How To Prepare For Civil Unrest

Knowing what to do and how to prepare for civil unrest is a conversation we need to have…. even if you don’t want to. Texas Power Blackouts, unclean water, wild election seasons, and freezing temps. NOW is the time to prepare, not waiting until the next time disaster strikes.

Prepare For Civil Unrest Supplies

What is Civil Unrest?

According to Wikipedia: Civil disorder, also known as civil disturbance or civil unrest, is an activity arising from a mass act of civil disobedience (such as a demonstration, riot, or strike) in which the participants become hostile toward authority, and authorities incur difficulties in maintaining public safety and order, over the disorderly crowd. It is, in any form, prejudicial to public law and order.

Essentially, civil unrest is when the masses stop following rules, stop obeying laws, and take society into their own hands. While we are seeing that now in some cities like Portland, and it may look bad, this is really a small group of people compared to a true civil unrest scenario that you would need to be concerned about….so far. More to follow on that below.

History of Civil Unrest in America

Going as far back as our inception as a country, the United States has seen its share of times when it was not united. From the Pennsylvania Mutiny of 1788, to the 2020 George Floyd Riots. in fact, there are literally hundreds of examples where we have seen this type of civil unrest before.

In recent years, starting in 2014, we saw the newest form of civil unrest come in the form of protesting controversial officer-involved shootings. Social media platforms like Twitter spread stories quicker than anyone can control them. A snippet of a video can end up causing a major civil unrest scenario in a moment’s notice without any context or clarifications to actual details of the incident.

Often, the major media networks fuel these video snippets and end up having to retract or clarify weeks down the road as the details come out. Unfortunately at this point, the damage is done and people are in the streets filled with rage and creating a mob mentality that spreads quicker than can be controlled.

This Will Pass, Right?

Yes, well, maybe. You see, we are a nation divided, more so than I have ever seen in my life. People are drawing lines in the sand along political parties and no one seems to be budging. As this continues, we keep seeing small violent uprisings in major metropolitan areas, with the frequency increasing.

There is a cultural shift in America. those who seek to maintain the free enterprise, the government of and for the people, capitalistic economy, and a nation rooted in the “Under God” principles we were founded on. An idea of a society where any man or woman, regardless of skin color or social status can work hard enough and succeed.

Above all this portion of Americans believe in the Constitution. The Constitution is a document that truly does represent and govern the American lifestyle we know today. It is the backbone of our country.

Conversely, we see a newer trend gaining steam in 2020. The rise of socialistic and Marxist ideations. A society where the government provides for the people rather than the people providing for themselves. Capitalism is considered to be a power structure that only serves the top 1% leaving behind the rest of society.

Within these ideals is the thought that our current powers of government need to be ripped down and America has a new start that serves all. A guaranteed basic income, free healthcare, free college, and a redistribution of wealth from the top down. This portion of society believes the Constitution is born in racism, is too outdated to work in modern society, and should be done away with.

In addition, racial divides have fueled the fans of these fires. Often, the wealthy and powerful use these dividers to further political agendas and keep that masses fighting rather than truly watching what is happening at the top, on both sides. Round and round we go….

Police and Government Intervention and Civil Unrest

Like you, I told myself to not worry, the police and government will handle these issues. While the men and women of law enforcement are certainly ready to shut down these riots, we have seen a new wave of radical city and state officials remove the tools from the officers to conduct their duties, leaving both the police and the communities they protect helplessly.

While the federal government does have a plan on the FEMA website, as we have seen, these plans do not always work out as expected (see Hurricane Katrina). So what happens then? Well, we as a society are responsible for ourselves.

In addition, when the protests and riots started in Atlanta this past May, the Atlanta Police Department had an entire shift call out sick and not report to work. That night, that patrol zone had no police response to serve 911 calls, read about it here. What we take for granted in America may not be there when we need it most.

I was a Military Policeman and deployed to Iraq as a part of the 2007 troop surge to quell violence as it had reached a boiling point. Once in Iraq, I was patrolling outside the wire with my Iraqi Police counterparts 6 days a week for 15 months straight.

I learned what an insurgent looks like. I learned first-hand what society looks like when the government has collapsed or is no longer able to protect its people. Because of this, I learned its good to prepare.

