoid trouble rather than run toward it. The born sheepdog will run toward it if and when he hears a piteous cry for help...every time. It's in him in the same way that it's in the wolf to seek easy prey. The two don't just look alike...they are alike. They're just in direct opposition to one another. Mirror images. Each one understanding the other. The sheep understands neither one.

The sheepdog recognizes the wolf and watches for him to make his move. The wolf recognizes the sheepdog and keeps his distance...most of the time. Once in a while, a stupid wolf will choose the wrong victim, or will fail to notice that a sheepdog is watching him as he sizes up a weak one...and he pays the price.

So...the attempt to determine what we would or wouldn't do is probably best made in advance. Have it all sorted out ahead of time. Once it starts...there won't be time for reflection and soul-searching.

By the way...I'm a sheepdog. That "strawman" scenario that I outlined was real. It happened about 25 years ago near Rural hall, NC. I intervened. It was a little unnerving, but everything went well and nobody got shot...though for a few seconds, I wasn't so sure. The wolves were smart enough to recognize that I had an ace up my sleeve...or at least they suspected it strongly. Lucky them. Lucky me. Lucky her.

Would I do it again?

I don't know. Maybe. Probably.

Joe Demko
August 21, 2008, 10:24 PM
That was your shining moment, then, and bully for you for handling it without bloodshed. I still don't buy what you're trying to sell in this thread. It all starts from a false dichotomy and deteriorates from there.

Treo
August 21, 2008, 11:06 PM
I personally despise the sheepdog anaolgy. I do not carry a gun for the protection of the people around me, my "herd" goes armed too. Now I realize that arguments could be made that my intervention on any level makes me a "sheep dog" but I refuse the title. There was an article(oped) today in the Spings Gazette about how C.U. needs CCW on campus ( it does) and how by allowing it the board of regents would get a campus full of plain clothes volunteer security guards. I cringed when I read it, the last thing we need is for CHP holders to think that the card imputes some type of police powers. If we make the analogy at violent crime how far do we take it? Would you "intervene" if someone W/out a handicaped sticker parked in a handicaped spot? Are we the new "Guardian Angles"? Who BTW have pretty much left Co Springs because they were universally despised. There is ( or was they may have disbanded) a group of citizens here in the Springs called the "C.B. Citizen's Patrol" they all wore black BDUs and OC'd and drove around south Co Springs all night on "the look out" for crime. They actually spent most of the evening patroling the South Gate IHOP. You say "sheep dog" that's where my mind goes.

BTW generally when a sheep dog meets a coyote ( or a wolf for that matter) the sheep dog doesn't fare too well

1911Tuner
August 21, 2008, 11:18 PM
the last thing we need is for CHP holders to think that the card imputes some type of police powers


I absolutely agree...but why does it always come down to guns? Why is it that it's assumed that intervention in an attack automatically means reaching for a gun? The sheepdog...or whatever description you wish to use...will render aid, whether armed or not. I've seen it.

It's not about guns and it's not about being a self-appointed protector of the weak. The question isn't about whether or not we are on the prowl for dastardly villians. The question is simply:

Will you stand by and watch while someone takes a beat-down through no fault of his own...or will you stand up and say: "HOLD ON! THAT IS ENOUGH!"

Police powers aren't required. Neither is a gun...though it may come in handy.

mgregg85
August 21, 2008, 11:22 PM
Its a neccesary dichotomy, sheep vs. sheepdog, Civilians vs. Police, etc.

"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"

A balance with checks and balances is good.

Dravur
August 21, 2008, 11:39 PM
You set up the strawman that in a very specific situation you should do X. You have a foregone conclusion, yet, when I bring it full circle and show that every scenario can be turned into a situation where you do not know the facts and that can get you and other people killed. Do you see the problem with the strawman?

The real point of the thread is whether CCW holders or others are "sheepdogs". This is a term alot of CCW holders think fits them and that is dangerous. You are not a sheepdog anymore than I am. You may think you are and walk around thumping your chest and imagining scenarios where your superhuman powers can be displayed, but that is not how the real world works. Truth be told, Sheepdogs only occur in comic books, and various works of fiction. There is something bad when a person can say with certainty how they would react to a situation given in a few sentences.

