Do You Need a Gun to Garden?

Well guns aren’t really that useful for digging or anything like that. But do you need a gun if you are becoming self-reliant? Let me tell you a true story that happened to me an made me decide to go buy several guns.

Back when we were first produced the DVD “Grow Your Own Groceries” I went around to different local stores to see if they would sell it.

I was at a shop talking with the owner about carrying the DVD in his store. He was congenial enough, but looked me right in the eye and told me “I will never need to grow food”. I told him that you never knew what was coming and being able to grow food could be a crucial skill. He folded his arms across his chest and flatly told me he would never have to grow food.

I wondered, did he have a big cache of backup food supplies? Was he already really good at growing food?

But no, he didn’t have stored food nor a garden or livestock.

I asked him why he would never need to be able to produce his own food? Did he not believe anything bad could happen. “Oh, I totally get we could have a collapse at any time” he said. “Yes, an epidemic, or terrorist attack, these could cause really big problems for us” he said.

I couldn’t help but wonder why he wouldn’t want to be more prepared with skills that would be essential in times of trouble.

Puzzled, I asked him again “but if you recognize possible problems coming, why don’t you think you would ever need to grow food?”.

He looked me for a long moment as if I was sort of stupid and said “because I have this”, and from under the counter he pulled out a big black semi-automatic gun.

He carefully laid it on the counter between us pointed in a direction away from anyone.

He wasn’t threatening me, just showing.

I stared at the gun not understanding, and I asked him “What do you mean?”

“Well, if anything happens” he said as if speaking to a child, “it is like this; with this gun I can get all the food I need from people like you who”.

Several customers had been drawn into listening to our conversation agreed with the shop owner.  apparently they too owned guns and figured that if law and order completely broke down, well, they could go about and take whatever they needed.

They were ordinary looking people and I would have never guessed they would have this kind of thinking.

I was speechless. And I didn’t sell any videos.

Now I live in Texas, which has a proud tradition of gun ownership. Buying, selling, and swapping guns is easy and legal – in fact, it is a major pastime for many Texans. And while Texas may be on the more extreme end of the spectrum, that kind of mentality exists in some form everywhere.

Within the history of recent periods it is well documented that crime and violence go up as economic conditions go down. And there certainly are scenarios where law and order break down. Having some level of defense is an important skill.

I used to be the kind of woman who couldn’t even look at the glass case where the guns were in the sports shop. I would avoid my eyes while on the way to the sleeping bags or camping section.

But after the experience with the shop keeper, I realized I needed to learn a whole new set of skills and get over my fears about guns.  And I begna to put a bit more emphasis on understanding defense.

In an upcoming article I’ll write about what guns I’ve ended up choosing to use and why.  And I’ll do a short series on resources that I’ve found particularly useful for understanding principles of defense.

As shocking as the experience with the shopkeeper was, I see it as a good thing.  It opened my eyes to a reality I hadn’t been willing to look at.  While this site is mostly dedicated to food and medicine, I will be bringing forward  what I’ve been learning about personal and home defense.

What a shocker….  huh?




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This post was written by Marjory


  • Sidney Patin says:

    What a jerk! I think people who live in urban areas should also be on guard and prepared against idiots like that who think they will come in and take our food and supplies by force. This would be a good subject for you to use in your blogs – defense of your survival goods. Thanks for your information and your blog. (I bought the DVD set some time ago and enjoyed watching it and the additional CD with all the links.)

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Sidney,

      Yeah, it was an eye opener for me too. And I started adding self-defense into my world view.

      I used to be one of those women who couldn’t even look at the guns behind the glass at the sporting goods stores. But once I realized what I could be facing… well I decided to get educated.

      FYI, I am working on finding resources for how to best defend your home or farm from a tactical perspective. Like what are the most likely threats, what sort of routines should my family have in place for security, and realistically what sort of weapons are useful? I am working to organize a workshop that will be presented here at my farm. Probably in the fall. Details coming soo – but you are the first to know…

      1. gena says:

        Yeah, I came across a similar response. One of my neighbors, who really has very little knowledge of what all I have stored up, got angry at me and told all my neighbors I was “wasting my money stockpiling for the end of the world.” I was talking about her telling everyone with another neighbor, and so I asked him if he was trying to build up any supply of food should there be even a short term emergency situation. He told me he could not be bothered, but now that he knew that I had at least some stockpiled food, should an emergency arise, he would get get a couple of his buddies and come and take whatever I had. AND he was quite obviously NOT kidding. I’m looking around for a good weapon an older woman can use who has had a lot of back surgery and is not very strong with the arms due to nerve damage. And even though he was a neighbor and I know him personally, should he show up in an emergency situation, I would blow him away. And am sure he would not hesitate to try to do the same to me. He has since been evicted out of the area but I have found he is living close by, and I know he is dangerous.

        1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

          That is a very difficult situation… To have to prepare yourself for that kind of violence. To live in a neighborhood with a person like that near by. It is one of the reasons so many people don’t talk about their ‘preps’. Uh, “OPSEC” is the military term for Operation Security – I think. It means not talking about anything that would put you in this kind of situation. So that is a good lesson for other people, but won’t help you right now.

          Why did the neighbor who told everyone get so angry with you?

          Is it possible for you to move to another location?

          I just did an interview with Fernando Aguirre – he lived through the Argentinian collapse. The degree of day to day violence that he spoke of as the Argenitna economy collapsed is horific, so the realist in me says yes, you should get a weapon. And you sound feisty enough to actually use it if necessary.

          My mom was feisty like that in her senior years, and you really didn’t want to ever cross that woman.

          I’ll talk about my suggestions for a weapon in a future post.

          But I also know that community is so important to everyone’s survival. Especially if you are elderly and alone. And I wonder if you could bring up the level of general preparedness in your community without coming across as a prepper. Start a neighborhood gardening club for example. Show a permaculture movie at the local elementary school cafeteria, community center, or your own living room if you are comfortable with that. Check out the podcast I did with Jack Spirko on “How To Find Like Minded Neighbors and Build Self Reliant Community Without Sacrificing Security” in the podcasts tab and listen to all the suggestions and tips for building strong community.

          Whew, I am going to continue to ponder this.

          Anyone else with comments for Gena?


          1. Christopher R. says:

            I feel bad for this lady, having someone in her neighborhood like that, basically telling her that he’s coming for her things in a crisis scenario. I have many years of training and experience with firearms and have had many people ask me “Should I get a gun for home defense?” My response is, “Could you kill someone if they came into your home?” If the person says “Well, I don’t know…” then I tell them they should consider the possibility of taking someone’s life before they purchase a firearm for defense. In a home defense situation, it takes only a moment for an intruder to move across a room and be on you. A second (or less) of hesitation in a self defense scenario could mean the difference between life and death. I have often advised people to improve their home security (window bars, alarms, a heavier door on their bedroom, etc.), plant thorny bushes beneath windows, or buy a dog to protect their home before buying a firearm. If none of those options are realistic and they decide to buy a firearm, I ask them a few more questions, such as how mechanically inclined they are or if they plan to use the firearm for something besides home defense. If they’re not mechanically inclined, I often advise a revolver over a semi-automatic pistol for ease of dis-assembly, cleaning and reassembly. If they plan to one day use the firearm for hunting, I will advise a shotgun or rifle. Another thing to consider is that in a middle-of-the-night intruder situation, it will be dark and being awoken from sleep may mean you’re not as alert as you might be during the day. Fine motor skills are the first to disappear in an adrenaline-fueled self defense situation. In instances like that, a shotgun is (in my opinion) the best weapon for self defense. A 2-3/4″ shotshell of 00 buckshot contains 9 pellets the size of a .38-caliber bullet. With 9 pellets coming from the muzzle of a shotgun, you don’t have to be as accurate with a shotgun as you do with a pistol or rifle. There are also many ammunition companies making specialized personal defense rounds for shotguns that have a faster pattern spread (increased likelihood of hitting your target) and lower recoil for faster follow-up shots. There is no easy answer and using a firearm for self defense is a tough subject to wrap your head around. There is a tremendous amount of responsibility that comes with owning a firearm. The responsibility to keep it safe, to keep yourself and others safe, to understand how the weapon operates, how to maintain and store the weapon, and most of all, the responsibility to train, train, TRAIN with it. Inquire about training at a local gun shop, many offer first time and ladies-only classes. Local gun clubs are another option, or even a good friend with a piece of land big enough to practice on. I am always amazed at how many people buy a firearm and a box of ammunition, load the gun and store it in their nightstand without ever becoming intimately acquainted with it so that it feels like a natural extension of their hand. Best of luck to Gena.

