Tuesday, July 19, 2005

To Be Reasonably Ready for Contingencies is to Be Slightly Atypical

As in any other slice of America, there is a wide and diverse collection of individuals in this land who dare to prepare for the worst, just in case.

Though from one to the next, there are as many differences between the individuals who practice common-sense disaster readiness as there are similarities, there are at least a few common traits that are probably present in the majority.

Note that these are my own personal observations based on many years of personal and professional interaction ...
  • One, those of us who dare to prepare tend to take some pride in being atypical. That is, we relish our individuality and often refuse to take the most traveled path in whatever journey on which we find ourselves.
  • Similarly, we are stubbornly independent in whatever personal views we develop. Often, these views are gained offline from standard learning nodes such as schools, universities, popular media outlets, and even peer groups. Of course, those institutions remain integral to varying degrees.
  • Those who choose to plan for contingencies in their lives tend to be slightly more cerebral, though not necessarily more intelligent. I simply mean to say here that we often put more thought into the details of our outlook than the average citizen today.
  • We typically embrace a practical, hands-on approach to tasks and challenges, more unusual today but once universal.

Otherwise, Who Are We?

Western religions of all stripes are represented among us, as are people who are averse to spirituality. Political views are widely represented, though it appears, to use standard labels, that conservatives and independents are predominant. Wealth has little or no bearing on one's predisposition to readiness, as all income levels are involved--probably proportional to income segments in the broader population.

I have to admit, I have less of a feel for racial and ethnic breakdowns. I am myself of northern European descent and I find that within my circles, white Americans are a clear majority. But somehow, I feel that in any ethnic group, there are people who live in anticipation of potential misfortune and prepare accordingly. I certainly invite input on this.

1 comment:

Sammy55 said...

Hey JC!

Great blog!

In my opinion, the "preparedness" issue has less to do with ethnic background than it does with the society in which we live. People in societies like the United States, for the most part, live dependent on forces outside of their control. They can't control the delivery of gas, groceries, electricity, etc. Therefore, if they perceive that there MAY be any disruption in the service that they depend on for their daily living, they MAY feel the need to be prepared.

However, most people in third world countries don't have the great dependence on outside supplies. They mostly don't have electricity or don't depend on it as much. They mostly don't have grocery stores, but may go to open markets or trade with their neighbors. They mostly don't have their own transportation, although they may use public or hired transportation to get to where they want to go.

However, they don't NEED to depend on any of these! Most of them (in my perception) operate under the mentality of: if there's electricity, gas, or groceries, or if things are going great for them, that's fine! Have a party! Things are good at this time! However, if things are not going good - can't get transportation, there's no electricity, they don't have food from the store - well, they can live without it. They don't have as much of a need to "prepare" as they are not as dependent on these items from outside sources that they can't control. They can still get food from nature or from their relatives or friends. They usually don't have refrigerators or stoves that need electricity. They usually don't venture far from home and thus need gas.

So, I think the preparedness issue comes from this: the more you are dependent on outside sources for whatever you need to maintain your life, the more you should consider being prepared.

However, no matter where you live, if you think that weather, nuclear war, earthquakes, volcanos, etc., can interupt your ability to take care of yourself, then you should prepare...not only physically, but also spiritually. As far as I'm concerned, God should be at the top of everyone's "get prepared" list! Only God can save us from all things that are not within our control!