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Rebuttal: Doomsday Preppers are Social Selfish
This Friday morning I was sad to discover an article on emergency management.com in the “Disaster Academia” section entitled Doomsday Preppers are Socially Selfish. This is a shortsided view that ignores the reality of disasters
Both federal, state, and local emergency management agencies, as well as NGO’s (non-governmental organizations)
Ms. Valerie Lucus-McEwen goes on to say:
You might wonder why someone like me is so critical of people who are doing just that. It’s because they are being socially selfish – preparing themselves and the hell with everyone else.
This is false on many levels, but I will pick out a couple. First, if prepping is socially selfish, by logical extension so is buying car insurance. It is spending personal resources to protect against a potential future problem. Does Ms. Lucus-McEwen want me to pay for everyone’s car insurance if I am to have some for myself? Prepping, like insurance, is something everyone can get, and everyone makes a decision how much they want to invest. It is not saying ”to hell with everyone else”, its saying I am going to be socially RESPONSIBLE, and spend time and energy making changes that benefits the larger community by freeing governmental resources to go to those truly in need. No government, organization, or person can afford to be totally prepared for everything, we have seen the devastation caused by Presidential Disasters like Katrina, Gustav, and most recently Sandy. The government has good plans, and some great people, and a deep pocket to pay for response, but it is not the solution to every problem, nor can it be.
She then goes on to say:
Emergency Managers can’t afford that kind of attitude. It is diametrically opposed to everything we do.
I too am a professional emergency manager, my degree is in Emergency Management, and I have responded to several large disasters during my tenure in this field. My experience causes me to feel the exact opposite. I cannot afford to not assist preppers. Personal disaster preparedness is EXACTLY what we should strive to induce in the American populace. Personal responsibility and self-reliance has made this country great. Instead of looking down our noses at citizen preppers, and smugly judge their reasons, we should focus on what we have in common, and learn to work with them because we, as emergency managers have more in common with preppers than we have differences.