          2. Kat says:

            I think I just found a solution to our woes. There is an entire town for sale up in South Dakota. Who’s in? Hope everyone is having a Blessed Day!

          3. SUE says:

            I think there are a lot of “Gena’s” out there. I am in my sixties, a stroke survivor and two heart attacks. I have no major disabilities, but have partial blindness and severe vertigo, not a good candidate for a weapon. I live alone and like it that way. Did start my first garden this year with mixed results and appreciate you for sharing your wisdom.
            Don’t forget the Genes.

        2. clementine says:

          I had a single friend and also co-worker who lived at a small intersection on the very edge of the main drug community. She was concerned of being raped mostly and came up with the idea of hanging on her clothes line a size 42×36 pair of mans jeans, 3x large shirts and just for laughs some very large underwear all purcheased at the local thrift shop along with placing a pair of size 13 shoes at both her front and back doors. Also, I suggest a small vocal dog (chihuahuas are the best) to alert you to the smallest of noises. No need for a big dog because they eat alot and you just want the alarm to warn you. I get angry at all the false alarms my wee guys sound off at, but sometimes I am glad forit because they werewarnings of the real deal. Plus, they make good companions. Hope this helps some.

          1. Fred says:

            I agree with getting a chihuahua but I understand that the smaller a dog is, the longer his natural life span is. My sister’s chihuahua is over 21 and almost blind but still makes a lot of noise. At my age, 68, I would hate to go before any of my pets. If you live in an area that has sufficient water, maybe a big bird (geese), might be better for some people as they do not live as long and they are edible for making too much noise.

          2. DaveM says:

            A friend who has worked most of her adult life as a storyteller started going on the road more often and farther from home than had been the usual. Her significant other was worried about her traveling alone, and was unable to accompany her. He decided that the best he could do was to “fix up” her truck. He put bumper stickers on it from the National Rifle Association, The United States Marine Corps, and one of the harsher brands of chewing tobacco. He figured no one was going to bother an armed Marine who was fond of Red Man Plug. And I guess he was right, because no one ever did.

          3. Hi Dave,

            Oh I love that idea – the NRA bumper sticker… Kind of like putting out those security and alarm signs in front of your home.

            Years ago when in real estate, we used to put up signs that stated the haouse (clearly vacant) was under video surveillance – it cut down tremendously on the break ins.

          4. Steve says:

            While all these are good ideas, the dog (or a new one) should be TRAINNED to only bark when someone approaches the front or enters the back of the property. If the dog barks all the time it is useless. Also, you still need a firearm if the jeans, shoes and dog don’t deter them.

        3. elizabeth says:

          My personal opinion is that we need to live in intentional community, such as tribes or committend groups. Everyone armed with a gun shooting everyone else seems to be a recipe for disaster, with few survivors. However, there is strength in numbers, both in terms of defense and in terms of ideas. Intentional communities have been around for a long time, and they come in flavors enough so everyone should be able to find one of choice (or start one’s own). These communities have understandably been more or less quiet, but I do believe they are the seeds of how we will be living in the future.

          A brief reference to this may be found in the DVD “Earth 2100”. Travel has become dangerous due to shortages of water and food; the only way to travel safely is to caravan with others.

          1. Marjory Wildcraft says:


            Yes, community – tribe – groups. That is what it will end up as. It won’t be the survival of the fittest, but survival of the most cooperative.

            I’ll put that Earth 2100 on my list of movies to watch. And most of the distopian genre brings home that point about the importance of groups.

            Humans are a social animal.

        4. Jim says:

          get a walther p22 handgun. holds 10 rounds, no recoil, quick recovery time. have a high lumen flashlight near your bed and pistol. its your home, you have the benefit of the layout of the house.

          put up motion sensor lights at doors. likely if he is coward enough to steal from an older woman, he will hit you at night. this will give you some warning.

          get a dog, they will also give you advance warning. plus attack if provoked. i have a pitbull. despite the lies about them, they are very loving and faithful animals.

          for every mouth that shows up at your door, that cuts your food by fractions, and months. its about survival. don’t be afraid to pull the trigger IN YOUR HOME TO PROTECT YOUR LIFE.

        5. Carroll the Irishman says:

          Stay away from this guy and do get yourself a hand gun, get someone you know and truly trust and get them to teach you how to safely handle and fire the weapon. You don’t need neighbors who belittle and intimidate you. Be careful who you ask if they are prepared. Feel them out first before you disclose what you’re doing. I’m a combat Vet so, I’m a little more open plus most people who know me would say I’m a gentle man but, they’d advise others not to overstep into my realm. I wish you well.

        6. Kat says:

          My heart goes out to you. But sadly, your neighbor only said out loud what many other are quietly thinking. We live in Arkansas and if you want to learn firearm safety, I will gladly teach you. As peaceful people, when the worst does happen-We ALL need to be prepared for a variety of different scenarios such as people who we once considered friends, attempting to take what we have so carefully saved up for. We have made provisions as best we can for such things, but that will be when religion will play a major roll in our survival. When a catastrophic event does occur, it will be the human physic as well as the stomach that will be the end for many.

      2. wink tidwell says:

        Here is the solution to the elderly ailing woman whose neighbors are threats: Fix them some candy, jelly, jam, cookies or snacks they would not be able to refuse when they first try to sack your place; add something to them, like dried and powdered poisonous plants! One woman cannot stand againt a gang of thugs! They are going to rape and kill you anyway; this way you will have the last word as they die horrible deaths long after you are in paradise!!!

        1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

          Hi Wink,

          That is also a fairly wicked solution – kinda like the one idea using isotropy alcohol in an everclear bottle…

          In the natural world, poisons and trickery are the defense used by many plants and animals that are small, or otherwise defenseless.

        2. John R says:

          @ Wink. When Washington announced that they would confiscate your food if you had any “hoarded”, I posed this question on another blogger’s post. People thought that would be awful to poison someone. What if they fed it to their children? Kind of like the farmer that posted a sign in his watermelon patch “one of these melons is poisoned. I know which one.” He comes back the next day the there is a new sign. “2 of these melons are poisoned and I know one of them”.
          I have pondered this and even though I don’t drink alcohol, I have some stored, and yes, some has been doctored. I feel they wouldn’t give alcohol to their children and only “bad people” would rob you for alcohol.

      3. Maritha says:

        This guy wasn’t a Jerk, he was trying to wake you up to living in an dangerous country right now. We are in a Banana Republic and most people are still singing “Kumbaya.” Thank you Marjory for writing this important article. Peace, Love and Indigo Children are all fine and good, but sometimes you have to defend your right to live against roving, hungry, selfish people.

    2. Michael says:

      Well, undoubtedly there are persons out there sufficiently armed and willing to take food from those who are growing it and who they perceive to be easy weak targets. However, as a prepper, I hope they will think this through a little better before choosing such a course of action. Any prepper, myself included, who is serious about it will probably be quite well armed and not an easy target, though they might appear to be. You just have to practice with your preferred firearms, and always be prepared to defend yourself, your family and your property with possibly only seconds of warning, should the need arise.

    3. Fred says:

      Gun owners are realistic. They understand what happens when our system fails.

      Man is civilized only because he is fat and sedated with bread and circuses.
      When the power is off, there is no fresh water, and the shelves are bare, no one is going to be nice.

      Sure, growing your own garden is an important skillset, and in the long run, social relationships and alliances are far better than gunplay, but if you ignore the need for defense out of arrogance, self-righteousness, and pompous disdain for the 2nd amendment and those who understand its origins and purpose, then your make-nice skill set won’t mean much, when, at best, you’re subjugated to grow food for your new local post-apocalyptic overlords.

