gun owners

All posts tagged gun owners

cleaning kit

By Frank – Modern Survival Online

Did you know that every time you fire your gun, a small amount of carbon, copper, lead and plastic residue is left in the chamber and barrel? If you don’t take the time to clean your gun after firing it, this residue (known as fouling) can build up over time and eventually have a devastating effect on your gun and effect its reliability.

There aren’t any rules for when to clean your gun. Each gun is different and each type of ammunition is different as well, making it impossible to make standard gun cleaning rules. However, over the years I’ve picked up a few tips from hunters, gunsmiths, retired law enforcement and military.

Gun Cleaning Kits and Solvents

Before you can begin cleaning your firearms, you’re going to need the right tools. Generally, the least expensive option for people with a few different guns is a simple universal gun cleaning kit and a good bottle of solvent. Purchasing all the tools separately will cost you a bit more money. Currently, many of the best gun cleaning kits on the market are very inexpensive.

Cleaning Rods:

The most important tool in your kit is going to be the gun cleaning rod. This tool is used to attach brushes, jags, and mops. You want your cleaning rod to be made of a soft material such as brass. A material that’s harder than the barrel of your gun can easily scratch the inside of the barrel.

Continue reading at Modern Survival Online: Gun Cleaning 101 – Clean Your Guns the Right Way

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By Jeremiah Johnson – Ready Nutrition

ReadyNutrition Readers, the purpose of this article is to list the many reasons why it is important to own a firearm.  It is a choice that certainly is your right to exercise or not to exercise: to have a firearm in your home.  This piece is not to present a moral basis for ownership, but rather the practical reasons it is important to exercise your 2nd Amendment rights.  The moral questions are best answered in the privacy of your own home according to the way your family lives and worships.

Your Right To Defend Yourself

That being said, the primary reason for ownership of a firearm is defense.  This used to be a requirement during the days of the American Revolution and upon the founding of the United States.  If you do your research, most of the State Constitutions for states that are “border states,” meaning upon the outer edges of the United States…these states had provisions that either required or requested the citizens residing in them to own a firearm.  Why?  Because the U.S. citizen is the cornerstone of the phrase “common defense” in the preamble of the Constitution.


The United States is a nation formed by citizen-soldiers who knew their first responsibility to the nation involved taking up arms on its behalf…for the good of all.  That hasn’t changed. 


The bottom line for the 2nd Amendment (equally as important) is that if our government ever “morphs” into a tyranny that attempts to subvert individual rights under the Constitution…the ability of citizens to bear arms is a recourse to that tyranny.

The average citizen has been conditioned for more than 100 years to place all faith in the government.  Soldiery nowadays is not generally viewed as an honorable profession, but rather as a “necessary evil” that you only do “when there are no other options available to you.”  We had a Secretary of State (John Kerry) that publicly expostulated that drivel.

Six Benefits Firearms Have for the Average Joe Prepper

Firearms ownership and knowledge of them have many benefits.  Let’s cover some of them, shall we?

  1. Hunting: In either a survival or non-survival scenario, you must put meat on the table. Hunting is the way to do it, and firearms make it easier. In recent articles I have recommended the Winchester ’94, an outstanding lever-action rifle in 30-30 caliber.
  2. Home Defense: This varies from state-to-state with gun ownership laws and what you can or cannot do, per the law, with the firearms. Some states (Montana being one of them) have the “castle” doctrine…where if a threat is perceived, the homeowner can take action.  Other states will practically sue you if you don’t offer the burglar/rapist a meal when he breaks in.  My personal rule is simple: it’s better to be judged by 7 than carried by 6.  A firearm can prevent Mr. Rapist from carrying out his plans. Some ladies carry around a Saturday Night Special to deter unwelcome advances or perhaps some of these firearm suggestions would do the trick.
  3. SHTF Collapse: Yes, either the EMP has struck or the economy has collapsed…or both. What then?  When the marauders are coming down the street, do you pick up a bullhorn and tell them to leave or you’ll call the police?  Do you think that “Brinks” sign on the front lawn will cause them to shiver and shudder and move away?  The answer to both questions is probably “No,” and I guarantee…that Mossberg 500-A 12 gauge pump will be the best. I’ve gone into a lot of detail on the subject in this article. As well, consider the .357, .45 ACP and these other post-collapse firearms.
  4. Barterable Skill Post SHTF: Yes, the ability to reload cartridges or repair firearms will be a barterable skill…and a skill you will need for yourself with a collapse. Consider diversifying your ammunition for this very reason.
  5. Legacy to your Family: Don’t those words sound great? What they mean is that with proper instruction on the use of, safety with, and care of your firearms, you’re giving your children an education in something that they can use the rest of their lives…it’s their birthright as American citizens to have the right to own and keep firearms.  Why not give them a head start and show them all the fundamentals?
  6. Sport: Yes, sport! You can develop your marksmanship skills on targets…paper targets and at different ranges and clubs.  You and/or the kids can all compete in matches.  Sometimes there are prizes in the form of money, equipment, etc., that can be won when competing.  There are no limits except the ones you set upon yourself.

