Firearms, Self-Defense, and Natural Disaster

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Firearms, Self-Defense, and Natural Disaster

I’ve seen every Mad Max movie. I watch “The Walking Dead” like it’s my job. I love the fantasy of life in a post-apocalyptic setting and all the gut-punching stories you can place there.

But, I also live in the real world. More than that, I’ve been in a few war zones and in some genuinely nasty situations when the grid went down and the Powers-That-Be had bugged out of town leaving us peons to our own devices. And while it’s fun to fantasizes about gearing up and rampaging across the burning waste of civilization, the fact is that this approach can get you killed.

Most of us won’t face a grid collapse or a war zone, but after watching Hurricane Matthew slap the Atlantic South around it occurs to me that natural disasters can put us in positions that come pretty close. I want to talk here about the role that armed self defense, particularly with firearms, is likely to play when an earthquake or a hurricane comes a-knockin’.

First off, get the macho daydreams out of your head, sunshine. You won’t be engaging multiple targets in pitched firefight with local goons unless things go horribly wrong. You’re more likely to sit inside, complain about the heat/cold/lack of utilities, and eat canned food. Maybe you’ll run off the occasional looter or errant teenager.  So don’t go looking for trouble or start digging fighting positions on your front lawn. A bit of discretion is really the important thing.

Second, keep your guns out of sight if at all possible. Open carry is a touchy subject under normal circumstances and more so when the power has been out for three days. People get edgy, tempers fray, and someone looking for a new piece might start eying yours. And remember what happened post-Hurricane Katrina. Unable to tell the armed good guys from the armed bad guys, the cops just started disarming everyone. Most of those weapons were never returned to their rightful owners, and a lot of people got thumped around or arrested during confiscation. So play it cool and keep your stuff out of sight.

Thirdly, be realistic about your capabilities. You most likely won’t face a violent problem, as folks are pretty civilized in general. However, large scale looting and mob violence can happen in a community temporarily without rule of law. And—incoming reality check, sunshine—you won’t be masterfully gunning your way through the crowd like an 80’s action hero. Alone, you’re toast. Network with your neighbors, make a plan for the community as a whole, and work together and you’ll stand a much better chance of making it through unharmed and relatively unmolested.

It’s like they always say: the key is common sense and common sense ain’t that common. But if you plan ahead and keep your head, you should be just fine.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I’m going to go watch Fury Road again. A man can dream at least.

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  • rustyknight17

    Generally agree save for the ” Alone you’re toast.”. My experience indicates otherwise.
    I’ve been in several confrontations and was always outnumbered yet I’m still here.

    • Custer had similar thoughts.

      • rustyknight17

        And your point is ? Custer went into the Little Big Horn arrogantly assuming that the Sioux and Cheyenne couldn’t fight as well as his troops. I don’t make such mistakes.

        • Custer believed in Custer’s luck. He had his horse shot out from under him 11 times in the civil war. This lead to his over confidence. As far as the little big horn, it’s was a confluence of bad recon data and his desire to “win” and go to the democrat national convention to announce his candidacy. Yes, he had aspirations. The BIA told him that there were at most 4000 total natives there, not 12-15K and on top of that he rushed into it because he wanted all the glory for himself instead of waiting for Terry and Crook. The reason for the BIA numbers is that they cooked the books to gouge the government for supplies and food that they used for the reservations. They’d get more than they needed and sold the rest on the side and pocketed funds. SO, it was a confluence of factors that led to his demise.

  • Start digging trenches, fortify areas of the home to .50cal. fire.
    The goons WILL be Government & they have some mighty toys.
    Prepare molotov cocktails.

    • We’re so outclassed that it would be a rout and we would be canon fodder. There would be nowhere to hide. The best we could hope for would be that the soldiers would stand down.

      • If you do nothing you get nowhere, the air cavalry will run out of fuel sooner or later.
        But my recommendation is truly to unite & revolt, take back our military bases first, it would be some much easier afterwards.

        • I don’t think you know what we’d be up against. The military has fuel reserves that probably last a year or two. I just don’t see people uniting in enough numbers and having the technology. I also don’t see this scenario happening at all. It’s not in the best interests of the company town as I like to call it and people today are more inclined to acquiesce.

          • If that is true, we are doomed & heading towards slavery.
            It only takes a company (1000) of men to take control of a military base.

          • And try keeping control, and then of what? Also, I thought a company was around 300, or 6 platoons?

          • One of 2 things, clean out the base & use the equipment for our revolution, or destroy all equipment preventing them for using it against us. It’s 4-5 platoons, supposedly 6 but have not seen it, but allegedly a full platoon is 200 men. We’re comparing max. statistics vs. reality. Each captured base would facilitate the destruction of the states main FBI & PDs. Taking back even more of their equipment.
            Then when we have Air, Land & Sea at our fingertips, we can hunt the Bosses of the Mafia world wide (& the middle men government that think they can escape). Yes, we need to make lists.

          • In my limited experience, platoons are usually 50 people. 4 squads each or 8 teams, then you have a platoon sergeant and lieutenant.

          • Yes that’s the short number, the military has conflicting ideas on needing recruits vs. how many promotion points they have.
            SSGs performed as Platoon Sergeants because of no promotion points. Most times you have a 1LT and a 2LT.

          • Air? Who will fly your planes?

          • 22.5mil. veterans means we have many and many civilian pilots. It’s not rocket science, you learn it.

  • Fred Miller

    Discretion is the better part of valor. I have enough food for my family for two meals a day for a year and a half, can filter 10,000 gallons of water and 2000 gallons of radioactive water, have more than ample medical supplies, lighting, shelter. There is 175 gallons of gasoline, fifty gallons of kero, electronic devices and things like flashlights, solar lamps, two way radios, etc are kept in a Faraday cage. We have semiauto rifles, shotguns and a variety of handguns with 50,000 rounds, knives, gas masks, fresh body armor, clean suits, etc. Our neighbors are as prepared as we are, and we’re all law enforcement or military (or ex), so we have training and experience to boot. We’re also in a small town 20 miles away from a heavier populated area. If there were some kind of extreme emergency of SHTF type of scenario, we’d fair better than most. We even have a combined wealth of gold, silver and precious gems, and cases of booze, and stored is about 300 yards of concerta wire. However, we keep things quiet. No need to let everybody else know what we have until such time is necessary (ie, when we need to gather and arm). You want mine? You’d better bring plenty of yours.

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