      Even Ghandi advocated violence.

  • Jeff Stewart says:

    You make a great and VERY valid point!! Unfortunately I’m guessing for every 1 such guy with the kahunas to openly admit to his “Master Game Plan for Disaster”, there are likely 10 to 20 more, who for reasons of either shame & cowardice, stealth, or both, will not openly admit to it but have the very same “game plan”, if they have ANY plan.

    If you think about it, it’s the same aspect of human nature that various religious scriptures of the world speak against in reference to loaning money to your brother at interest. It’s that all too common human trait called “laziness” or “sluggard”. i.e. those who go through life with a mindset that the easiest way to profits and great benefit in life is to simply devise clever ways to “profit” from the labor / efforts of others.

    On the grandest scale, this can look something like a totally private banking cartel calling itself The “Federal” Reserve, sucking up the vast wealth of an entire nation in only a few decades, through a fiat money / debt scheme that’s racked up a “national debt” in the multiple Trillions of $$, which of course is simply the interest we owe on all the money they’ve been so kind to “loan” to our government after printing it out of thin air with a few $1000 of paper and ink.

    The good people labor and toil long hard hours (if lucky enough to even be employed) and are as broke and struggling as ever, while the banksters sit around doing absolutely nothing in the way of real labor to harvest and process natural resources (which is where all real wealth comes from) and are sitting on mountains of money and partying like rock stars all over the world on private jets, yachts, estates with mansions etc.

    This mindset has been a scourge on society for 1000’s of years. Same exact mindset Jesus got so upset about as to make a “scourge of cords” (a WHIP) and physically DROVE them all from the temple and overturned their “money exchange” tables.

    YES…. He actually got physically very violent over this mindset!!

    SO BY ALL MEANS ARM AND TRAIN YOURSELVES, and do NOT hesitate to drop one of these rat bastards in their tracks if they swing open the front gate at your place while under the influence of this mindset / attitude, or they WILL do the very same to you in order to take what you have worked so long and hard to secure for your family.

    DO NOT EVER be fooled by the notion that “most people are good”!! All the most well studied experts will tell you that the “civility” we think so much of in our modern society is actually only a very thin veneer that is quickly peeled away in any severe crisis and people haven’t eaten for 3-5 days. Humans, even those “normally” showing strong morals and ethics, can quickly become FAR more savage and bass than many of us care to even think about. STUDY TRUE AND ACCURATE HISTORY!!

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:


      From the many interviews I’ve done (see some of them posted here – and I’ve got more coming), and the extensive reading on economic collapse or civil war disruptions. Yes, you really can’t predict how people will behave. Who knows how anyone will respond in situations of extreme desperation. As Americans we are saturated with visuals of murders and gunfights, and what is it? half of our population is on psychotropic drugs… anyway, there will most certainly be moments of intense kindness and generosity, but also and more likely will be the more horrible aspects. I was shocked when first openly exposed to the idea that someone would kill me for food. As a public speaker I have come across this attitude a surprising amount of times.

      Yikes. So yes, I do focus on defense. You see I’ve got a category for it. I’ve been learning to shoot and maintain weapons. I don’t make a big deal out of it, and I hope I never really need them, but I feel I would be foolish not to face up to that very possible and likely reality.

      1. Rambuff says:

        That mentality, the “I’ll just take up my guns and TAKE from those who HAVE prepared, is more pervasive and ubiquitous than anyone would like or can imagine. I ran a survival shop in Denver for several years and heard that same sentiment over, and over, and over. My reply was, and still is, the same as I gave to my own brother when he indicated that he also had “no need” to purchase and put away food and other preparations prior to an emergency/disaster. This from a man who owns a quarter of a million-dollar RV, a luxury vacation home on a lake and, coincidentally, a rather large and extensive gun collection (more for bragging rights than practicality – he has NO military training).
        My response to him was just as cold-blooded as his confessed future-crimes – that if he took to hunting and murdering the helpless and blameless to simply steal from them what he has full capability, knowledge of how-to, and foreknowledge to acquire for himself, that the next time I saw him, during a disaster, would be through the sight picture of my rifle scope just before I pulled the trigger. He was as shocked to hear me say that as I was to learn that my brother, and all those other ne’er-do-wells were willing; nay PLANNING to murder in order to maintain their corrupt lifestyles of “eat, drink, and be merry”.
        They all get a bit of another look in their eyes, however, when I inform them that if they do undertake their confessed “profession”, post-disaster, that I would be hunting THEM. Each of these morons thought themselves to be an “Alpha Male”; it is indeed a different thing when they run up against fully prepared, skilled, and determined opposition.

        One last comment from a “prepper” of 40 years and one with “repel all boarders” experience – a 12-guage pump-action shotgun is THE best, most effective and user friendly tool to acquire and use for basic home defense.
        Write me back if you wish to know more.

    2. wink tidwell says:

      Most people are NOT good! it used to be that 99% of my retail customers were good, God-fearing people, and 1% were jerks. Now Wal-Mart and other major companies have trained 99% of them to be thugs and only 1% remain God-fearing people! Did you know who pays for the damage (millions of dollars every day) done by customers at Wal-Mart? You and I do! Its added to what we buy. A fellow I know real well works at Wal-Mart, he says they have dozen of customers every day that push carts around the store pretending to put items in the cart that they are going to buy; all the time they are eating everything they want; when they get tired of eating, they just leave the cart where they want and head out the door!!!!!!????
      I have a retail nursery and have had to shut down for most of the week in order to get some relief from these jerks! I kept a log and found out most of the jerks don’t have jobs, so they are able to bother me from Monday thru Thursday every week; solution: only open on Friday and Saturday; you still get some few thugs, but most of them sleep late on Friday and Saturday!
      The good people who have jobs and are serious shoppers are coming in on Friday and Saturday; so now I am doing as much good buiness on two days as I once did in 6, and now I have much more time to myself and more time to do serious, uninterrupted work at my nursery while no jerks can bother me!

      1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

        Hi Wink,

        Wow, I sure can believe that people would go through Wal-Mart eating and then leave.

        What are the statistics? Some 46 million Americans on welfare. I am hearing commercials that talk about 1 out of every 7 Americans are struggling with hunger. The official unemployment stats are manipulated into meaninglessness. And from what I’ve read, some 56% of those who are employed are at minimum wage.

        Your post highlights just how desperate people are becoming.

      2. Maxi says:

        My son-in-law is a manager for Albertson’s. They had to stop the self check-out because too many people would pick up two packages of meat, scan the top one, and put both in the bag. And other such thievery.

        Many nations have been destroyed by their own immorality and so will be America.

        1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

          As things deteriorate, people begin to do things they would normally never do. The real shame is that meat is probably not worth eating in the first place.


    When good people become desperate (hunger, thirst, exposure etc) they become dangerous people. In this sense, good people do not exist under WROL conditions. This is how your thinking needs to change when the world changes or you will not survive.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      From the many interviews I’ve done with survivors of economic collapse, civil war, etc. the most common comment was how surprised they were by what people did – like you just can’t predict it. Some very generous.. Oh, check out this latest interview I’ve got going up with Fernando Aguirre – he said so many people who got robbed or mugged commented that the mugger was better dressed than thye were – the muggers in business suits with briefcases.

      I suppose that holding to your dignatiy and integrity is a part of the challenge.

  • Jim Johnson says:

    For around 100 years the Boy Scout Motto has been “Be Prepared.” Defense against any imminent threat to life, liberty or property requires certain skills just as our vocations or avocations. “Preparing” is a life long obligation. We prepare for adult life by learning how to educate ourselves (yeah, schooling), by acquiring marketable skills and acquiring social skills so that we may interact successfully, in our communities. We who took part in athletics constantly prepared for various competitions. Some folks did not compete directly but they prepared themselves to participitate in the arts and band.

    So acquiring the skills and materials to defend oneself should be just part of life.

    It is better to have the skills and never need to use them than to not have them when you need them.


