LINCOLN -- The Regulators, Lincoln Riding Club's precision drill team, intentionally seeks to influence the conscience of spectators during the 66th annual Lincoln Rodeo Thursday through Saturday by showcasing reverence.
According to Noah Webster's 1828 Dictionary, "when quarrels and factions are carried openly, it is a sign that the reverence of government is lost."
Makes one wonder if Mr. Webster experienced a prophetic glimpse into the future of this nation or was his generation dealing with similar challenges from politicians, who promote strife as a means of furthering their agenda?
In contrast, the Regulators celebrate liberty to express themselves on horseback every chance they get.
Honor U.S. Flag
On Sept. 11, 2018, the Regulators answered a rhetorical question, "Why do we carry the flag?" by posting a short poem on their Facebook Page.
"We carry the flag for our men and women of the armed forces who keep us safe. We carry the flag for the men and women that are policemen, firefighters, and EMS. We carry the flag for our beautiful nation and what she stands for. We carry the flag because, as Americans, we have that right to be patriots. We carry this amazing flag because we will not forget the sacrifices people have paid so we can have the honor of carrying this flag."
The Regulators vary in age from teenagers to women in their fifties and come from various walks of life. Yet, all project reverence for flag and country while carrying the colors of Old Glory and the Arkansas State Flag, as well as other banners when they gallop into the arena.
Dianna Lynn is in her 11th year on a drill team. After a stint with the Rhinestone Cowgirls, she left to become a founding member of the Regulators. Lynn has pursued a Master's degree to become a Special Ed teacher. In addition, she raises horses and in her spare time works with members on horsemanship and technique in doing some of the maneuvers for drill moves. Lynn rides Pep, a 14-year-old sorrel, which she describes as having "a great big heart and a great big attitude."
Webster's 1828 definition of reverence lists the word as a noun meaning "fear mingled with respect and esteem; veneration."
Native American Heritage
At the Lincoln Rodeo, Native Americans and other skilled riders showcase their heritage performing daring feats on horseback while expressing unity between human and horse.
Miss Junior Lincoln Riding Club Judy Gail McNeely, self-described as, "the crazy blonde Indian who rides the stolen war horse," recently described her thrill of performing with the Regulators on her paint, Cletus.
"I have other horses, but not a one of them has a heart as big as his. Every step he takes you can feel the pride strike the ground and make hoof sounds like thunder," Judy Gail states. "He is the lonesome stud lost from the wild Apaches, who found a home with the Cherokees in Westville, Okla. He takes pride when we do our queen run and pride when he short lope's with the American flag. He likes barrels more than poles and he's afraid of no rope. He's a true all-around horse with a little bit of color."
Judy Gail, 15, hails from the small town of Westville, Okla., and is the current title holder for LRC junior queen, which she won during the 2018 Lincoln Rodeo.
Judy Gail is in her third year with the Regulators and says she basically learned everything she knows from this team and her great-uncle. Without either, she wouldn't have the knowledge or the title today.
"They have prepared me to be the young horse woman I am today, and some people would say that's pretty good," Judy Gail said. "My wild paint, Cletus, has been on the team for as long as I have and has learned about as much, and there still is much more to learn, which is why we are very excited about year three. They say third time's a charm."
Heroes Wear Dog Tags
Last Veteran's Day, Nov. 11, 2018, the Regulators noted, "heroes do not wear capes," and issued the following statement.
"One of the greatest privileges of being a Regulator is having the opportunity to honor our service men and women of past and present, who risk their lives or have paid the ultimate sacrifice for us to do what we love every day. We are proud to fly Ol' Glory and our armed forces flags every time we get the chance. Be sure and thank these amazing men and women, not just today but every time you can. God bless our heroes in dog tags."
On May 27 while participating in the Owasso, Okla., military tribute on Memorial Day weekend, the Regulators posted the following statement on their Facebook Page:
"We fly these flags to honor the men and women who risk their lives everyday so we may be free in this wonderful country. We also fly these flags with pride to honor the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for each and everyone of us. It's not about the barbecues today or the three day weekend. It's remembering the brave men and women! We are the land of the free because of the brave!"
The Regulators also declared, "Our heroes wear dog tags," and "(We) love showing respect to our armed forces. Thank you from the bottom of our heart," while acknowledging the sacrifices of the men and women, whose service in the American military allows rodeo spectators to peacefully assemble to cheer on their favorite performers in the sport.
This philosophy has been carried by the Regulators since their formation back when they issued public statements in 2014 such as, "Love showing respect to the men and women who allow us to put on performances."
Sports on 08/07/2019
Print Headline: Regulators Retain Reverence