I turned your situation on it's ear and yet you persist in playing it.... It isn't a real life scenario. I have no idea how I would react based on a couple sentences. I have no idea what the actual event would be until it happens. So, the scenario thing is quite lame. But if you want to make up scenarios, I am quite up to the task and we can debate them till we are old and Grey. Maybe on Tuesday, I would intervene and just to be contrary, on Wednesday, I wouldn't. See? it's easy when it's not real life.

Let me ask you this.... How is thinking of yourself as a sheepdog any different than the Mall Ninja protecting his little slice of mallness? Same thing really... He thinks of himself as the sheepdog protecting all of the little mall rats and he can puff out his chest and brag about how he can take multiple hits to the back trauma plate as he loads his wheelbarrow...

So, explain to me how the sheepdog mentality is any different except for the smugness as you conceal your weapons while the Mall Ninja proudly displays his rack of throwing stars.

Powderman
August 22, 2008, 12:06 AM
I apologize in advance for venting, but this:

So, explain to me how the sheepdog mentality is any different except for the smugness as you conceal your weapons while the Mall Ninja proudly displays his rack of throwing stars.


got me just a bit steamed.

You know, fellas and ladies, here's what it boils down to.

In order to have a safe society we have to assume the responsibility for the safety of those around us. We have to be willing to stand up when needed and necessary.

If you won't stand up for others, than you should NEVER expect anyone to stand up for you. And, they probably won't. Karma is a b***h.

As for the comment above, let me tell you something, bucko. I have stood in the breach, and stood up for others at risk levels varying from non-existent to mortal danger.

Does that mean that I am fearless or invulnerable? Quite a few of the times I did stand up for others--both as a cop and not as a cop--I did so while almost shaking with fear, because I knew that I could get hurt or killed. But the alternative was to walk away from a person who needed help desperately--and I wasn't about to do it.

You won't help your fellow man in his or her hour of need? Then you're a rank coward, and I don't care how you pose or posture on line. No amount of stated prose or meaningless sophorisms will change the fact that, while you talk smack on line, you are a bright yellow COWARD, and I want no truck with you.

If you can walk on while someone else is being hurt then you are a waste of air. Some animals won't leave another ANIMAL alone, in mortal peril!

And please, don't color the air with meaningless qualifications. You ARE your brother's keeper. Here's a question--how would you feel if you (God forbid) received news that a loved one of yours had been attacked--and that there was a CPL/CCW there who did NOTHING?

I'm off the soapbox, but here it is again, reduced to its least common denominator--if you won't help another human being in their hour of greatest need, you aren't worth day-old spit.

Nolo
August 22, 2008, 12:33 AM
Okay, we've got a lot of words being passed around as to whether the sheepdog-sheep-wolf analogy is accurate.
It is.
Humans are remarkable creatures because they fill the role of many species.
Sheep are sheep.
Sheepdogs are sheepdogs.
Wolves are wolves.
There is NO changing that. People have tried, and they've been injured in some way, usually as a result of that.
People are different than other animals.
For example, there's the existence of a "calling".
People have specialties.
Some have the calling to become doctors.
Some have the calling to become workmen.
Etc, etc.
Some have the calling to be sheepdogs.
I can't imagine the whole world has that calling, as that would shift the dynamics of the world to a totally different bent.
And of course, psychopaths don't fit in as sheepdogs, and they clearly aren't the same as the average person.
Thus, the sheepdog-sheep-wolf analogy fits.
The only thing I'd say is that there are probably more roles.
Coyote is probably a good one.
Sort of the "sheep" of the psychopath world. A follower, an underling, but every bit as vicious.

Treo
August 22, 2008, 12:34 AM
I had a feeling this wasn't gonna end well.

Call me a rank yellow coward but if it's avoidable I'm not getting in it.

I don't have the facts, I don't have the immunity and unless happens right in front of me I probably won't have the time.

The very last thing we need is for CHP holders to get a reputation for, or the self image of, a bunch of vigilantes.

I have witnessed one crime ( that I wasn't participating in) in my life, and all I saw was a guy(the thief) run by me. If I intervene where do I draw the line? what if I see some one dealing drugs? Prostitution? What about a gang war? surely I should jump in on that right?

I'm not a sheepdog I'll be a coyote thanks.