    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Yes, I love you comment about ‘s better to have the skills and never need to use them than to not have them when you need them.”

      That is my hope.

    2. wink tidwell says:

      Boy Scouts? Now i recommend they form two separate groups:P
      CBSA, for Christian Boy Scouts of America, and
      QBSA, for Queer Boy Scouts of America!!!!!

      1. SWcooter says:

        Why two separate groups? My guess is that you are thinking it would make it easier for the evangelist xtian pedophile preachers to select which group of kids to penetrate…no pun intended.

  • Jim Quinton says:

    Not to be flip but if you think about it, the “Golden Rule” will apply when society breaks down. Quite simply, those that have the guns will make the rules. Guns and ammunition will become the new currency, as will alcohol, cigarettes, medical supplies,toilet paper and of course food. Guns will assist you in protecting what you have and who you love. They will allow you to hunt for your food if necessary. Owning a gun does not necessarily mean you have to use it. In some cases just displaying it can avoid confrontation. But if you display it be ready to use it because if you don’t, it will be taken away from you and used against you. For those of you who are not familiar with firearms, I strongly suggest you take a course and ask the instructor which is the best weapon for you, based on your skill level and comfort with firearms. Owning a gun is an awesome responsibility and one should not just go out and buy one without serious consideration. I liken it to having a light jacket on a fall day. You may never have to use it, but if you need it, it is nice to know it is there.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Jim, well yes, that is the attitude I take. Are there any particular classes / teachers you recommend?

      1. adw says:

        Frontsight in Las Vegas is the best civilian training you can get. I put the link in the website request box.

        PS; I am not affiliated with them in any way… just been a peace officer for over 30 years. Their training is very, very good.
        PPS; And yes, my professional and personal opinion is buy a hand gun and a shotgun (and ammo of course) and get trained, get proficient. These are good skills to have, and a God given right which our government is going to remove. Time is short.

        1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

          Hi ADW,

          Thanks for the comments on Frontsight. I’ve wanted to do some training – but there seems to be so many. Uh, and they are a bit expensive. Yeah, I know what you are going to say regarding cost… how much is your life worth?

          Do you have any advice on video trainings that are more cost effective? I liked the series called “Best Defense” hmm, I think Discovery Channel produced it.

          I do appreciate your comments on their training.

          1. adw says:

            Hi Marjory,
            Actually that is exactly what I say… Check out their website http://www.frontsight.com/Courses.asp They offer many class options (not just firearms), with many price structures. I’m sure you’ll find one that works. After that you will see how reasonable the training really is…and want more. You can also call them and ask about video training… but you will never become proficient until you actually do it, in person, hands on. And like I mentioned, This training is more important than any other. You have to be able to defend yourself before any other skill set becomes necessary. Food/WaterMedicalShelter/etc., all come second to protecting your life from people/animals that want to take it. If you can’t do that first… nothing else matters anyway.

          2. adw says:

            Remember, just about anything you see on the TV is not worth the time you spent watching it. So many so called experts, who have no idea what they are talking about…and worse giving bad advice which may get you dead. How much is your life worth?…indeed.

        2. John R says:

          I have been trying to put together my trip to Front Sight for some time now. I’m old and have been in the Army, but they didn’t teach me how to properly use a pistol. I am trying to get Front Sight to allow me to bring my 14 year old grandson. I am about there. I think it is important to teach our “youngsters” to use weapons. My 4 children were taught at a young age to use all types of weapons. Rifles, shotguns, revolvers, and simi-auto hand guns. They still reminisce about shooting in the back yard and learning you had to hold on tight to a 45 auto
          PS. My grandson shot his first deer at the age of 11. 2 deer at the age of 12 and one this season at the age of 13. I want him to go with me to Front Sight. Yes, I am proud of him.

          1. Randy W says:

            John, don’t give up on taking your grandson to Front Sight! I attended a class in May, and one set of participants was a father-son combination. The son was 12 !!!

            I thought he was a little young to take the class, but he performed well, and the time spent with his father there will never be forgotten!

            I will warn you–it (Front Sight training) becomes ‘addictive’, and you will want to return for more of it!

    2. Fred Z says:

      Just for clarification, could you please tell me what you think the “Golden Rule” is? I think that you may have meant to refer to the phrase “might makes right”.

  • Frank Oslik says:

    Just curious; what kind of store was it?

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      A gun store! LOL So there was ulterior motive.

  • Rey says:

    @Gena. Sorry, you are going to have to move. There is very little choice if you value your safety. When you move, please practice OPSEC and tell no one about your preps. You are not your brother’s or neighbors keeper.

    Get a couple of large dogs. German Shepherds and pit bulls are my favorites. Get them as puppies and treat them like your babies and they will die protecting you. The are faster, stronger and much more violent that you could ever be. For a few dollars a month of food and some love, they will reward you ten fold.

    Guns. That is a touchy one. Just owning a gun does not makes you a gun fighter. You must be able to shoot and hit your target when it counts. That means training and practice, practice, practice. Depending on where you live and the restrictions placed on you by the local Gestapo I would chose a hand gun, probably 9mm, that its comfortable in your hand and pocket book. The $500 or so price of the hand gun is just the initial cost. You will have to budget a couple of hundred a month for practice and a thousand or so once a year for training. Don’t get me wrong, I own, train with and carry a handgun daily. I believe that a handgun is the great equalizer. I am just looking at the reality of your personal situation.

    @marjory. The best in the country is Suarez international. Their training is dynamic, situation based with most of the training done as force on force with plastic bbs. They are expensive but worth every cent.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Rey,

      Thanks for the post – I think you are correct about big dogs protecting you.

      My farm dogs – the ones in the video set – are very, very attached to me. So much so that you know in a marriage when you get a little cross ways with your spouse (it happens), the dogs sense it and move in to protect me and keep an eye on my husband.

      And they normally love him.

      Thanks for the referral about Suarez international. I haven’t heard of them before. I really do want to do some of this kind of training to see if it really is worth it. You highly recommend it, and so have others who have written in.

      Thanks again for posting.

  • Christina says:

    Gena should get a german shepherd dog, that is trained to attack if she commands it to

  • Christina says:

    ps- you can get recordings on a CD on ebay of a ferocious sounding german shepherd dog barking, for security, if you cant get a real dog

  • Elizabeth says:

    Gena needs to relocate and this time not talk about her food storage. I believe there will be people that remain true and ethical, but bad, desperate situations can bring out the basest part of being human. Study any war histories and it’s obvious that this proves true.

  • Seth Waters says:

    Tell Gena She needs to look around for a fairly young man who’s proficient with weapons and wants to be a roommate. Rent out a spare bedroom or if you have an finished basement, let him make it into an apartment. She could offer him a rental discount in exchange for protection.

    If the SHTF, —and I mean if it all goes to hell, I’m going to hire two hired guns for the property. One for during the day and one for night. There is a small cabin on the property that would make nice living quarters. They could stay there for free as far as I’m concerned. I’m only interested in their ‘talents’. From the vantage point of the cabin, they’d have a good view of the gardens and chickens. Anyone comes to steal things or take by force, I want them to do what they are being paid to do.

    Believe me, I am well armed too. It’d be a mistake to mess with me or my family.


  • Leslie says:

    gena needs to move or find a family group that she can be part of to protect her when its hits the fan. My parents are older and have a list of what to pack when society breaks down. They can probably be packed and out in less than an hour and are headed to my sister’s in the country.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:


      Yes, ultimately family and community are the real answer. Personal protection is important, but a group is far better.

      So you’ve talked with your parents about scenarios? Are they practical people and took it well? Or are they just going along to make you happy?

    2. chris3win says:


      Your Parents should probably pre-position most of their preps out at your sisters house before things start to go south, they might be able to pack basics up in an hour and head down the road, but if bad things happen quickly, an older couple driving down the road with a bunch of things in a car will be a potential target. Plus, they can have everything that they need out in the country, including extra medicines, food, guns and ammo, and tools all set up.

