An interesting issue came up while a reader and I were discussing the CERT program. In my opinion it is a serious dilemma that all preppers face. Do we help others in times of disaster/need or isolate ourselves offering no help in order to prolong our survival? If you help your neighbors you are going to make strong allies that may eventually form into a solid group. On the other hand if you put yourself out there you risk injuring yourself (thus leaving your family more exposed or vulnerable) or using your hard earned preps on someone other than your loved ones.
I don’t know about you, but my attitude is that I spent my time and money prepping as opposed to spending it on other “suburban” purchases (Playstations and neon bar signs, I guess) and therefore I have earned the right to consume them myself. Not only that, but I didn’t prep enough for the whole neighborhood and I will definitely NOT be taken food out of the mouths of my kids for anyone. The second that disaster hits every piece of prep gear you have becomes priceless. Food will be uber-priceless once the supermarket distribution system is disrupted. The unfortunate side effect of refusing to help your neighbors is the creation of bad relationships based on your neighbors erroneous belief that you SHOULD help them and you are a jerk for not doing so. You may be able to avoid this by flying under the radar and not volunteering the fact that you are prepared and play it up as if you are hurting as much as everyone else. Just don’t rip a big Mountain House spaghetti burp in your neighbor’s face after claiming you haven’t eaten in a few days!
If you can help your neighbors in a safe way or with a minimal use of your useful preps then by all means do so. We are a society that relies on everyone to function properly and helping others helps foster a community spirit. I believe that if I can help my friends and neighbors without hurting my family then I will do so.
Whichever way you decide to go, you should make that decision in advance and be ready to act accordingly. You may wish to discuss your thoughts with your group or significant other so everyone is on the same page when the SHTF. Each situation is going to be treated differently so think ahead and you’ll be alright!
Side Note #1: Gold and silver is low right now, if you have been waiting for a dip to buy, this is probably a good time. I just picked some up.
Side Note # 2: I do want to thank the “anonymous” poster for calling attention to the difference between the CERT program as he saw it (training for helping FEMA) and how I planned to use it (training with your neighborhood using the CERT game plan). They are both different and I didn’t do a good enough job explaining the differences. If you train to assist FEMA the costs of the program are minimal but if you run the program privately to get your neighborhood involved, YOU will have to foot the bill. Anyway, thanks for clearing up the confusion.
Side Note #3: You can now go directly to the site via www.suburbanprepper.com without the mention of wordpress. Just FYI as the old address still works.