Civil Unrest Preparedness – Have A Plan

I’m not here to tell you that you must prepare, do as you please, really. However, I cannot in good faith, not have prepared knowing that I have a family that relies upon me and their safety. If a scenario did kick off beyond what we see today and the cops cant show up, you are your own first response. When that happens, I can’t imaging having to tell my family we have nothing to get by or protect ourselves with.

The first action to take is to prepare your mind. Understanding there is a potential for a true civil unrest scenario and being mentally prepared for it is half the battle. Those who spend their lives with their head in the sand will panic and fail when things get tough.

Those who prepare both mentally and will supply will be in a much better situation. The great COVID-19 toilet paper shortage should have told you just how quick basic supplies disappear when society has a shift in normalcy. In the event of a true nationwide civil unrest scenario, not only will toilet paper be gone but so will food supplies, medicine and definitely weapons and ammo.

I’m not suggesting you go max out your credit card to buy an underground bunker filled with 2 years of supplies. I am however suggesting you start small and every month grab some extra supplies while at the store. Going to Target for some new bedsheets? Great! Grab an extra bottle of ibuprofen and some non-perishable foods.

Stopping by the sporting goods store? Sweet! stop by the ammo section and toss 2 boxes in your cart. When this is done in small steps, you can very easily start to prepare and not hurt your wallet in the process.

Some Very Basic Items to Have For Emergency Preparedness:

  • Medical (bandages, tourniquets, OTC and prescription supplies):
  • Food (long shelf life and non-perishable food ):
    • I don’t think this can be stressed enough (think COVID-19 Grocery Store madness). Having long-term storage food will be like gold if society has any sort of extended breakdown.
    • Two Brands that are definitely worth your time to check out for food options are Nutrient Survival, ReadyWise and Valley Food Storage.
  • Power: Getting a Generator either gas or solar will save you and your loved ones a lot of headaches. I’ve tested Jackery vs Goal Zero and the Jackery comes out on top by a large margin, every time.
  • Essentials: Toilet paper, toothpaste, other hygiene products.
  • Maps: Paper maps are gold, cellular data can never be relied upon.
  • Security: Home surveillance (as Simple as a Ring Video Doorbell)
  • Protection: Firearm or other Non-lethal control measures that will stop a violent attack.
    • For some excellent home firearm safes and protection options, check out Lockdown. They feature some really cool “stealth” safe options where you can make ordinary items like a shelf on the wall, a quick access gun safe. These are incredibly affordable too. Lockdown is another excellent option in home security I can’t recommend enough. Check them out here.

Again, this is a basic starting point but it plants the seed and keeps your mindset in a good spot. I understand many people are not comfortable with owning a firearm and certainly not comfortable with the thought of shooting someone. As stated above, in that situation, there are several non-lethal options that will stop a threat. Don’t think so? Check out some injuries from non-lethal rounds from the 2020 George Floyd riots.

Aside from supplies, you need a plan. A plan comes along with the mindset. Knowing what you will do, where you can go, and who you can network with is a huge component. If you live in a metropolitan area and a true civil unrest scenario kicks off, you will likely need to leave town depending on the severity.

As you have seen all over the news, one of the first places that shut down is interstate or another major roadway. If the scenario was on a massive scale, the highway is the last place to be as it will be packed with others leaving town and facing off with the rioters. Highways will become a dangerous choke point of travel. Know in advance the alternate routes and methods to get out of town. Network with family and friends who live in areas where it is not as populated, where you and your family can spend time while this passes by.

Civil Unrest and the Outlook Moving Forward

So, what’s to come of all this? Will we be back to normal life and worrying about celebrities and gossip again? I mean, I said it myself, this has happened hundreds of times in our countries past….Or will the election night of 2020 be a catalyst event that sparks massive civil unrest worse than we have ever seen before?

No one knows, no one has a crystal ball and because of that, everyone should be prepared. Prepare your mind, prepare your home, and be able to care for yourself, you owe it to your family.

Mike is a Colorado resident, an Army veteran, and a former Police Officer, and an avid outdoorsman. Mike has camped, hiked, and overlanded all over the United States. From backpack Elk Hunts on Public Land, solo truck camping to Multi-week Overlanding adventures with his family, Mike is very familiar with these outdoor topics.

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