  • Mrs. RLB says:

    We just moved to a new retreat and have put in an orchard and a garden. I have been thinking about the same things regarding security and here’s what we’ve done so far. Around the orchard my husband and I put a pretty tall electric fence, and the controller is inside the fence. We have a padlock on the gate, and a Dakota alert set up inside that if anyone did get in they would set off the Dakota alert. The garden itself will have an electric fence as well, but we haven’t gotten that far. My chicken coop will also be within that same electric fence. I have another Dakota alert set up near these, at the access way into this area. I have signs that say, “No trespassing, this property is protected by video surveillance, trespassers will be prosecuted”. When the SHTF, I plan to cross out the word prosecuted and write, “SHOT”. I am looking into modifications I can make to the fence charger down the road to make it more incapacitating and lethal for bad times.

    There are just some things we have little control over, and we do the best we can. Perhaps if Gena allows them to think she can’t fight back, she will have the element of surprise. Perhaps a modified shotgun would be useful. Or an extension cord stripped to the wire and wrapped on the doorknob, plugged in when needed (providing we still have power. Don’t tell them how you will fight back, but ahead of time use your head. Heck, put some food on the doorstep for them with a little something extra added. He’s let you know now that he would kill you for food. How about some isopropyl alcohol in an Everclear bottle for them when the time comes? Gena, get your B-tch on! You can outsmart other people who think the only way to survive is to take from others.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Ooouuucchhh, that is a tricky one.. isopropyl alcohol in a everclear bottle…


    2. chris3win says:

      Mrs. RLB,

      where you have just planted an orchard, I would turn it into a forest garden by not planting in rows, putting a bunch of different nut trees, including maples and maybe even a few Korean Pine trees (produce Pine Nuts to zone 3), put hundreds of herbs, like comfrey, mint, echinacea, nettles, hemp (where legal), opium poppies, yarrow, etc. around those trees, and lots of bushes like blueberries, aronia berries, sea buckthorn, etc. all as an understory. A forest garden is a great idea for most people who have an orchard, because to a group of hungry bad guys an orchard means that there is probably food there, but to 99.9% of the population of bad guys a forest garden (orchard in disguise) just looks like an unkempt woods, and that means no food. Hidden in plain sight. If you want to learn more about forest gardening, I’m sure that Marjory can point you in a great direction.

  • Lu Anne says:

    In an interview you posted, you commented on a recipe that you use to make shampoo. Would it be possible to post that recipe?
    Lu Anne

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Lu Ann,

      Oh you know what? I only sent that recipe out to my email list subscribers. Forgot I didn’t post it here at this site. But I just put it up for you. Check it out here.

      And yes, I totally love this new recipe! Although it isn’t perfect for after apocalypse.


      1. Mary N. says:

        One tblsp of baking soda in a cup of wam water will do wonders with your hair There are no suds but it cleans really well. After rinsing it out apply one tblsp ACV in one cup of warm water for rinsing. Leaves your hair feeling squeeky clean. I do this every so often just to clean my hair of residues. Works really well.

        1. Donna says:

          What is ACV?

          1. chris3win says:

            Apple Cider Vinegar (I only use Braggs Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, unless I am making my own…)

          2. Adele says:

            Apple Cider Vinegar

          3. Cecilia says:

            Apple Cider Vinegar

          4. Helen says:

            Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Maxi says:

    Gena, I too am a “seasoned citizen” with a bad back and carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands. I can no longer cock a semiautomatic pistol so in preparation for me to get my Concealed Handgun License, I got a revolver. Much easier to use. If you have or can get a bug-out location, move all but a small amount of your preps there. Tell no-one you have this secondary location. Hide the small amount of preps in your home where you can surrender it to your ex-neighbor and his buddies as if it is all you have. After a convincing amount of protesting, begging, etc., of course. With luck, though, you can tell a neighbor you’re going on vacation/visiting a sick relative/whatever and head for your bug-out location before the SHTF. Start out in a different direction and take a lot of detours to be sure you aren’t followed. This is true every time you go there. If you have to shelter in place have several guns (one with the main stockpile of your preps) and lots of ammunition. Then I hope someone on this thread can tell both of us how to secure the doors and windows.

  • Mike says:

    After the 2008 economic pitfall, I was having a windshield replaced in my truck, in the Phoenix area. Being an out going person who has always had a prepper mentality, I began chatting up the repairman to see how his view of economic reality might be shaping his future plans. For some reason people always open up to me and say the most intimate of things, even if those things are criminal. After telling the repairman how I was prepping a small one acre garden and simplifying my life style, he said “I’ve already spotted the weak ones in my neighborhood and I’m just going to take their stuff.” I smiled while thinking “It’s a good thing you don’t live near me in Texas, You would be one of the first I dealt with after the “Blue Flu” was rampant.

    Blue Flu – During a major social breakdown, police call in sick so they can stay home and take care of their families.

    Most people aren’t trained, nor do they enjoy confronting evil people as I do. But there are some pretty simple things one can do to keep evil people far away from you.

    1 – “No Man Is An Island Unto Himself”

    Community – Strength in Numbers. Evil people look for easy targets of opportunity, not situations where they might get hurt. Don’t be a loner, be a joiner and organizer. Make yourself and your prepping attractive to the Normal People. Community involvement in Church, PTA, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Neighborhood Watch, Police / Civilian ride along / community assist programs.

    Don’t scare people with your “end of world” ideas, show them the enjoyment of gardening. One step at a time, lead your neighbors to “Back to Basics” fun. Share seeds, canning jobs, etc. Be approachable, positive, and fun to be around.

    Gena, to you in particular, be the wise older mentor who contributes by sharing knowledge. Cultivate a large group of friends and associates, who ask your advice about matters of gardening and such.

    Always be main stream, don’t label yourself as a “Prepper”. The label is becoming synonymous with crazy, back woods, hill billy, survival nut (that you wouldn’t want your children to be around.

    Example: David Blume author of “Alcohol Can Be A Gas”, is tremendously gifted with ethanol knowledge, but people judge a book by it’s cover. If David Blume would shave his beard, dress in a Brooks Brothers suit, and adapt his persona to a main stream audience, he could be effective at altering our nation’s energy programs. Unfortunately, no one has pointed out to him that his Hippie “Stick it to the Establishment” tone and appearance instantly deafens the ears of Normal Mainstream America.

    DON’T BE ON THE FRINGE – You want plenty of good community citizens around you who will turn to you for guidance, when the poop hits the fan.

    2 – “Keep Your Fiends Close and Your Enemies Closer”
    Identify potential threats before they are threats. Start a neighborhood crime watch program with the local Police or Sheriff’s department. As a group, establish a no crime allowed in your area by taking proactive action.
    Get with you local newspaper and have them publish the police blotter list so everyone in the community knows who is prone to bad behavior. If the Police and the General Citizenry are watching those with bad intent, the Bad people will either move or change their ways. Don’t necessarily alienate slightly bad people, give them a chance to join the community and change their life’s for the better.
    Evil people like the shadows, they run from a spot light. Illuminate you community and send the bad people running for cover far away.

    3 – Go To Church and / or be around like minded people.

    4 – Embrace in your groups and clubs, those who have served in the military. While the intentions of a government might be suspect, never doubt the intentions of the common soldier. He or She didn’t run towards danger for the money. If anyone can survive with less than adequate provisions, while maintaining a discipline of duty to society it’s a Vet.

    5 – Guns – Know how to use a gun but don’t depend on a gun to save you. I long ago sold all my guns because, If I need a gun, one will be within reach. I have the training to take guns from bad people. If I’m within 21 feet of you, I can overpower you before you can draw your weapon. Ask a Cop, he will verify this. Guns are tools just like a hoe or shovel. Guns are best used as deterrents.

    Historical Note: The eastern martial arts weapons (except for the swords) are all gardening tools or common farm objects.
    Nunchukas – used to beat grain off the chaff.
    Sai (3 prong fork) – miniature pitchfork and garden tool.
    Bo – Walking staff / cane.
    They were developed as weapons when the government outlawed the owning of swords by common people.
    Within arm’s reach of each of you are weapons of all kinds. Pens, magazines, and anything you can grab hold of to beat or stab someone with.

