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Survival Diva here with an important preparedness question for everyone. Has your family or group come to an agreement about how to deal with a looter? If not, then you should put a plan into place without delay! Hesitation will cost you precious time that may put you and your loved ones at risk.
The issue was brought home for me when I first moved to my wilderness cabin years ago. At the time, my brother and sister-in-law and several others in our group had arrived for a working weekend to help install insulation and drywall in a shed I’d purchased that would store one years food storage for the 23 people in our group.
The food had already been transferred from the house I’d sold in town to the guest bedroom in my new-to-me cabin, which had formed a comical mountain of jumbled grocery bags filled with canned goods, baking supplies and spices that literally reached the guest rooms windowsills. The rest of bulk food supplies stored in 5-gallon buckets and miscellaneous survival goods crowded the cabin to the point it was difficult to walk in the cramped spaces while we rushed to get the storage shed ready for use.
Once our job of hanging insulation and drywall was done, my sister-in-law and I got busy sorting out the canned goods and spices in preparation for filling the storage shelves several others in the group were building.
Waist deep in grocery bags, sorting through the mountain of food, it dawned on me to ask my sister-in-law a question I should have asked years ago. “I have a question for you. Let’s say SHTF and we were all living here at the cabin. It’s late in the afternoon, and you hear a commotion out at that shed,” I said, pointing through the guest bedroom window to the shed in question. We could both hear hammering as work on the storage shelves progressed that would hug the walls of the shed, which was music to my ears. “Anyway, when you look out the window to inspect, a crazed man is busy taking a crow bar to the chain securing the shed. It’s clear he plans to steal the food and whatever else he can grab. It’s up to you to act. What would you do?” I asked.
My sister-in law had hunted in the past, she can handle herself with firearms, and she is a proficient marksman, but I’d never heard her express an interest in safety matters. Suddenly, I was more than a little interested in her reaction…because it had just occurred to me that we may have a BIG security issue. We had never discussed what we would do if ever we came under attack. There had been no discussion and no agreement as to how we would proceed as a group. I had just always assumed we would defend our supplies without question, because to do otherwise would jeopardize our survival.
I had made a risky assumption, that based upon my sister-in-law’s reply, could prove fatal.
After putting the bag she was sorting through down, her expression as she looked towards me was one of confusion. “I don’t really know what I’d do,” she finally said.
Okay, that wasn’t good…not at all, was my thought. I would’ve thought her reaction would be to warn him to get off the property at the very least. ‘I don’t know’ revealed a critical flaw in our survival quotient. But I wasn’t willing to give up just yet.
“Okay, let’s say this same guy that was going at the shed with a crowbar had a gun tucked into the waistband of his pants. What would you do then?”
She gave me another confused look as she thought over the question. This time her reply took longer. “I don’t know what I’d do.”
I really wasn’t liking the sound of this….not one bit. Suddenly, I had thoughts of the adults in our group having a heated debate over whether or not to use force (lethal or otherwise) to defend our supplies while under attack–we wouldn’t have the luxury to debate! Besides food, many critical preparedness items were in that shed; a tree felling ax, a 2-man cross saw, a $1,600 frost-free manual hand pump for the well that hadn’t been installed yet, all of the manual tools we would need if the grid went down, and more…. Yet, given what I was hearing, we weren’t on the same page with regards to our approach on how to handle a looter.
I’m a glass half-full sorta gal, so I tried for one more, sure-to-generate a correct answer question. “Okay, so this guy with the crowbar is going at the doors of the shed and gaining ground. AND he has a .357 Magnum stuck into the back of his waist band. When he turns towards you, his hair is wild and matted and his eyes are crazed. Another words this guy is basically a Charles Manson clone and he has just reached for his gun. What would you do then?” I asked, hopeful to hear what I needed to hear.
This time a frustrated look was shot in my direction before she answered. “I really don’t know,” she said.
It was official. As a group we had a big problem. Later that night I presented the same question to one of the men in the group and his reply was “I’d drop him.”
Just for clarification, I asked, “So, would you fire a warning shot over his head first?”
His answer didn’t come with any hesitation, “A warning shot would give him time to grab for his gun. I’d drop him.”
The consensus couldn’t be more different. On the one hand there was an “I don’t know”. On the other, it was “I’d drop him”.
Clearly, as a group, we needed to be on the same page BEFORE trouble showed up. Without a uniform agreement, I imagined a major dispute occurring within the group while this crazy person wielding a .357 magnum threatened the safety and survival of everyone in the group; with one person in the group calling out a warning, another insisting on sending a warning shot over the looters head, while another thought it prudent to dispatch the looter altogether.
The clear solution was to agree upon a plan BEFORE a problem arose, so that as a group, we would better be able to insure our safety. We did just that over the next few weeks along with practice drills, so we were able to test our cohesiveness as a group, our reaction time, and our effectiveness. Gone was the hesitation that could have proved deadly and in its place was teamwork that included a safety plan for the elderly and the children in the group which placed them as far from the range of fire as possible.
The same strategy should be in place for all emergencies: earthquakes, wildfires, tornadoes, or a nuclear event. Practicing as a group will improve your odds for survival and keep everyone working as a team!
(David’s note: This is pretty important…if you find yourself in a situation where you must defend yourself from a violent attack, your goal and mindset must be to stop the threat. Not to “kill”, “drop”, or do any other verb to the attacker. Your goal is to stop the threat. There are times where the only way to stop a threat and keep from being violently attacked is to use force that could end up being lethal, but the GOAL is to stop the threat. It would be smart for you to incorporate this verbiage into your thought process and any future conversations concerning self-defense.)
Do you have a safety plan in place for a societal collapse when looters come calling? How about people begging for food/water/supplies? Have you run practice drills to make sure there aren’t any fatal flaws in your plan? Please share your thoughts and experience by commenting below.
Chapter 15 of Implant is now available. You can Click Here to continue reading.
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God bless and stay safe,
David Morris and Survival Diva