Nolo
August 22, 2008, 12:38 AM
By the way, Treo, I wasn't referencing your "coyote".
My comments about the coyote weren't directed at you, in otherwords.
But, I'd choose another descriptor for yourself. People don't like coyotes much.
Mongoose, perhaps?
:D

Loomis
August 22, 2008, 12:53 AM
No, not a coyote or a mongoose or a sheepdog. He's a sheep. A sheep with really big horns that chooses to stay out of it and use his horns only for himself.

Nolo
August 22, 2008, 12:59 AM
IBTL.
This has gotten personal.
I'm not gonna flag anything, but the mods will come soon enough.

Chris Rhines
August 22, 2008, 01:05 AM
This silly "sheepdog" analogy needs to be excised from our culture. It is nothing but macho, self-indulgent chest-thumping. Frankly, it makes us all look bad.

I'm not a sheep, sheepdog, wolf, coyote, or any other furry critter. I'm a human being who plans to see to his own defense, and that of his family and friends.

- Chris

Biker
August 22, 2008, 01:08 AM
Lotta gray area here. If I see a couple of crank-freaks beating the hell out of each other, I'm gonna say "Rock on, Beavers" and keep strolling.

On the other hand, if I see a man beating a woman or an old Man or old Lady being mugged, maybe a dog being abused, I have to step in.

It's the Right Thing To Do.

Don't mean I have to shoot somebody. Just means I have to do what I can to stop an immoral act and help the weak as best I can.

I'm no Mall Ninja but I've been a reluctant hero a time or three and I've paid the price. I don't care for it but would do the same thing again given the same circumstances.

Sometimes you just can't turn your head.

Biker

Treo
August 22, 2008, 01:09 AM
Coyote is probably a good one.
Sort of the "sheep" of the psychopath world. A follower, an underling, but every bit as vicious

NOLO no offense taken, Now here's some things you don't know about coyotes.

Coyotes are flexible and adaptable, the are found in 49 of the 50 states, where wolves have been mostly eradicated

They blend in well , they have been found in downtown Chicago & Central Park New York. They are able to live in society and remain free.

A coyote will run every time if you give him a choice. Corner him and you'll wish you never had.

And as I said when a sheepdog tangles W/ a coyote it almost never goes well for the sheepdog
Nope I'll stay a coyote

Nolo
August 22, 2008, 01:11 AM
This silly "sheepdog" analogy needs to be excised from our culture. It is nothing but macho, self-indulgent chest-thumping. Frankly, it makes us all look bad.

I'm not a sheep, sheepdog, wolf, coyote, or any other furry critter. I'm a human being who plans to see to his own defense, and that of his family and friends.
It only becomes ignorant and detrimental when it is subjected to undue prejudice and arrogance.
When left to its own and examined from an objective perspective, it's actually a rather good model of an aspect of society, though I think it's a bit simpler than it truly needs to be.
For instance, it was corrupted when people started calling Treo a sheep.
They have no idea who Treo is! They have no idea how he would react or what he would do. Methinks even he doesn't know.
I know I don't, but I can make assertions that may prove correct or false later that are based on some things I know about myself.
Anyway, this thread doesn't have much of a life left, I think. I'm not sure whether it can be saved.
Coyotes are flexible and adaptable, the are found in 49 of the 50 states, where wolves have been mostly eradicated

They blend in well , they have been found in downtown Chicago & Central Park New York. They are able to live in society and remain free.

A coyote will run every time if you give him a choice. Corner him and you'll wish you never had.

And as I said when a sheepdog tangles W/ a coyote it almost never goes well for the sheepdog
Nope I'll stay a coyote
Eh, but maybe what you're looking for is more along the lines of "feral cat".
Kai-Oats don't make many people happy, though it is rather accurate (which I knew it was, when you take a certain aspect of the animal. It's one of the more complex animals, mostly because it backs down to other, larger predators, and because it is largely a scavenger.).
Keep calling yourself a coyote, and your liable to take some flak. ;)

Realbigo
August 22, 2008, 01:28 AM
I've always thought of myself as more a reformed wolf than as a sheepdog. I was not a very good person as a teenager. I never hurt anyone badly or caused any damage that took more than a couple hundred $'s to repair, but I still think like a scumbag. I don't act on it the way I used to, but that's a combination of impulse control, 4 hard nosed DI's and the fact, that Jail ain't fun. I will stand between the sheep and the wolves of our society if need be, but I don't have the sheepdog's inherent loyalty to those who refuse to acknowledge the world around them.

dogmush
August 22, 2008, 03:45 AM
The young girl was just caught in a police sting by the two undercover police officers. She was just seen dealing black tar heroin to school age kids next door. She is also from a well known cannibal clan of hillbillies.