    A few years ago I heard an audio recording from a man who was calling in to let his boss know he would be late for work. In the middle of leaving the message, he witnessed a traffic accident and began describing what he saw in the aftermath. After the initial accident he described the slovenly Red Neck who hit the other car and how he said something obviously rude and crude to the elderly old lady driving the car. What followed was the blow by blow description of the lady driver pepper spraying the Red Neck and four blue haired old ladies piling out of the car and beating the idiot down to the ground with their purses. One of the purses had a bible fall out of it, and the little old lady picked up the fallen bible and proceeded to continue beating some Jesus into the Red Neck. The Red Neck was on the ground trying to block all the incoming blows. (I wish I had that recording – I never laughed so hard). Is your purse loaded with a Bible?

    If you’re in the garden, don’t drop the shovel and run for the gun. Walk up (close the distance) to the stranger with a big smile and a warm greeting, with the innocent gardening shovel.

    Above all remember – Their are more good guys than bad guys.

    The bad guys group together in gangs like cowardly coyotes. The good guys simply need to remember that, united we stand – divided we fall.

    P.S. Let me extend an invitation to all the Good People out there, We have lots of room for you and your family in Texas, so come on down to our state of Attitude 😉

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Mike,

      Really good comments. Thanks for posting.

    2. Maxi says:

      Gena, make that several bottles of isopropyl Everclear. You wouldn’t want his buddies to go thirsty.

      Mike, two thumbs up. I’ve copied your comment and added it to my permanent prepping info.

      Re: “innocent” weapons. I saw a news report of a store owner using a baseball bat to beat off and chase off an armed robber. I now have a bat reclining next to my recliner. Solid wood, $25 at WalMart.

      Re: David Blume. If you want to negate someone, ridicule them. Witness Dan Quayle or the John Birch Society of the middle of the last century. It doesn’t help that Blume makes himself ridiculous.

      A tip of the ten-gallon from a fellow Texan.

    3. Eric says:

      Well thought out Mike. You make the point that most are good guys. It turns out to be true even in very bad areas. For example in Columbia the crime rates were cut in half by making a massive campaign using a booklet called “The Way to Happiness.” It is a non-religious, common sense moral code which does not make the person wrong and appeals to their desire to survive. A lot of people are good but start doing bad things under duress. These people can be changed by showing them with reason. The booklet I am talking about is a good way to do this. The effectiveness of the booklet was first demonstrated on a large scale in Soweto, South Africa. Every year on the anniversary of a particularly bloody day there would be riots and killing. Then a few weeks before that anniversary 500,000 of the booklets were passed out. The fact of no rioting was actually in the news in the US. “No Riots. Why No Riots?” It was then used to calm rioting in South Africa in general so that voting could occur. When Mandela was elected he put out a planner with daily quotes. The author of The Way to Happiness was the most quoted author in that planner. It has been used effectively in many areas of unrest since.
      I think it should actually be used with our leaders and corporate people so as to improve integrity and prevent decisions which would cause collapse. Some work has been done on this but probably needs to be better strategized.

  • JJM says:

    He may have been confessing his game plan OR expressing what very well can happen. Regardless he did you a favor in awakening your defensive and operational security strategy. Let no one know much of your plans.
    Though I garden and have arraigned numerous other preps – if I cannot Barter for what I absolutely need, I would be forced to take it.

  • Joe says:

    @Gena Im sorry to hear about your neighbor. I hope that all the positive responses on this board help you realize your not alone.
    The way that I see it, if/when the economy does collapse we’re all going to be in your position to one degree or another. Good, bad, prepared or unprepared we’re all going to have a neighbors like you have. If he would succeed in robbing you chances are someone is going to take it from him.

    I can’t give you any advice that hasn’t already been posted, I like a lot of the suggestions.

    Chances are if this jerk has been evicted at least once already and talks to his neighbors this way he’s going to have problems of his own if law and order breaks down.

  • Toni says:

    I too am an older woman with serious back problems. You need to purchase a Mossberg 20 gauge shot gun. Then you need to go to the dog pound and get a pit bull. The pit bull is a wonderful dog with a bad rap, but will defend you to the death. The pit bull next door, who by the way was trained to be really mean, attacked my husband. I watched that dog fly thru the air to get to my husbands throat. My husband put his arm up and the dog latched on to that, my husbands arm was damaged. Anyways after watching the pitbull in action, I realized that a dog like that is a must for a woman living alone.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Thanks for that. Yes, dogs have been partners for humans for so long.

    2. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      a 20 gauge is easier to handle. I really have a hard time with a 12 gauge with anything except bird shot. I could probably handle slugs or buckshot in a crisis, but it kicks really really hard…

      Although I did try some buckshot with reduced recoil that the police use. Hah, even thought guys want less recoil… It was easier on me.

      1. Jack says:

        I might suggest a carbine. Basically a short, light weight rifle, (often in a lighter, easier to shoot caliber or bullet) which can be used for self defense or hunting. A lever action carbine (Winchester, Marlin, Browning, Uberti or Henry brands seem to be well thought of) is easy to handle, light weight and accurate within reasonable ranges. They have been used to defend the homestead for over a hundred years (and are still as handy and reliable as when the design first cane out). If the carbine is in a pistol caliber (.38 Special, .357 Magnum, .45 Colt or .44 Magnum) you have a low recoil (kicking) weapon which is easy to reload and has eight to ten shots on hand. If you decide on a semiautomatic carbine (again in a pistol caliber), you have all of the advantages as the lever action but with a quicker reload. If you go with a rifle caliber carbine then you have a bit more recoil but more penetration and range. A handgun has the advantage of being small and easily concealed (do NOT underestimate the element of surprise) but is a bit harder to master than other firearm (though certainly not THAT difficult). The shotgun has a lot going for it- but it does have more recoil which can be intimidating to a new shooter. The shotgun can use birdshot (for hunting birds, rabbits, squirrel etc.), buckshot (for deer hunting or self defense) or slugs (a single projectile that acts as a makeshift short range rifle- again for deer or self defense). The shotgun is very versatility but generally has a lot more recoil than a carbine and usually holds fewer cartridges (bullets). Shotgun ammunition is heavier and bulkier than any of the ammo but it can be easier to find- especially in rights-restricted States.

  • cheryl says:

    I prep and encourage my patients to prep. I have made the following suggestions to them. Build a false back to your cabinets. Allow three weeks of food to show. Someone will take all the food. You will still have food hidden. Let people see you looking sad and out picking “weeds” to eat. Know what you can eat from your yard. Quit killing your dollarweed( add to salads smallleaves are sweeter,the biggest leaves are tangy) and dandelions. Learn about the cattails and how to harvest the pollen for flour, the knobby top when green and boiled tastes like corn. tubers fibrous and tastes like a potato.
    other places to hide our extra food; inside the dressers, the drawers do not reach the back. Stack cans behind the drawers, inside shoe boxes, place a shallow shelf above the door of the closet, above the light, most people will not be looking up in a closet whose light does not work.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Good points. And get to know your neighbors.

  • angie says:

    wow this post must have hit home so many comments ! gena has to move. So do I. I live in a remote area of big island surrounded at the moment by hostile male owners around me. I have sold my property since I realized clearly I am outnumbered on this remote island. I was also disturbed when I spoke with a local elder who organizes the breadfruit festival to encourage local sustainability. she told me some things that bother her (the youth in Hawaii text on cellphones while living in the same house) and how the locals have no fear of collapse (we’ll just take from the haoles)(newcomers, whites, non-locals) even tho I look like a local, once I speak it is clear I am not from here I do not speak pidgin or the local slang. Scary, this is in Hawaii folks

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Most of the islands of Hawaii are not a good place to be in collapse. One exception is Kauai. And it will be difficult everywhere.

  • Beth says:

    I am gluten sensitive and allergic to potatoes. Because of that, I have experimented with growing as well as cooking alternative grains and seeds. It has occurred to me that if someone raided my food storage or garden that some food might be left because only thoughtful and conscious people would recognize it as food. Amaranth, quinoa, Jerusalem artichokes, oca and other food stuff look like ornamental flowers while growing. If raiders broke into my stored food and didn’t recognize something, how likely are they to ask me how to cook it? Seems to me that they would probably just leave it behind. Not a complete answer but perhaps experimenting with unusual foods could be an element in the solution.

