Many people watching Milwaukee burn on the news from the safety of their homes in the suburbs feel immune. It seems like this only happens in big cities, right? “These people are burning down their own neighborhoods, how ridiculous,” observers say. They feel safe in their belief that the issue is merely a war on cops, and it’s nothing that could happen to them.
While cities like Milwaukee and Baltimore have been hard hit, keep in mind that Ferguson, Missouri is a relatively small town with a population of just over 21,000 people at the last census.
Suburbia isn’t the safe haven many believe it to be. And guess who is covering up the threat? That’s right. The mainstream news. It certainly wouldn’t be politically correct if they were to air the fact that the sister of the armed man shot by police in Milwaukee actually directed her fellow rioters to head to the suburbs.
In fact, CNN did the complete opposite. They carefully edited a clip and flat out said Sherelle Smith was calling for peace. In my part of the world, they would call this kind of deception a lie, not a “mistake”.
Wow, that’s really nice, isn’t it? Despite her loss, she wants her community to band together to end violence. Good for her.
Not so fast. Here’s the REAL clip.
Did you catch that? Here ya go.
Burnin down sh*t ain’t going to help nothin! Y’all burnin’ down sh*t we need in our community. Take that sh*t to the suburbs. Burn that sh*t down! We need our sh*t! We need our weaves. I don’t wear it. But we need it. We need our food. We need our gas. Y’all wanna hurt somebody you take that sh*t further out!
The threat is real, and it will be coming to suburbia. If not now, soon.
If there was ever a disaster to prep for, this is it.
With the race war fires being fanned by the likes of billionaire George Soros, you can bet your bottom dollar this problem is not going away anytime soon. One study found “between 20 and 50 social media accounts in Baltimore that were also tied to the peak period of violence in Ferguson. While further analysis is being conducted on the data, it suggests the presence of “professional protesters” or anarchists taking advantage of Freddie Gray’s death to incite more violence.” That’s right. People get paid to make a bad situation even worse.
And the media will not warn you – it’s politically incorrect to state that a certain group may be headed to destroy the communities of another certain group. And if they do, you can be sure that the coverage will be slanted to say that Certain Group #1 was only defending itself against Certain Group #2 and that even though Certain Group #2 never shot anyone, they still deserve it. Reparations and all that jazz.
The guy who wrote this article lived through the LA Riots. In the article, he predicts an enormous body count because (as we’ve seen in Baltimore) the police keep getting ordered to stand down and let people riot. In the article, Mac Young wrote, “But what can be clearly stated — and needs to be understood — is cops, unlike civilians — have rules of engagement, limits and use of force restrictions. Civilians don’t. That’s the other way bodies start stacking up.”
Are you ready for this?
How exactly do you get prepared for a war zone in your own neighborhood?
The first and most important thing to remember is this: DURING CIVIL UNREST SITUATIONS, YOU ARE COMPLETELY ON YOUR OWN. Do you think the people rampaging through the suburbs because they’re angry will respect your home, your fence, or the locks on your doors?
You have to realize that at any point in time, you could find yourself on your own, without backup from 911.
The only person you can rely on to protect your family is yourself.
Take a long hard look at the threats you face during civil unrest, and develop one. 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.
Following is a plan for dealing with an episode of civil unrest, taken from an article I wrote during the Ferguson riots. This plan is also applicable for societal breakdowns that occur in the aftermath of a huge disaster.
In a perfect world, we’d all be home, watching the chaos erupt on TV from the safety of our living rooms. However, reality says that some of us will be at work, at school, or in the car when unrest occurs. You need to develop a “get-home” plan for all of the members of your family, based on the most likely places that they will be.
- Devise an efficient route for picking up the kids from school. Be sure that anyone who might be picking up the children already has permission to do so in the school office.
- Discuss the plan with older kids – there have been rumors that children could be moved by the schools to a secondary location in the event of a crisis. Some families have formulated plans for their older kids to leave the school grounds in such an instance and take a designated route home or to another meeting place.
- Keep a get-home bag in the trunk of your car in case you have to set out on foot. (Here’s what I keep in my vehicle.)
- Stash some supplies in the bottom of your child’s backpack – water, a snack, any tools that might be useful, and a map. Be sure your children understand the importance of OPSEC and don’t include items that will get them suspended or arrested because of the fear-culture in our schools.
- Find multiple routes home – map out alternative backroad ways to get home as well as directions if you must go home on foot.
- Find hiding places along the way. If you work or go to school a substantial distance from your home, figure out some places to lay low now, before a crisis situation. Sometimes staying out of sight is the best way to stay safe.
- Avoid groups of people. It seems that the mob mentality strikes when large groups of people get together. Often folks who would never ordinarily riot in the streets get swept up by the mass of people who are doing so.
Keep in mind that in many civil disorder situations the authorities are to be avoided every bit as diligently as the angry mobs of looters. Who can forget the scenes of innocent people being pepper sprayed by uniformed thugs in body armor just because they happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time? And seriously, when there are rioters everywhere, it would be difficult to use discretion in the heat of the moment – everyone not in a uniform would seem like the enemy.
Once you make your way home or to your bug-out location …. STAY THERE.
By staying home, you are minimizing your risk of being caught in the midst of an angry mob or of sitting in stalled traffic while looters run amok. In most scenarios, you will be far safer at home than you will be in any type of shelter or refuge situation. (Obviously if there is some type of chemical or natural threat in your immediate neighborhood, like a toxic leak, a flood, or a forest fire, the whole situation changes – you must use common sense before hunkering down.)
This is when your preparedness supplies will really pay off. If you are ready for minor medical emergencies and illnesses, a grid down scenario, and a no-comm situation, you will be able to stay safely at home with your family and ride out the crisis in moderate comfort.