Now, unbeknown to me, the rest of the police are coming around the corner with the van to take her away and go after the rest of the nefarious clan. But, I, whip out my pistol and my new Batman Decoder ring and I draw down on the two police officers.


The fact that you think this is a strawman, or come up with reasons why not to intervine shows that you're just not getting the sheepdog analogy.

Yes, I would intervene. Every time. I have in similar situations, and I will again. That doesn't mean you go in guns blazing, often a simple "Hey! *** are you doing?" works. In your scenario, the LEO pulls a badge and says "Don't worry sir, she's a canibal, and we're arresting her." In Tuner's scenario you point out that they are NOT leaving with the girl and it would be better for everyone if they let her go, and left. Either way there are folks out there that would intervene.

We have to, we're wired that way. The possibility of not at making sure is not open to us. Call it macho, or chest thumping if you want, it's just the way our brain works.

As a side note, the presence of a firearm does not affect this. I'd try and stop the guys weather I was in full battle-rattle with my M249, or in my bunny slippers. One might be more succesful then the other, but the attempt still gets made.

While Tuner has a valid point about knowing in advance what you'll do, if you've ever been in a situation you know what you are. If the choice to walk away even existed for you, not a sheepdog.

And that's cool, it's good even. Sheep are almost universally happier. They probably live longer. It's fine. Protect you and yours and go about your life. There's nothing wrong with that. Be at peace with your nature.

But some of us have a different nature, and litarally don't have that option.

So in the succinct words of my German Shepherd Dog, who can fit all that and a effective warning of the folly of trying to change ones nature into one syllable.

*woof*

Mandirigma
August 22, 2008, 06:26 AM
Woof!

I'm with Biker, sometimes you just can't turn your head.

For those of you that clutch their talismans to protect themselves (family and friends inclusive) "Party on Garth!" ya ain't the ones I gotta worry about anyway.

My sig speaks for me.

1911Tuner
August 22, 2008, 07:17 AM
On the other hand, if I see a man beating a woman or an old Man or old Lady being mugged, maybe a dog being abused, I have to step in.


And that's what this was about, Biker...not assuming the role of Batman and lurking around Gotham in the night. I already had you figured for a stand-up dawg, by the way. ;)

Sometimes you just can't turn your head.

But most will...and do. How many YouTube beat-down videos have we seen here and on other gun boards that show a half-dozen bystanders just...well...standing by? We see them behind the perpetrator(s) in sufficient numbers to take successful action with little or no risk...and yet they stand there and do nothing other than maybe whip out a cell phone and call the police.

As a side note, the presence of a firearm does not affect this.

And that's the second point. As I asked earlier...why does it always come down to the question of skinnin' the ol' smokewagon? Have we come to the point that all our problems are starting to look like nails? Most often an intervention only requires a shout and an aggressive stance to bring it all to a halt. The gun is only there to prevent retaliation for interrupting the night's activities.

So...Where are the sheepdogs amongst us?

bdickens
August 22, 2008, 09:12 AM
Too many people think that whipping out a cell phone and calling the police is "doing something.

Double Naught Spy
August 22, 2008, 09:22 AM
A sheepdog is there to protect the whole herd from wolves. His JOB is to keep them safe.

Do y'all even know what a real sheepdog does? Have any of you actually worked with a sheepdog or been with a shepherd, the flock, and a sheepdog(s) and watched them work? Okay, I will admit that my experience is limited to spending the afternoon with a shepherd in Constance Germany as he had his dogs working his flock across the campus of the university there. He had been hired by the university to shepherd his flock onto the grounds to keep the grass manicured. He explained to me how he controls the dogs, their pecking order, their personalities, etc. He was quite proud of his dogs in the control and protection of his flock and the dogs that he had were those that had survived training. Bad sheepdogs get put down early on.