    Along the same lines, learn what common weeds in your area are edible. They are nutrition powerhouses even if they don’t have enough calories by themselves to keep you going for an extended period.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Yes Beth, excellent points.

    2. Great Grey says:

      Beth unfortunately such looters tend to destroy food supplies that they don’t take, even though they don’t know what it or how to use it.

  • Lula says:

    Have you seen the classic Kurosawa movie “The Seven Samurai” about ancient Japan, in which unemployed Samurai are hired by a poor village to help them defend against the bandits that raid their village every year, taking most (but not all) of their supplies of food they have grown. The bandits know (unlike the jerks that this post is talking about)that the farmers must live in order to produce more food.

    1. Lula says:

      Seven Samurai continued: One interesting thing in the movie is the courage and enthusiasm the villagers show when they become organized and trained by the samurai. Also of note is that they already know how to cooperate in growing food in their community, but are lacking in defense skills. Besides that, this movie is a masterpiece of black and white photography and even some humor as well as action. Worth watching.
      What concerns me about our culture is the divide between the so called “red necks” and the so called hippies. If people can’t read a book because of it’s cover, or get to know someone because of their clothes, they need to open their mind to the good people on the other side of that divide. We all have something to learn from each other.
      As a permaculturist, I have worked with both young and old folks from many walks of life, including “hippie”,ex-hippies and conservatives, all enthusiastic people concerned with growing food for their families and their neighbors, and learning many more self sufficiency skills. Many gardeners probably don’t know anything about guns, but none are layabouts planing to take away other people’s food. A lot of younger people seem to have risen above this imaginary divide and are finding ways to co-operate with their whole community. In the end that is the only thing that will save us from the “bandits”

    2. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Lula,

      I’ve heard of it and will watch it now. Sounds good. And there have been other good comments about it.

  • Joe says:

    The Seven Samurai we redone in an American version called The Magnificent Seven. Same theme only old west gunfighters and a Mexican village. Great movie

  • John R says:

    In this part of Ky, we have many groups of Amish folks. Peace loving, no guns kind of folk. I have heard many people say if the crap hits, they will go take from the Amish. Sad.

    Guns in the garden. I always carry my Ruger LCP 380 in my pocket, no mater where I go. Into the garden around my critters, I open carry my Ruger Mark 3 22 cal with the first 2 rounds in the mag being bird shot. If you hit a dog in the butt at 10 feet, it is about like getting hit with a BB gun.(at least that is about how loud he howled) After the bird shot, I can get serious then. If I am going on the back of the farm, I open carry my Springfield XDM 40 cal. You never know what you may run into back there.

    Marjory, it is sad to say, but at my age, I don’t know how deep I sleep. I have always had a key lock on my bedroom door, but now I place a kitchen chair under the door knob, like we did in the olden days, in addition to the lock, and a 12 gauge Remington with waxed shells in the chamber. I read every day in the news paper (and I’m in a city of 28,000)of day time and night time break end robberies. It seems as the unemployment rates go up, so do the break ins. I want to be ready, if the sucker makes enough noise to wake me…

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi John,

      Yes, there is a direct correlation between unemployment and increasing robberies and thefts. Whew, it sounds like you are readier than most.

      Why are the shotgun shells waxed?

      1. John R says:

        A waxed shell is a poor mans slug. I drill a small hole in the end of the shot gun shell, pour out the “shot”. Mix it with melted wax, and pour it back in the shell. I can shoot a 6×6 timber with this shell and it will go through it. I live alone, so no worry about hitting someone in another bedroom, but it will go through walls to where the bad guy would be.

  • Danelle says:

    I agree a gun may be good to protect yourself and stuff. When you are not well it is also not the easiest thing to do no matter how much you may want to. It is my feeling that your brain and wits will and can go much farther in defense than a gun with no wits. So building a community that can help protect you and what you have. Having extra to give to those in need. Providing a decoy for those that will take. However if this is a long term situation and it is apparent you are no worse for ware that can show up like a large spot light. So maybe a plan to get out to a safer place and follow that plan may be in order. Having a few different places to go. If you have places you can go then maybe having some of your stored food there in advance would be beneficial. Setting up a look out so you can see people coming? Having a place to hid or get out quickly. Face it if they kill you you have no need for the food any way. Hide food in a false wall in a box spring mattress buried false bottom in a trash can with garbage on top faux paint cans or other containers to look like wood table legs learn to forage learn some good valuable skills like medical something valuable that people will need you for? These are just some ideas that pop into my head. The main thing is let the fear go and think about what you can do within your limitations. focus on what you can do not what you can’t. There is always something that can be done. As long as you have your wits about you. What you know and how you think can be more important than what you have. If a tornado fire or something else comes and takes your house away all the stored food would be gone and not by gun point from some mad max thug. Now what are you going to do?

  • Douglas Plaisted says:

    Just found your site and liked what I saw. You asked for recommendations on firearms training. There is a site that has a nice mix of free, premium, and training videos. It is the PersonalDefenseNetwork.com. Free is good, and they definitely have good info. The link I am posting is a recent video on why “high capacity” magazines.
    I am going to take the contrarian view, arguing that a homesteading couple with two children facing an unknown number of armed bandits only need four bullets – one for each member of the family.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Hi Douglas,

      Well welcome to the site.

      I completely agree that a single family our on their own is not viable solution. And the biggest mistke people make when buying a survival retreat is to head way out into the hinterland – which is just about as dangerous as being in the middle of a dense urban area. Chekc out he video on How To Find A Survival Retreat and you’ll see your point!

      Thanks so much for commenting.

  • Ranger says:

    I likewise also just found this site and have read through a lot of these comments and have found them very interesting. If I’m repeating something that someone has already mentioned – pardon me – I didn’t read all of the comments. When it comes to using a life terminating piece of equipment (a gun), let me recommend getting hands on training v. simply looking at a video. If someone is going to “Kill” another human, then get hands on trainig on how to do it. Learning to use a new tool and to use it as it “must” be used, can only be taught in person. A gun is used for just that, to kill another human being. People say they want to protect their family and property, then that may mean killing another person to do it. Yes guns are for killing animals as well for food, but if we’re going to get a gun to “protect” our garden then that may mean killing someone to keep them out of our vegetable patch. Killing someone over a cucumber or a head of lettuce isn’t something I like to think about. But in the end, if that’s what we’re saying we’re willing to do, then make sure we know how to use that tool. Otherwise the bad guys will take that tool right out of our hands and use it against us.

    That’s my humble opinion.

    P.S 23yrs military training has taught me to be very “talented” in how to use a variety of these tools. So again in my humble opinion, I would recommend, depending on a persons physical ability, a 9mm (or a 357) handgun as well as a 20ga. or (12ga) shotgun, both tools have their place in a defense strategy.

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Ranger, thank you for your post. I find the subject of defense both disgusting and fascinating. I’ve done enough interviews with collapse survivors to know increased violence goes hand in hand with collapse.

      So I feel it is important to at least try and awaken to this. I also agree that thee are things that cannot be conveyed with video or books and must be person to person Many of the paleolithic skills are like that. botany – it is damn near impossible to be able to learn plants without a lot of help from other humans.

      I’ve done the Appleseed training – which is not self-defense, but marksmanship. And I am looking to do some other kind of handgun training.

      thanks again.

  • thomas says:

    Marjory Wildcraft, if you would like any advice or have any questions about firearm selection or just firearm in general, email me henrybowman1990@aol.com

    1. Marjory Wildcraft says:

      Thank you so much Thomas. I will email you – I’ve made some decisions, but always prefer to hear what else I might should know…

  • MrApple says:

    I am a long time gun owner, a somewhat recent CCW Permit holder, and a truly novice gardener. It saddens me that this is not the first time I’ve heard of someone making the “I have the gun so I can take from those that don’t have one” comment. Why they find it acceptable to take from someone else when it’s a SHTF situation but demand stricter laws and harsher sentencing during normal times boggles my mind. Everyone NEEDS to have the ability to defend themselves and their property which could keep them alive.

