photo by Sheri Dixon

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Of Guns and Granola

One thing I know about Survivalists...they HATE Damn Hippies and Liberals- none of which have EVER had a good idea, EVER. They believe the world is going to hell in a handbasket, and they are busy little bees FIERCE ANGRY WARRIORS making preparations for it.

To look at Survivalist websites and blogs, you can clearly see that they are the authors and inventors of all sorts of innovations that will come in very handy once TSHTF (the shit hits the fan) and/or TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it).

Stocking up on food. That's really important. You can buy all sorts of pre-packaged MRE's (meals ready to eat) that are hermetically sealed and dated to infinity. OR, if you're really into it, you can buy SURVIVAL SEEDS- ziplocked and shrink-wrapped gardens ready to plant (sorry- no substitutions- if you don't like beets or brussel sprouts, or your climate doesn't GROW beets or brussel sprouts, get over it PansyAss).
There are dehydrators and canners and all sorts of ways to preserve your bounty in order to fill up your underground bunker with enough food for from here to eternity.

Funny. The back-to-the-landers have always advocated food independence and sustainability through keeping a well-stocked pantry (not MRE's- things like flour and beans and sugar and rice and spices- COOKING ingredients) and a garden- both for peace of mind and the health benefits inherent in cooking from scratch. Heritage seed banks have been around for years, preserving old time varieties and making sure they get into the proper dirt as far as climate and rainfall to further preserve them so the next generation can also save them and use them and pass them on.

Being able to run shit. If all your food isn't preserved, and you depend on freezers for food storage, being able to run shit is very important. Also things like electricity and water pumps and whatnot. There are a gabazillion generators to buy- everything from little ones to run power tools where there's not a socket to behemoths that will run the average 3,000 square foot, air conditioned, well-lit fortress once the Lights Go Out.

Weird. We're just a coupla old hippies, and even though we don't have any of the alternative energy sources like solar or wind or hydro, our house was built with redundant systems- we have both propane and wood heaters, enough lanterns to light well enough if the electric goes out, propane stove AND a wood cook stove and sawdust toilets/a Berkey water filter in case we can't use the well pump (our next big purchase- a hand pump to drop into the well casing...that we had them make big enough to do that when they dug the well). We're planning on getting some small alternative energy set up for running the freezers, but haven't decided yet what it will be- we dislike the idea of a battery bank.
And the house was built to take advantage of window placement and number and with big porches and high ceilings- no central a/c here, so no worries if it goes out.

Building Community. This is extremely important- mankind is a social species and we need communities for protection and general well-being. Even the survivalists are aware that those single-family (or single-person) enclaves up in the mountains or deep in the swamps are not really healthy, and even kinda disturbing. There are all sorts of Intentional Communities springing up- finding one whose members share your spiritual, political or societal beliefs is pretty easy- the infighting involved once inside can be brutal, but that's always the way no matter the group or ideology.

Most ALL of these survivalist groups LOVE their guns. Guns are more than tools to them, they are the very symbol of the American Way. They are currency, security, prestige, power. They even named their intentional communities after them-

"I belong to a *****MAG*****. (Mutual Assistance Group) We live together and help each other- everyone has strengths and weaknesses and being in a group we can better protect each other".

Very manly. Very dominant. But where have I heard of that sort of set-up before???

Oh yeah.

You're talking about a COMMUNE (smiley face inside a rainbow peace sign).

I'm really not disparaging the whole survivalist thing.

I do question the seemingly pervasive attitude of "keeping MY people safe in hard times and SCREW THE REST OF 'EM/Shoot first and let god sort 'em out". Quite the little (WARRIOR SURVIVOR) ants they are, aren't they?

Here's the thing.

What if a whole bunch of perceived grasshoppers are really sitting around playing music and sharing food because all their shit's already taken care of and they already know how to live- really live in ways that are sustainable and renewable and that don't fuck over the environment or other people to get there? That don't require huge expenditures and furtive hoarding but that rely on openness and sharing and education instead of secretive glaring at everyone who's not in their little clique.

Here's what I'M afraid of. Mortally and literally.

It ain't the starving zombie hordes that will stream out of the cities after a terrorist attack leaves the entire world in a crazed lawless shambles.

It ain't an EMP knocking out all power and communication causing mass panic and mayhem.

It's our country being slowly but surely turned into a theocracy where MY family could and would be tagged, detained and persecuted because we don't have a Church Home.

It's what would happen if the country DOES fall into bad worse times and those Survivalist MAG's run out of canned goods and sneak out of their compounds under cover of night to use their guns to take what they need for THEIR people...from MY people.

Somewhere between Survivalist armed to the teeth "There's more to the Constitution than the 2nd Amendment???" and mall crawler consumer "I don't DO politics- it's boring" is where we all need to be.

Somewhere outside of isolation, inside of real community where people are cared for because they're the same species as we are- not the same religion or race or economic level or have attained some bullshit plateau where they "earn the right" to basic human care.

Welcome to the party, Survivalists- now settle the hell down and have some homemade granola.

We've got this. We've had it for oh...about 50 years. Where the hell have YOU been?

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