Other Considerations

Preppers, I must stress how important it is to maintain your weapons, as well as to having as much support equipment for your firearm as possible.  A good cleaning kit with all the component parts for multiple calibers is essential. You can make your own cleaning kit with these items.  Another thing you need is a gunsmith’s tool kit.  They’re precisioned for the set-screws and special screws for mounts, scopes, and the firearm in general.  Along with other things, such as reloading kits and presses, optics, and other books and videos to make you a well-rounded marksman.

As well as basic maintenance, I must emphasize the important of practicing regularly with your firearms. It is one thing to be a fast shot, but it is more important to be an accurate one. Read more about tips to improve your marksmanship here.

To summarize, firearms have held their place above the mantelpiece and mounted on the wall in American homes since even before the days of the American Revolution.  Firearms are a part of your American citizenship heritage, and they can serve a multitude of needs and functions.  For further training, hook up with a veteran or a qualified NRA instructor, and get started on something that is your fundamental right under the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.  Keep that powder dry, and keep fighting that good fight!  JJ out!

About the author:

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition: A Green Beret’s Guide to Prepper Firearms 

 

boxes of ammo

By Dan Stevens – Modern Survival Online

Whether you are a frequent shooter or not, stocking up on ammo is a must for any prepper. Not only is ammo useful for self defense in a SHTF situation, but it will also be needed for hunting and trade.

Because it is so useful, robust, and doesn’t expire quickly, ammo will most likely become the new currency when money fails.

That’s why it’s critical that you not only stock up on ammo, but also know how to store your ammo so that it can last for decades.

By doing this, you can avoid ammo shortages and potential future bans. It also gives you a more certain supply of ammo for hunting, shooting, and self defense.

In this article, we are going to take a look at the top 7 tips for storing your ammo long term so that you’ll know exactly what you need to do to keep your ammo in tip top shape across decades.

  1. Calibers

There is a lot of debate out there on which type of guns are best for survival situations. Chances are you already have your preference and have acquired your desired firearms.

While there is no specific correct answer here, we have to pay attention to what the most popular calibers are out there and consider stocking up on that type of ammo for potential future value.

Some of us will have chosen firearms for these popular calibers, which makes storing ammo for them that much easier. Even if you don’t have firearms in these calibers, you should think about storing some popular ammo for future barter.

For example, some of the most high demand calibers include: .22 LR, .223, .270, .308, and 30-06.

When you start looking at the most popular guns out there, then these calibers start making sense. For example, the AR platform is a top choice among Americans. Typically, the majority of folks get an AR-15 as one of their primary guns.

Continue reading at Modern Survival Online: 7 Ammo Storage Tips Every Gun Owner Should Know

winterfirearm

By Jeremiah Johnson – Ready Nutrition

Many guys and gals may wonder, “Why do we have to maintain firearms in the wintertime, since we’re not using them as much?” Well, there are different conditions to deal with in the wintertime that may affect your firearms adversely.  Many will just wrap them up in plastic after coating them with Cosmoline or some other lubricant-preservative.  This does not necessarily protect them from changing conditions during the wintertime that may go unnoticed.