You are fairly naive to believe that sheepdogs are there to magnanimously serve to protect sheep at all cost to their own lives. If you wish to equate yourself with actual sheepdogs (of which their are a variety of breeds), then understand that they are not this romantic version being spewed here any more than men in general are quintessential chivalrous good samaritans.

First and foremost, a sheepdog works at the beck and call of a master who commands the sheepdog regularly, both rewarding and punishing the dog as needed. Proclaiming you are a sheepdog is to proclaim that somebody else is telling you what to do everyday, day in and day out. The sheepdog lives to serve the master, not to protect the flock. Who is your master?

While a sheepdog serves to protect the sheep, that is just one aspect, the myth today of a Warner Brothers cartoon. Their job isn't so much about protection, but about control of the flock. They are there to dominate the flock in to behaving or moving in manners deemed by the master. The master is there to exploit the flock as s/he isn't magnanimous either. The sheepdog is there to make sure the master gets what he wants from the flock. So the sheepdogs see to it that the master can do whatever he wants to the sheep, be it shearing them or killing them.

How does the sheepdog tend to the master's needs with the flock? Is the sheepdog a nice guy who politely asks the flock to comply with the master's wishes. No. The sheepdog is the henchman that bullies the flock into compliance through intimidation and pain.

The sheepdog is also known for a nasty side, poaching the flock himself. If caught, the dog may be punished by the master or killed, especially if it is a repeated event. You see, sheepdogs as a group, are not entirely trustworthy. It is no wonder the sheep fear them, bullies by day, and potentially killers by night.

The story recounted in Killology about the role of the sheepdog is nothing but a fairy tale work of fiction. If you want to be a sheepdog, talk to your fairy godmother.

Dave McCracken
August 22, 2008, 09:22 AM
I find the wolf/sheepdog/sheep analogy a trifle misleading, though I confess to Sheepdoghood.

EVERYONE has the capacity to be any of the critters. Most of us are sheep most of the time.

We go along with the herd, we don't hurt anyone, etc.

Sheephood.

We tend to help others. Think of the tremendous abilities we possess to work together, to place ourselves in harm's way to hlep others. We confront violent people with the possibility of violence to them if they use violence.

Sheepdoghood.

And in crisis, we can all act like wolves. Think of the last chopper off the roof of the American Embassy in Saigon, or the lifeboats leaving the Titanic.

Wolfdom. Or if you prefer, Predator, though that's not a dirty word like the media would have us believe. Another term is Sociopath.

A working definition of sociopath/wolf is an individual so selfcentered that other people are just tools, obstacles or recreation to him/her. Whether born without the Empathy gene or nurtured in a loveless,uncaring environment, these people really do not care if their actions create suffering.

Some actually get off on it.

We all have a default setting, though and for most of us that's a sheep. Some of us at need become sheepdogs.

I put in 20 years working in Maximum and Medium Security prisons here in MD. I did it because I'm a sheepdog, guarding the society/flock from wolves. Now I work security and in some small way still guard the flock.

In closing, I have just one thing to say.

Woof...

Nolo
August 22, 2008, 10:26 AM
Dave wins the thread.
I agree 100%.

bdickens
August 22, 2008, 10:51 AM
The wolf/sheep/sheepdog analogy is useful as far as it goes, but like any analogy it can fall apart if pushed too far. It is useful because it gives us an idea of predators, prey and protectors. Of course, no analogy is perfect and this one sure isn't.

Clearly, there are those in society who are predators, who care only about their own immediate desires, who don't care what they do to gratify them. Other people exist only as a vehicle for satisfying their wants.

I think where the analogy breaks down is in trying too literally to shove everyone else into the "sheep" or "sheepdog" categories. "Sheep" tends to imply a thoughtless, weak mentality -- one that must be kept in line, one that is incapable of independent thought, one that is helpless against predators and must be reliant on others for protection. Some people here, and elsewhere, use "sheep" as a term of scorn in order to set themselves up as something better.

But sheep are also peaceful creatures that just want to be safe. They want to "lie down in green pastures," do what they do without being bothered, go along, get along and be happy and content.

As human beings, we can choose how we act. We can also be different things at different times. Even the "wolves" among us can be transformed briefly, under the right circumstances, into "sheepdogs," protecting the weaker.

