West Side Story


Greg Milliken

West Side Story


I just watched one of my favorite movies, West Side Story, something I'd been meaning to do for a while. I know, it's just a fruity musical, but I see a couple of important lessons in it, which is part of why I like it so much.

First, it portrays these kids as squabling over this petty nonsensical territory. Meanwhile, two of them manage to displace themselves from their respective cultures and find love within each other. So at first the movie is saying there is all this petty bullshit, but when it comes down to it there is so much more out there if you are just willing to hope for it.

Second, the two gangs decide to fight. Maria, one of the two lovers, sends Tony, the other lover, out to stop the fight. He manages to make it and interrupt the fight, but then refuses to fight himself. As a result, the two gang leaders get in a knife fight and Tony's best friend is killed. In a sudden fit of rage Tony kills the rival gang leader.

But if Tony had simply fought the rival gang leader when he had the chance, no one would have died. So the message I see is that fighting with honor is worth pursuing, while fighting with rage or hatred alone will accomplish nothing but more death and destruction.

Which is to say you should fight for the things that bring you honor. Things like fidelity and frot and masculinity, as well as others.

Other people may try to turn you away from those points. They aren't fighting with honor, and their only goal in fighting you is the death and destruction of your character. Especially when they attack those three items which I listed above.

Almost universally these people will have petty and pointless goals in defeating you.

Remember your honor and you will be unassailable.

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