First, I stress that you should clean and inspect your weapons at a minimum of once per week.  If it is done less frequently, then you must take several factors into consideration: temperature, change in temperature, humidity, sunlight, and location your firearms are kept/stored.  If you happen to have a temperature/climate-controlled gun storage safe or the equivalent, then you can “whittle” your time down for disassembly and inspection of your firearm.  For the rest of us (myself included), a regular maintenance program is essential.

Depending on where in your house you store your firearm and how you store it (in a gun safe, or a moisture-controlled case, for example) will dictate the challenges you’ll face.  Alternating temperatures cause some problems.  If you have a home that (when you’re inside of it) the temperature is kept at 70 degrees F or such, if the temperature drops to say 50 or 60, you may have problems with moisture.  The weather (and the relative humidity) will also be a factor.


Metal tends to “sweat” with a change in temperature, that is for condensation to build up, especially when the change is drastic or sudden.


You’ve been outside all day hunting that deer with your Winnie ’94 30-30.  You just came into the house, and after kicking off your boots you hung your Winnie ’94 up on the gun rack.  Guess what?  In about ten to fifteen minutes, even if you were as dry as dust coming through the door…the weapon will have condensation all over it from the sudden change in temperature.

Another scenario is that you must vent out the house a bit: your woodstove has been on “overdrive” and you need to air out the place just a tad.  It’s raining outside and humid.  When that cold air and moisture wafts inside, guess where it’ll go?  Yep, right onto the barrel and mechanism of that trusty rifle you have hanging over the mantelpiece.

Another one is that you have a rack in your bedroom, and you opened the drapes to allow a little sunlight into the room…and it just happened to hit your rifle on the rack.  The rifle gains about 20 degrees from the sun, and then when it leaves, the coolness of the room and the weapon’s proximity to the window causes the sweating.

During the wintertime, it isn’t enough just to pack it all up and wait until the springtime.  As far as things are with me, the only time I would ever pack one up is if I’m transporting it somewhere and it needs to be encased and protected for a few days to a week.  Other than that, I stick to my regular maintenance schedule.  First thing you do, is wipe off any excess moisture on the weapon.  Then completely disassemble it and carry out an inspection of all your parts.  You are looking for any debris and any buildup of ferrous oxide (that’s rust!) from excessive moisture.  There shouldn’t be any.

The reason there shouldn’t be is that there will not be…if you carry out a regular program of maintenance.  You haven’t fired it; however, you can still run patches through the bore with a light coating of lube on them.  Clean off any rust and oil all your parts.  It protects from rust or moisture.

Also, want to save a little money?  You don’t have to bankrupt yourself on those stingy little bottles of lube/gun oil…a 3 or 4-ounce bottle…for 7 or 8 dollars.  Go buy yourself a quart of 5W/30 Mobil Synthetic oil.  We used to use it in the service, and I still use it now.  Does the job just as good and (most of the time) better than those cheap, thin, junk oils such as Hoppe’s or Remington’s or the like.  A quart will last you a long time, and then you just refill the small bottles that you normally use with it.

Same for patches.  Take an old t-shirt, sheet, or pillowcase.  Cut out your squares on your own, and also cut yourself some 1’ squares for general purpose weapons cleaning rags.  These can be washed and then reused a couple of times.  Use a bristle brush of some kind and brush the oil vigorously all over your working parts, and then wipe off any carbon and/or rust you have.  Then give it a fresh coat (thin), and reassemble the weapon.  Voila!  Your weapon is good to go.  Make sure that when you reassemble it that you perform a functions check on it, and ensure that it has been reassembled properly without any glitches.

One thing you can also do is to “shroud” your weapons.  This is merely covering them as they are on a rack with a sheet of some kind.  Try to match the surrounding colors of the room.  If you have a white wall, then a white sheet would be a good thing.  This keeps dust from settling on the weapon, and any ash/soot from the woodstove, as well.  It also keeps your weapons out of sight for when some “snoopy” human comes over to the front door, such as the ever-present, never-reliable neighbors, or some door-to-door sales clown, or some other pest.  The less they see the better.