While there are professional "sheepdogs:" police, military and the like who are clearly servants of their master, there are also "sheep" -- people who do their best to live a peaceful existence. Some of them will rise to the occasion when danger rears its ugly head, when that mugger approaches with a knife, when that burglar kicks in the door at 3:00 AM, and transform into "sheepdogs" -- protectors. And in that immediate crisis they do, in fact, become servants. Servants of the family members or the self they are protecting. And when it is all over, they will transform back into peaceful creatures.

Wolf/sheep/sheepdog can be a useful analogy if one takes it in the spirit of its intention and doesn't push it until it breaks down.

Weezy
August 22, 2008, 11:43 AM
"Where do you draw the line"

Quite simply, the line between heroism and vigilantism is drawn between protecting the innocent and punishing the perpetrators.

1911Tuner
August 22, 2008, 02:07 PM
Do y'all even know what a real sheepdog does? Have any of you actually worked with a sheepdog

Yes. I used to raise Collies and Border Collies, and have worked with both breeds extensively...but that's out of context. Sheep/Sheepdog is an analogy only.

See?

Dave made an excellent point that is probably accurate for 90% of us. We can all be sheepdogs/guardians in dire circumstances...provided the circumstance involves "Me and mine" but rarely crosses those defined boundaries. If "it" happens to be someone else's me and mine...it's usually chalked up to "Tough luck, bud. Wish I could help, but I gotta be at Little Suzie's soccer game in a half-hour."

These are probably more aptly called "Mama Bears" because everybody knows that a mama bear is dangerous when her cubs are threatened...so we can add a third category and maybe say that we're all capable of becoming mama bears should the situation dictate aggressive/defensive action. She'll rip you apart if you come between her and the little ones...but another mama's cubs? Nah.

The sheepdog, he are a different animal. Yes indeed...and there really aren't very many of his breed left.

For the 10% who will not or cannot bring themselves to act...even in defense of their young...I propose a fourth description. The Koala Bear. They usually won't even defend themselves, but instead climb to another limb and cry piteously in hopes that someone will come to their rescue....likely because they're so mellow due to those Eucalyptus leaves that they munch on all day...but regardless, the poor Koala is lucky to have survived long enough to reproduce.

And, we're OFF! :D

Gordon Fink
August 22, 2008, 02:33 PM
Thank you, Double Naught.

I think Iíll stick to being human. I like that role and all that it implies.

~G. Fink

springmom
August 22, 2008, 03:25 PM
I don't know about labels, but I know that if I saw something going down like Tuner described early on in this, and didn't intervene, and read about a rape and murder of someone that I saw being kidnapped....

....it'd be pretty hard to look in the mirror.

I might just yell "hey, what's going on here?" I might make it very clear that I was watching and calling on my phone. I swear, some of y'all talk like the only way you can deal with this is with your firearms.

I wrote about this 2 1/2 years ago when my youngest son was attacked. It's at :

http://nousfromspring.blogspot.com/2006/01/between-sow-and-her-cub.html

I think this sort of response is what Tuner was talking about.

Springmom

357WheelGun
August 22, 2008, 03:27 PM
For my own $0.02 on the sheep/sheepdog/wolf, I'll take a line from Rudyard Kipling.

"I am the cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me."

I have little or no use for the herd of sheep. They follow one another for reasons without logic. They worry over the latest exploits of people like Paris Hilton. They twitter about fashion or the goings on in the latest "American Idol". Frankly, I do not much care for them.

None of this is to suggest sympathy for the wolf, however. The wolf makes his living by taking that which others have built. The wolf is not self-sufficient and that is disgraceful. I may not like the sheep, but even I know that to prey upon them is an evil.

There are days when I envy the sheepdogs and their attachment to a flock, but these are rare. The sheepdog pays for his attachment to the flock with his own freedom and I am not yet willing to bind myself in that way. This may change. I am young yet, and single. I know that someday a woman is likely to cause my mind to change, but that is in the future if it is to pass.

So no, I am no sheep. Yet neither am I sheepdog nor wolf. I am content to be a solitary cat, coming and going as I will. What I ask, I ask of sheep, sheepdog, and wolf alike: to be left free to pursue my own path, whatever it may be, so long as it does not stray to evil.

Justin
August 22, 2008, 03:57 PM
This thread's gotten too contentious for its own good.

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