One warm April night we were all sitting around on the Hurst patio of my brother Malcolm McAmis, sipping wine and exploring the Texas cultural phenomenon that is Billy Bob’s (in Ft. Worth) and the appeal and availability of “white lightning” (in the opinion of liquor aficionados) when the careening discussion turned to the Tommy Lee Jones’ movie, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada.

It seems a dangerous undertaking on my part, to comment on the Harper Lee book Go Set a Watchman before it even lands on my Kindle tomorrow, but I must – amidst all the brou-ha-ha surrounding the flawed Atticus Finch as seen in Watchman and the virtuous paragon first introduced in her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, To Kill a Mockingbird.

Perhaps it is only part of the western myth – this idea that there were once level-headed, no-nonsense, reasonable-minded, salt-of-the-earth people who could not be snookered by politicians and other snake oil salesmen – but we sure could use people like that at this stage of our world's development. You know the type I mean – memorialized by western authors in books and movies, often as a crusty old rancher who "thinks on it" for a long while before he gives you his hand.