Minimum of once per week per firearm.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, as Ben Franklin once said.  Protect them within a case for when you’re traveling, and remember to give them a good wiping down and a thorough lube when you reach your destination.  Maintain that firearm at all times, and it’ll see you through, whether you’re hunting deer or stopping someone from breaking into your home.  Keep that powder dry and stay in that good fight!  JJ out!

This information has been made available by Ready NutritionThe Importance of Firearms Maintenance in the Wintertime

 About the author:

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

 

Colt 1911 Series 70

By Nicholas – Modern Survival Online

Easily one of the most iconic and beloved semi-automatic pistols of all time, the 1911 is a timeless design that has been around for over a hundred years and will likely be around for a hundred more.

But what makes the 1911 so adored by shooters? Just as importantly, what specific brands of 1911 stand out above the rest and should be the top ones for you to consider should you decide to buy a 1911?  We’ll answer these questions in this article.

WHAT MAKES THE 1911 SO GREAT?

The reality is that there is a great multitude of things that make the 1911 a great pistol. The 1911 is not for everyone. There are pistols out there that are lighter, simpler, and carry more bullets, but no one can deny that there are specific attributes about the 1911 that have made it such an enduring pistol.

These attributes include:

  • Accuracy. The 1911 is a highly accurate pistol thanks to its fixed barrel design, light trigger, soft recoil, and longer sight radius. Is it the most accurate production pistol made? That’s debatable, but its accuracy is a major plus.
  • Light Trigger. The trigger of the 1911 alone makes it a dream to shoot. It’s very light and crisp, with a relatively short reset. The light trigger pull makes it unsafe to carry the 1911 chambered and cocked without the safety on, so you must train yourself to manually switch off the safety when drawing the weapon to fire. Nonetheless, the trigger on the 1911 is one of the biggest appeals. It makes it an excellent handgun to shoot for target practice, competition, or for tactical training.
  • Slim Design. The 1911 is a naturally slim possible, which means shooters with smaller hands can comfortably grip the weapon and it’s easy to conceal carry. The obvious trade-off is fewer bullets in the magazine (the standard 1911 magazine holds either 7 or 8 rounds).

Continue reading at Modern Survival Online: Top 5 Brands of 1911 to Own

gun-449783_1280

Image Source: Pixabay.com

By The Survival Place Blog

The topic of children and guns has been a hot one, over the last few years. With accidents claiming the lives of children across the world, it’s easy to see why. But, most people’s reaction to this, is to never expose their kids to guns at all. This doesn’t work very well, though, if you’re a gun owner. Or, even if you just want your kids to be as safe as possible.

It’s important to be aware of the dangers of having guns around your little ones, so this post will go through some of the things to think about. Obviously, it’s ultimately your choice as a parent, as to how you treat your children. So, just use this for reference.

Safety In The Home

If you keep guns at home, there are certain measures you need to take. Keeping a gun in a draw or under a bed doesn’t really cut it. If you want to keep guns at home, ideally you should have a gun safe. Obviously, these are expensive and mainly to deter theft. If you want a more affordable alternative, you can look into other lockable containers.

Any guns that you carry, keep in the car or have to leave out, should all be unloaded with ammo far away. A young child will find it very hard to load a gun; but older children, with some experience, can be a much bigger danger. Keeping ammo and the weapon separate limits the risk dramatically.

Education

Starting from a young age, you should educate your children surrounding gun safety. Teaching your children that guns are dangerous, and should only be used in emergencies, will give them a good respect for the risks involved. You should also teach them that the guns in your home are off limits. Let them know where the guns are kept, under lock and key, but assert that they are never to be played with.

As your child gets older, you’ll want to give them some hands-on education. It is better to start with a BB gun or Airgun, before moving on to a real one. This will give you an opportunity to teach your children to handle guns correctly, without the danger of a real gun. You won’t struggle to find airsoft guns for sale, and they’re very affordable.

Teaching your children early on and throughout their lives will build their confidence. Confidence is key in avoiding accidents. Someone with more confidence will handle a weapon with greater precision and purpose.

