WSGA: In the News

Date: 7/10/2018 12:00:00 AM


The Wyoming Stock Growers Association (WSGA), as the 146 year-old Wyoming organization that represents the cattle industry in our state, is intrigued by the apparent controversy that has arisen at UW over the planned marketing campaign “The World Needs More Cowboys”. Frankly, we are saddened that some UW faculty are apparently unable to see beyond the literal image of the cowboy.

Yes, we are proud of the true image of the real cowboy or cowgirl, often of very diverse race or ethnicity, riding the range on a well-groomed horse while sporting a cowboy hat, chaps, spurs and a rope. That is an image that we strive to continue even as many modern true cowboys have replaced the horse with a 4-wheeled vehicle.

We are equally proud of the much broader meaning that is attributed to the “cowboy” in modern day Wyoming. Our citizens of all occupations are admired for approaching their work and their lives with the “cowboy spirit” of determination, commitment and honesty. As UW has so aptly stated, “A cowboy is not what you are, but who you are.”

The Code of the West, derived from the book, “Cowboy Ethics” by James P. Owen, which has been adopted by the Wyoming Legislature as the official code of our State, is often referred to as the Cowboy Code and is depicted by a picture of a cowboy nurturing a young calf. The messages in that Code, including “Take Pride in Your Work”; “Be Tough, but Fair”; Ride for the Brand”; and “Remember Some Things are Not for Sale” represent values that are often missing in today’s world. These are cowboy values that should be upheld by our University and instilled into our young men and women.

Yes, the world needs more cowboys.

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