Many Preppers I talk to have no idea that FEMA has very extensive disaster preparedness information and plans on their Ready.Gov site.
The fact that they have all this information and that they strongly recommend everyone “be prepared” flies strongly in the face of the DHS declaration that essentially says Preppers are potential threats. So how can FEMA be telling us to get Prepped while DHS is calling Preppers potential terrorists? Going carefully through DHS’s definition document, we find the difference. DHS is saying “a belief in the need to be prepared for an attack either by participating in paramilitary preparations and training or survivalism.” while FEMA is 100% about being prepared for a disaster.
To summarize this, FEMA/DHS appear to be good with Preppers when everything can be framed as preparing for a disaster. Where they diverge is when you are “preparing for an attack”. Apparently, only DHS is allowed to do that.
Here at The APN, we have our own beliefs and definitions of Preparedness:
Our Core Belief
We firmly believe that every American family should strive to become Self-Reliant, enabling them to better weather the day-to-day disasters, catastrophes and hardships that we all experience.
Our Secondary Beliefs
We believe in Public Virtue and that communities should draw together through Preparedness and develop friendships, trust and loyalty within their neighborhood through discussing and developing support, evacuation and safety measures.
We believe that every family should have a personal storage of every needful thing in the event of a local disaster to enable them to help themselves, help their neighbors and help their community.
We believe in the “goodness of man” and that our responsibilities lay first to ourselves, second to our families and then to our neighbors and communities.
We believe that with proper preparation, disasters can be overcome on a personal, family, neighborhood and community level.
“To bring knowledge and understanding of living a Self-Reliant lifestyle into the mainstream and teach it to every household in America.”
So how does The APN square up with the Federal Government based on their definitions and ours? They draw their line at “paramilitary preparations” and being “prepared for an attack” – have we crossed it?
Being Self Reliant absolutely includes the training, ability and preparation for defending yourself. As well, we are very strong supporters of the Second Amendment and the Constitution itself. We do not actively promote joining a Militia but we do not denounce it and we think it’s a good idea – if it is the right kind of militia. We absolutely support survivalism!
Based on the government and our definitions; We are potentially considered a fringe group by The DHS but hopefully not by FEMA.
The APN fully supports and is excited that FEMA, or any other group, is promoting and encouraging people to get prepared. In support of their efforts, we have determined to fully embrace and participate in National Preparedness Month.
FEMA Style Prepping
FEMA teaches an extremely basic level of preparedness – food and water for 3 days is the maximum they recommend because by then, they should be there helping you.
Unless they’re not.
FEMA promotes a very simple and structured approach to preparedness:
Be Informed. Make A Plan. Build A Kit. Get Involved.
They provide solid information on the basics of Disaster Preparedness with specific Preps for every type of disaster. These include what to do Before a specific Disaster and separate information on what to do During a specific Disaster. They also include what to do afterwards for certain Disasters.
APN and National Preparedness Month
FEMA’s information is solid, it’s great – it’s also simple and short-sighted. In seeking a simple and structured solution, they have completely overlooked teaching self-reliance. In fact, their model expects you to NOT be self-reliant. They want you to prepare to live until they get to you. We want you to prepare so that when/if they get to you, you say no-thanks and send them away. Preppers do not belong in shelters. We belong in our homes if we’re bugging in or in our BOL(Bug Out Location) if we’re bugging out/evacuating. We do not rely on nor do we need FEMA or anyone else to come rescue us and take care of us.
To participate in National Preparedness Month (NPM) The American Preppers Network is going to take the baseline that FEMA has developed for Government Disaster Preparedness and turn it all into Prepper Disaster Preparedness! We’re going to add to everything they’ve done and turn it all into something useful for Preppers. Our goal is to publish at least one Prepper Disaster Preparedness Plan each day.
We know that these will be overly basic for a lot of you, but we have a LOT of new Preppers who are begging for basic info including what to do and how to get started. At the end of the month we’ll take all these articles and put them into a pdf that will be a free download for everybody. It should make quite a Getting Started doc!
As we publish these, we ask your assistance in reviewing them – if you see anything we left out or overlooked, please let us know in the comments and we’ll update the documents.
Hopefully, in creating this solidarity with FEMA, both our groups will be able to further accomplish our goals and bring the message of Preparedness and Self-Reliance to many more homes and families!