Observation

Once you have taught your children, you need to watch them. Study how they operate and handle the weapons they use. This will give you a good insight into how you should proceed with further education.

Never leave your children alone with a weapon. Most accidents involving children and guns are as a result of no supervision. Children rarely want to hurt themselves or others; you just need to watch that they don’t make a mistake.

Hopefully, this will give you somewhere to start. Make sure that you research the laws and regulations that apply to your home. You can seek advice from your government and professionals if you’re still concerned.

This article first appeared at The Survival Place Blog: Keep Those Whipper Snappers Safe: Gun Saftey And Kids

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

The cautionary tale that is the rather spectacular collapse of Venezuela continues. Were you aware that Venezuela banned guns for private citizens a mere four years ago, in 2012? Although the country was already in trouble, it seems like that was the beginning of the end.

Under the reign of Hugo Chavez, the government introduced a law that banned personal purchases of firearms and ammunition in an attempt to “improve security and cut crime”. The law was designed to keep guns in the hands of only police, military, and some security companies.

At the time, Chavez’s government said that “the ultimate aim is to disarm all civilians.” Shortly after the law passed, Chavez lost a battle to cancer, and bus driver Nicolas Maduro became the new president.

Maduro invested $47 million in “disarmament centers” in 2014, where citizens could turn in their firearms without fear of repercussions. This was at about the same time as the government declared that prepping was illegal and those “hoarding” could be detained on criminal charges and when the country instituted a fingerprint registry for purchasing groceries so that they could ensure people only purchased what they were allotted.

But Who Does Disarmament Really Protect?

Does a gun ban actually reduce crime? Is the reduction of crime truly the motive behind disarmament? Or is disarmament actually an effort to make it more difficult for those who object to subjugation to fight back?

It’s interesting to note that nearly all repressive regimes take away the means for the citizens to stand up for their rights. Right before the proverbial S hit the F in Venezuela, guns were taken away from the general public. It was then a slippery slope into chaos as the government failed, socialism itself failed, and the country collapsed.

However, now that the people are ready to revolt against Maduro’s government, they no longer have the means to do so. It’s suicide for unarmed people to fight the well-armed military, something that the government undoubtedly counted on when Venezuela banned guns, disarming the populace.

Meanwhile In America

There are some unnerving parallels we can draw to the disarmament of Venezuela and the plans for America.

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is adamantly anti-gun. Her own website has a long list of the anti-gun measures she has supported. Make no mistake, if she gets the magical president’s pen, there will be anti-gun Executive Orders. She could also be the person responsible for choosing Supreme Court Justice Scalia’s empty seat, which will not bode well for the next challenge to the Second Amendment heard by the highest court in the land.

If you’re wondering how this relates to Venezuela, it’s simple.

Our ship here in the US is sinking.

Our economy is in the toilet. We may be watching a premonition of our future down there in South America, with riots at the grocery store. With abject poverty. With the third world medical care.

And if the wrong person is making Executive Orders and appointing Supreme Court Justices, gun owners could be targeted.

The American government doesn’t really represent the American people anymore. Do you feel that your wishes are taken into consideration when corrupt politicians benefit from big corporations against the desires of their constituents?  Our system is broken, and every day we lose rights, incrementally.

The Second Amendment is not in place so people can go hunting for deer. Thomas Jefferson summed it up. “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”

If you’re watching Venezuela, you understand why you need to be armed.

There are many lessons you can learn from analyzing the fall of Venezuela, like what items they have run out of that you should be stocking up on. You should be buying long-term food, stocking up on medical needs, and preparing for a down-grid scenario.

But as the country descends into chaos, you must also see how it got there. An armed society is a polite society. You’re seeing via the news report what happens to a disarmed society.

There’s a distinct pattern when society breaks down, and as our society becomes more desperate, poverty-stricken, and lacking of moral compass, this trend will become more obvious. Note that the “lacking of moral compass” part doesn’t just refer to the thugs rioting and looting, but also to a certain sector of cops who think that their badges give them permission to behave like street thugs, too.

