Saturday, August 11, 2007

Survivalists and Preppers

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man. - Proverbs 6:6 – 11

When will you arise out of your sleep? Reminds me of a line from Blade Runner: “Wake up – time to die!”

I post this blog with the hopes of waking some up and energizing others. Hopefully all will be fully awake and prepared when the time comes.
What's the Difference?

I recently got in a discussion with a friend on “the difference between survivalists and preppers”. Preppers would be those who are “into preparedness”. The topic ranged far and wide and others joined in. In the end, it’s all semantics but some good ideas came out of the discussion.

Preppers make lists and gather supplies to deal with the problems life may throw at them. Those problems could be storms, earthquakes, or even terrorism. The main idea though, is that they will be prepared to last, to make it through the temporary (key word) unpleasantness until .gov comes to the rescue. Which of course they will.

Survivalists on the other hand, prepare to deal with the same types of problems but focus on those with more wide ranging consequences and they plan to come out on the other side intact – without .gov help – thank you very much. There is also the feeling that one cannot be a “passive survivalist”. Survivalists have firepower. Preppers may or may not.

Political Correctness

Now, media did a bang up job demonizing survivalists – whacko nut jobs who live on a compound in the hills, fully armed and ready to terrorize everyone who comes around. ( I liked the movies nonetheless) That’s because the media have a vested interest in preventing individualism and self-reliance. We can’t have them thinking for themselves and not dependent on us (the media are part of the big machine, after all) for their very existence!

Many savvy people picked up on this (or bought into this) and even though deep down they really are survivalists – they don’t want to admit it. They are politically correct. I have another term but I'll be nice... So they tell people they are “into preparedness” and when talking amongst themselves, they refer to themselves as “preppers”. Whatever.

In my experience, many survivalists (and I know a fair number) look down their noses at true preppers (soccer moms with water filters and first aid kits as opposed to survivalists who are too embarrassed to admit it) as being just a rung or two above sheeple. I think they are wrong here. Anything anyone does to prepare is a step in the right direction. Any step anyone takes will relieve the pressure that will be placed on communities and yes, .gov, to help out during and after an emergency.


Preppers are preparing to weather a temporary emergency. Good. Survivalists are preparing to weather situations approaching and including Armageddon. Good. Some preppers will become survivalists. I hope they do. Some survivalists are just glorified preppers with guns – they are all about “stuff”. Maybe they have 5 years worth of MREs or something. To me, a real survivalist will have stuff – but more importantly he or she will also have knowledge and experience. I guess that would make them "uber-survivalists".

Not only will they have food – they will know how to produce more. Not only will they have first aid kits – they will know how to tend to their own. Funny, to my mind, these folks are starting to look like rural Americans of only 50 or so years ago…

But then what?

But as my buddy Ed pointed out – survivalists really need plan for more than just making it through to the other side. What good is that? Ever hear anyone say, “when the bombs drop, I hope the first one drops on my head”? They may say that now, but you can bet when the bombs do start falling they won’t be standing out there looking up – they will be hiding in the clefts and rocks…

Raison d'etre

Self preservation is a strong impulse. I recently attended a course taught by Gabe Suarez (I highly recommend him by the way) and he had a cool saying: The only thing harder than preparing ahead of time is having to explain why you didn’t. Think about it.

But why do we want to survive? Why must we survive? Simply to live? Is that enough? No, that is not. We must have reason. We must come out on the other side with a plan and a purpose.

The one who dies with the most toys wins

What is the meaning of life? Why are we here in the first place? What importance can we possibly have that exists after we die and no longer use up oxygen on good ol’ planet Earth? Why bother?

The one who dies with the most toys – still dies.

We are here - YOU are here for one reason and one reason only – to please God. You have work to do in that regard. Work that you can no longer do once you are in the grave. You have work to do – but you cannot work hard enough to gain eternal life. And let’s face it – eternal life is where you really want to be.

The Good News

You cannot earn it but you can still get it. See, it is a gift. All you have to do is accept it. Once you accept it you win. In closing I’d like to direct you to two passages:

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. – John 14:6

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. – Romans 10:9

You see, I am a survivalist. And I’d like to see YOU on the other side.

If you have any comments I’d love to hear them.
If they really interest me, I may even post them.
You can reach me at

Prepared Americans for a Strong America


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