Be sure you have a supply of the following:
- Water (just in case the municipal supply lines are damaged)
- Necessary prescription medications
- Dry milk (you won’t want to leave to pick up a gallon of milk for the kiddos, and you may be hunkering down for a few days.)
- Emergency food buckets and/or a well stocked pantry – you need at least a one-month supply of food for the entire family, including pets
- A tactical quality first aid kit
- Lighting in the event of a power outage
- Sanitation supplies (in the event that the municipal water system is unusable, this would include cleaning supplies and toilet supplies)
- Over-the-counter medications and/or herbal remedies to treat illnesses at home
- A diverse survival guide, a very thorough preparedness book, and a first aid manual (hard copies in case the internet and power grid are down)
Be prepared to defend your home
Out of all of the ways to be prepared for unrest, this is the most important one.
Sometimes despite our best intentions, the fight comes to us. Even though we stay home, something about our place draws the attention of an unsavory person or group.
Defense is two-fold. You want to stay under the radar and not draw attention to yourself. The extent to which you strive to do this should be based on the severity of the unrest in your area. Some of the following recommendations are not necessary during an everyday grid-down scenario, but could save your life in a more extreme civil unrest scenario or a situation that has gone long-term. It’s always better to be over-prepared than under-prepared.
Here are some tips to make your home less of a target:
- Keep all the doors and windows locked. Secure sliding doors with a metal bar. Consider installing decorative grid-work over a door with a large window so that it becomes difficult for someone to smash the glass and reach in to unlock the door. Install a door bar on your front and back doors.
- Keep the curtains closed. There’s no need for people walking past to be able to see what you have or to do reconnaissance on how many people are present. If the power is out, put dark plastic over the windows. (Heavy duty garbage bags work well.) If it’s safe to do so, go outside and check to see if any light escapes from the windows. If your home is the only one on the block that is well-lit, it is a beacon to others.
- Keep cooking smells to a minimum, especially if there is a food shortage. If everyone else in the neighborhood is hungry, the meat on your grill will draw people like moths to a flame.
- Don’t answer the door. Many home invasions start with an innocent-seeming knock at the door to gain access to your house.
- Keep pets indoors. Sometimes criminals use an animal in distress to get a homeowner to open the door for them. Sometimes people are just mean and hurt animals for “fun”. Either way, it’s safer for your furry friends to be inside with you.
Fire is of enormous concern in these types of scenarios. Fire is a cowardly attack that doesn’t require any interaction on the part of the arsonist. It flushes out the family inside, leaving you vulnerable to physical assaults.
Be ready for the potential of fire.
- Have fire extinguishers mounted throughout your home. You can buy them in 6 packs from Amazon
- Be sure to test them frequently and maintain them properly. (Allstate has a page about fire extinguisher maintenance.)
- Have fire escape ladders that can be attached to a windowsill in all upper story rooms. Drill with them so that your kids know how to use them if necessary.
- Have bug-out bags prepared that contain all of your important documents in them in case you have to grab and go.
If, despite your best efforts, your property draws the attention of people with ill intent, you must be ready to defend your family and your home.
For some, vandalizing and destroying property is the order of the day. Often, times of civil unrest give people of a certain mentality the excuse they need to seek vengeance against those who have “more” than they do. Tensions erupt between the “haves” and the “have-nots”. When this occurs, often destruction of property is the way these people choose to show their “power”.
While this starts out as purely a property crime, the situation can quickly turn violent. If someone is outside bashing the headlights of your vehicle, it isn’t a far stretch to think that they’ll bash on you if you confront them.
How to respond to this is a very individual decision, and depends to a great extent on your personal skill levels and confidence. For example, I’m a single mom with daughters. As much as I like my Jeep, it’s unlikely that I’d confront an angry mob destroying it, because that just wouldn’t be sensible. Things can be replaced, but you and your family members cannot. If you are a person who is unaccustomed to physical confrontations, you may be better off staying inside and calling your insurance company after the fact. No possession is worth your life or the lives of your family.
Alternatively, in some situations, the aggression won’t stop with the destruction of your property. You may have to defend your family. 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. Chances are, you won’t have to unholster your weapon yourself. But this is a plan based on pure luck, and survival favors the prepared. I do not base my preparations for my family on the hope for good luck.
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.
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.
- 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. Make sure to practice drawing your weapon on a regular basis. This is no time to fumble around, and when you’re scared, you will be reliant on muscle memory.
- 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. Here’s some advice from someone who knows a lot more about weapons than I do. If you can, find an instructor that does classes at a simulation range. It’s a lot different to use your weapon moving around with threats popping up at you than it is standing at a range and firing at a stationary target.
- 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. My 15 year old daughter shoots regularly and is getting to be quite accurate. I have little doubt that if she was backed into a corner, she could successfully hit the target to protect herself.
- 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.
This isn’t just make-believe, action movie stuff. I’ve had an incident at my own home down a long country road, and I have never been more thankful to be armed. Just the fact that I had a gun and was clearly willing to use it meant the difference between something unspeakable occurring and nothing happening at all.
Civilization is just a veneer.
The foundation of acceptable behavior that our society was built on is starting to crack. What lies beneath it is uglier than most people want to imagine.
Look at the videos of what’s going on in Milwaukee. Look at what happened during the Ferguson riots. The Baltimore riots. The Baton Rouge riots. Look at the behavior of the stampeding masses on any given Black Friday shopping extravaganza.
Then tell me how “civilized” our country is.
Chaos isn’t just for big cities anymore. It could be coming to a suburban location near you.
by Daisy Luther