Here’s the pattern:

  • An outrage occurs.
  • Good people react and protest the outrage.
  • Those perpetrating the outrage try to quell the protest because they don’t think that the outrage was actually outrageous.  (And whether it was or not can fluctuate – in some cases, force is necessitated, but in more and more cases, it is flagrantly gratuitous.)
  • Others react to the quelling and join the protest.
  • A mob mentality erupts. Thugs say, “Hey, it’s a free for all. I’m gonna get some Doritos and while I’m at it, beat the crap out of some folks for fun.”
  • All hell breaks loose.
  • The military gets called in.
  • Cities burn, neighborhoods get destroyed, and no one in the area is safe.
  • Cops act preemptively, out of fear, and for a time, there is no rule of law.
  • If you happen to be stuck there, know this: you’re completely on your own.

Tess Pennington wrote about societal breakdowns in more detail – read her excellent article for more information on these predictable scenarios. In an event like this, you can try to call 911, but most likely, the police aren’t going to be coming to save you. You will be completely on your own. Will you be an unarmed, yet law-abiding citizen, hoping to somehow fend off the criminals who must have missed the memo to turn in their firearms? Good luck with that.

Here are 3 reasons why preppers need to be armed.

The thing that I believe it’s important to remember here is that if you have stacked your supplies to the rafters but refused to plan for defending your home and family, you’ve basically just made them bait should a desperate situation arise.

Just in case you think that chaos and violence only happen in places like Venezuela, where they’re undergoing a full-on collapse, the following examples are all from America.

Reason #1: Those who are desperate, unprepared, and feel entitled to be cared for

Remember Black Friday?  People climbed all over each other for cheap electronics. Fist fights erupted over vegetable steamers. People were ready to throw down and do battle for sale items.

I’d hazard a guess that folks who spend time and money fighting over electronics are not the kind of people who prep. That means that these are the people who will be hungry in a long-term disaster.  Look at those people, stampeding to get to a sale on things that they don’t actually need to survive. Their inhibitions are loosened because those around them are behaving in the same way.

You have to look at the psychology of this. People can justify pretty much anything when they or their children are starving. And I can understand that to a large degree – who could stand to watch their babies suffering?  But if someone can devolve to the above degree just to because everyone else is doing it, the chaos we saw above is only a tiny sample of what could come if people were truly hungry.

Do you really feel like you could prepare them one meal and they’d go away politely? Do you really think that reason and a polite but firm conversation will be sufficient to make them go away? It only takes one person to start the charge against you in a tense scenario, and when that happens, unless you take swift and shocking action, the others will follow, and your retreat will be overcome. Sort of like when the walkers overtook the prison after the fence got knocked down on The Walking Dead.

Reason #2: Those who are planning to take the supplies of others

But wait, there’s something even worse out there than the hungry unprepared. There are the folks who have built an entire preparedness plan around taking the things that other preppers have stored. Remember this guy from another episode of Doomsday Preppers?

If you aren’t ready for people like this, your survival retreat is a soft, easy target. These people are not nice, but desperate. Their entire survival plan hinges on taking what someone else has amassed using superior force. This yahoo (who was subsequently arrested after his appearance on Doomsday Preppers) blatantly explains his plan, and I can guarantee that he is not alone. He’s just the one dumb enough to announce it on national television.

These are the types of people who are only careful about breaking the law because they don’t want to be caught. If a situation arises in which being caught and thrown in prison is unlikely, it will be a free-for-all. Morals and ethics won’t stop them, because they don’t have any. The only thing capable of stopping people like that is people who are able and ready to defend their homes

Reason #3: Those who loot and pillage because, doggone it, they like it

Finally, there are those who simply enjoy mayhem.

Some people are just waiting for the opportunity to behave in this fashion. They enjoy destroying things and venting their anger on any person who has “more” than they do. They’d love to act like that every single day, but they don’t want to spend the rest of their lives in jail. But when a verdict gets rolled out, when a storm takes out the power, when a disaster strikes, they delight in the chance to rob, pillage, loot, and burn.  Who can forget the day before Superstorm Sandy hit the East Coast, when thugs were coordinating looting rampages via Twitter?

Here was the scene in Ferguson, Missouri. These are definitely not folks out fulfilling needs.

I remember learning about “sublimation” in a high school psychology class.

Sublimation is a defense mechanism that allows us to act out unacceptable impulses by converting these behaviors into a more acceptable form. For example, a person experiencing extreme anger might take up kickboxing as a means of venting frustration. Freud believed that sublimation was a sign of maturity that allows people to function normally in socially acceptable ways. (source)

If you believe Freud’s theory, then it’s easy to see that many people look for an excuse to revert to their true natures.  In a situation where “everyone” is doing something, they are able to cast off their normal control of their impulses without much fear of reprisal. The number of looters and thugs far outstrips the number of arrests going on in Baltimore, so there’s a very good chance that someone swept up in that mentality can go burn somebody else’s home or business and completely get away with it.

These are the people who burned down their own neighborhoods after the verdict in Ferguson. And what businesses were left untouched? The ones for which the owners stood out front, armed, to defend their property.

You owe it to your family to be ready to protect them.

What if the world as we know it ended? What if there wasn’t food in the grocery stores? What if there was no longer any such thing as EBT, for those who have made a career out of milking the system? What if the police and military finally threw their hands up in the air, gave up, and went home to protect their own families?  What if the scenes on social media from Venezuela become the scenes from America? Who’s going to keep your family safe then?

You are.

You have to realize that at any point in time, you could find yourself on your own, without backup from 911.

Whether civil unrest is right outside your door.

Whether a group of thugs decides to invade your home to rob and/or terrorize you.

Whether the world we know goes down, via an EMP that takes out the grid,  civil war, economic collapse, or a breakdown in the national transportation network.

The only person you can rely on to protect your family is yourself.

You can stockpile until you have a decade of supplies put back, but if you can’t defend it, you don’t actually own it. You only have it because no one has bothered taking it away from you yet.  You have what you have based on the goodwill of others, who are stronger, greater in number, and better armed.

Take a long hard look at the threats you face during civil unrest, and develop a plan for protecting your retreat. Wherever you live, whatever your situation, you need to plan as though 911 does not exist. Whether riots are occurring in the streets or not, in the seconds during which the lives of your family hang in the balance, you are completely on your own.

In some situations, it won’t stop with the destruction of your property. You may have to defend your home. And for this, you MUST BE ARMED.

I’m sure I’ll receive another barrage of email wishing me and my children dead by our own guns. (It always amazes me how people who swear vehemently that they’re against violence can send me those letters that fervently hope for bloody and terrifying deaths for us.) Some people are so terrified of self-defense tools that the very idea of using one causes veritable spasms of cognitive dissonance and denial.

Those very same people will tell you that they’ve survived riots or unrest and never had to have a gun or shoot anyone.

And do you know what?

Chances are, you won’t have to unholster your weapon. But this is a plan based on pure luck and the goodwill of others. Survival favors the prepared. I do not base my preparations for my family on the hope for good luck and nice people.

Firearms are an equalizer. A small woman can defend herself from multiple large intruders with a firearm if she’s had some training and knows how to use it properly. But put a kitchen knife in her hand against those same intruders, and her odds decrease exponentially.

You are your own first responder.

If the situation does escalate and the lives of you and your loved ones are in danger, there is no substitute for meeting force with force. You may not wish to engage, but sometimes there’s no time to escape. Sometimes there’s no place to escape to. In these situations, you won’t be able to talk your way out of it, hide from it, or throw dishes at the intruders to fight them off.

When you need help in seconds, the police are only minutes away. By the time they arrive during a collapse scenario, your family will be dead, raped, or kidnapped, and your supplies will be long gone.

If you plan to survive a scenario of civil unrest or a Mad Max society meltdown, you are going to have to accept that  preppers need guns. This doesn’t mean that you want to hurt someone. It means that you intend to keep your loved ones safe by any means necessary.

Here are a few tips to prepare a home defense plan.

Your plan has to be unique to your situation. Be sure when making your plan to take into consideration things like: the layout of your property, your family, and their skill sets, your comfort with firearms, your neighbors – the list of variables goes on and on

Here are some specifics to help you begin planning.

Know how to use your firearm. Whatever your choice of weapon, practice, practice, practice. A weapon you don’t know how to use is more dangerous than having no weapon at all.  You have to spend time at the range. It’s a must. During a stressful, frightening situation, you will be relying on muscle memory, so make sure the muscles are well trained.  I’m not a firearms instructor, so I can’t recommend “the best gun” for preppers. The guns I chose for my rural property aren’t necessarily the same ones I’d choose if I lived in Suburbia. Every situation is different, and your firearm choice should reflect that. (Here’s some advice from someone who knows a lot more about weapons than I do to help you with that decision.)

Make sure your children are familiar with the rules of gun safety. Of course, it should go without saying that you will have pre-emptively taught your children the rules of gun safety so that no horrifying accidents occur. In fact, it’s my fervent hope that any child old enough to do so has been taught to safely and effectively use a firearm themselves. Knowledge is safety.

Spend time making a plan unique to your situation. You need to prepare your battlespace and make plans for defending it. Those plans will be different based on your experience and that of people in your family or group. For example, a family of preppers in the suburbs would  most likely have a very different plan than a group of former military guys protecting a compound.

Don’t rely on 911. If the disorder is widespread, don’t depend on a call to 911 to save you – you must be prepared to save yourself.  First responders may be tied up, and in some cases, the cops are not always your friends.  In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, some officers joined in the crime sprees, and others stomped all over the 2nd Amendment and confiscated people’s legal firearms at a time when they needed them the most.

Be armed and keep your firearm on your person.  When the door of your home is breached, you can be pretty sure the people coming in are not there to make friendly conversation over a nice cup of tea.  Make a plan to greet them with a deterring amount of force. Be sure to keep your firearm on your person during this type of situation, because there won’t be time to go get it from your gun safe. Don’t even go to the kitchen to get a snack without it. Home invasions go down in seconds, and you have to be constantly ready.

Have a safe room established for children or other vulnerable family members. If the worst happens and your home is breached, you need to have a room into which family members can escape.  This room needs to have a heavy exterior door instead of a regular hollow core interior door. There should be communications devices in the room so that the person can call for help, as well as a reliable weapon to be used in the unlikely event that the safe room is breached. The family members should be instructed not to come out of that room FOR ANY REASON until you give them the all clear or help has arrived. You can learn more about building a safe room HERE.  Focus the tips for creating a safe room in an apartment to put it together more quickly.

Plan an escape route.  If the odds are against you, devise a way to get your family to safety.  Your property is not worth your life. Be wise enough to know if you’re getting into a fight that you can’t win.

Civilization is just a veneer.

Only four short years ago, the people of Venezuela were armed. Look at how the situation has devolved since then. People are starving. They are burning muggers alive. Doctors are doing surgeries in the blood of previous patients.

The argument could be made for the chicken or the egg, but regardless, I’d certainly feel a lot better in a chaotic place like that if I was armed to the teeth.

So many times, when interviewed after a disaster, people talk about being “shocked” at the behavior of others.  Their level of cognitive dissonance has lulled them into thinking that we’re safe and that we live in a civilized country.  They are unwilling to accept that civilization is only a glossy veneer, even when the evidence of that is right in front of them, aiming a gun at their faces, lighting their homes on fire, or raping their daughters.

They refuse to arm themselves and prepare for an uncivilized future.

Accept it now, and you’ll be a lot better off when the SHTF.

(Thank you to KY Mom for the awesome tip!)

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: Did You Know That Venezuela Banned Guns for Private Citizens Only 4 Years Ago?

About the author:

Daisy Luther lives on a small organic homestead in Northern California.  She is the author of The Organic Canner,  The Pantry Primer: A Prepper’s Guide to Whole Food on a Half-Price Budget, and The Prepper’s Water Survival Guide: Harvest, Treat, and Store Your Most Vital Resource. On her website, The Organic Prepper, Daisy uses her background in alternative journalism to provide a unique perspective on health and preparedness, and offers a path of rational anarchy against a system that will leave us broke, unhealthy, and enslaved if we comply.  Daisy’s articles are widely republished throughout alternative media. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest,  and Twitter,.