  • Jerome Dubis says:

    Dear Marjory,
    Thank You for your e-mails, as they always bring a smile even on a rainy day. I haven’t bought into your garden program yet, but I will as soon as I can put it to use. I have a plan for a Biodome that I will start in the spring, that’s right, I said spring as in Michigan. I’ve been reading the comments here and I think the best experience I can pass on is these two web sites:
    The NRA has been training people for over 150 years. Between these two web sites you will be able to find answers to all your questions.
    Always remember: A secrete is no longer a secrete once you tell it to someone.
    Again, Thank You

  • Steve Hood says:

    Age and the existence of a family (requiring defense) are both factors ti consuder. Parents with dependent children should always be prepared with weapons, tactics and provisions. Retirement age folks without such concerns may want to consider the “easy way out” to avoid being victimized or subjected to further existence in world that they probably don’t wish to be a part of.


  • J.D. says:

    I’m sad to say that this is what our country has gotten to. My parents during Y2K said, “If we don’t have it we have enough ammo to take it”. I thought about this and then realized that if I go out “hunting” for my food then I have a chance of getting shot in return, it’s just what I would do if someone tried to take what it mine. So that is why I begin prepping. I haven’t made much headway yet due to my vocation; so I hope the world will stay together for at least another 10 years, then I think I’ll be set.

  • JS says:

    Wow…It is really sad and disturbing that some people plan to take from and kill others in an emergency. This isn’t really a “gun thing” so much as a “violence thing”…all humans are capable of violent acts in defense of themselves or those they love. But there is a small percentage of people in any society who simply ARE violent at their core and would harm others if it would benefit them and if they could get away with it. They are mentally-unbalanced monsters who look and (often) act just like everyone else unless the “mask” slips. Such people will view a disaster as an opportunity and will carry out violence with whatever is at hand….hockey stick, baseball bat, knife. Doesn’t have to be a gun. I think, however, that these people are in for a surprise when they find that their peaceful neighbors are willing to band together and fight back if necessary. I would never want to hurt another person, but I would if I had to in order to defend my life. And I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it.

  • Phil P, MD says:

    IPA or isopropyl alcohol is NOT that lethal or debilitating. You would need 1/2 quart of 70% IPA to be mixed in with Everclear and then the person who ingested it would experience stomach cramps and other sympyoms before becoming incapacitated. You then would have a very angry ass**** who would probably burn your place down with you in it. Methanol or wood alcohol is much more toxic and rapidly causes irreversible blindness. I do not recommend either. The references are from “Up to Date” the bible for ER diagnosis and current treatment of medical problems. You need a subscription to access the full article.



  • Carroll the Irishman says:

    I have to say that I wouldn’t bet on him doing much because I’ve seen his kind before. Talks tough but, tucks tail and runs. PLUS he fails to understand that millions will shoot first if they feel threatened if the SHTF. I do NOT think he believes that 1 or more scenarios could happen in America today. That’s foolish to not see the real world as it is. The wise prepares and prays that nothing bad happens. The fool wishes they were prepared and prays they’ll survive. If I know a person or people who trash me or other preppers and say they think me and all the others are all nut cases, I remind them that if something bad does happen they may wish they had a nut and not to come calling for any kind of help. They may end up speaking to several weapons pointed from different directions. I try to reason but, sometimes it’s easier to talk to a rock.

  • Greg says:

    One other thing it seems food gardeners may use to take care of that mindset person is a good shovel. I am sure they will need to be planted too after they attempt to take what they think they could get with their firearm. I do not have one child that will go hungry from someone with that mindset, so they better start their own gardens, or they will be pushing up daisy’s themselves.

    1. Rick Allen says:

      Dont bury, compost. During Geoff Lawton’s online Permaculture class, he said that if any visited his farm and caught him looking at them with a studied expression, he was just thinking about how well they might compost. lol!

  • Richard says:

    In a previous article you promised to provide a list of barter items and tips on personal defense to anyone who asked for them. It has been a couple of weeks and I haven’t received either list by email. Are you going to send them anytime soon?

    I enjoy reading your articles.


  • John R says:

    I think OPSEC is very important, but when I built my greenhouse visible from the road and also my critters are visible, my OPSEC is no good. One thing I do is ever so often I go to my back yard shooting range and fire off a magazine or 2 with my AR-15 with a bump and slide stock. This makes it fire like a fully automatic. I know this gets the attention of all the undesirables in the neighborhood. I have a 25 yard silhouette target with 8 holes in the center mass area in the window of my back door. I am trying to get the reputation of a “crazy”, and this may keep people at bay.

    1. Matt B says:

      Recently I flipped one of those ‘Black-Hat’ preppers who amass weapons and ammo with the intent of taking food and supplies from other preppers when the SHTF. This guy is an ex-Marine Vietnam vet. He opened his safe and proudly showed off his AR-15’s, handguns, and ammo to me. I was shocked when he told me what he was planning to do. I had known him for years and never suspected he had this dark side. I told him I was a prepper with over a year’s supply of food and water in my basement. He laughed. Then I brought him over to my house and showed him what was in my safe. I had twice as much as he had and I am a Vietnam veteran with combat experience too. Then I told him most preppers are well equipped and trained and are able to take care of themselves. Then I told him if I saw him walking up my driveway in a SHTF situation I would shoot him on sight. The light went on in his head (About a year later). Now he has a basement full of freeze dried food and has profusely apologized to me several times and thanked me for turning him around. He now realizes it will be highly dangerous to himself to procure supplies by force that he could easily acquire now before things get bad. I’m still leery of him and will be very cautious around him in a post-SHTF world just knowing his mindset but I am glad he is on the right track now.

  • Indigo says:

    I’d like to know why Marjorie didn’t ask him, why he thought it was OK to steal at gunpoint, rather than take responsibility for himself?
    So why does his man own a shop?Wouldn’t it be easier to just take money and supplies at gunpoint .
    Why work,when you can steal?
    Why garden when you can steal food?
    Something about this makes no sense.

  • debbie says:

    Back in the 70’s a “gentleman” my husband worked with told him the samething only he wouldn’t just take the food, but kill us or anyone for our food stuffs if he needed it. He’s died now, (natural causes) but we’ve got our CCL’s.

  • Gary G says:

    Hi Marjory,
    That person while obviously unethical gave you a valuable lesson without you or your family being hurt in the process and while you still had time to fill the gap in your plan. I am a pro 2nd amendment person and do own fire arms as well. My wife who did not like guns when we met is now proficient with her chosen guns to be able to protect herself from people like the store owner if they come to bring harm to our family. The I will take from others attitude is so un-American it really upsets me. You strike me a very nice person who left alone would not feel the need to arm yourself. In a time when we should be focusing our money and energies on providing for our families in a shtf situation you felt the need to spend that precious time and money on weapons. For your sake I am glad you did, because there are a lot of people like the shop owner and the oblivious who will be coming to take from the prepared in tough times. God bless you for telling the story it it helps one other family protect themselves it is well worth it.

  • Richard says:


    I will provide you as many Front Sight Diamond or Ambassador lifetime memberships as you need for you and your family to go get trained at Front Sight. I will provide them free or we can barter. You choose. My wife and I go once or twice a year to get tuned up and for additional training.

    God Bless


    1. Ed says:

      God Bless you Richard!
      I have always wanted to go to Front sight, but never seem to get close to enough money! It’s great that you would send Marjorie!
      Now on to the main subject!
      I tried to warn a neighbor back a few years!
      He looked at me and said I’ll just come to your house!
      I walked away thinking, you come for food, I’ll feed your kid’s!
      You come for my stuff, you’ll meet Jesus, real quik!
      Extreme Prejudice will be used in certain instances!
      God Bless!

  • AlexM says:

    Aren’t these idiots aware that looters will be shot, not to mentioned that he’s a shop owners which makes him a primary target for other looters

  • Most of my neighbors are armed ad am I but we also have food storage. It is a common thing here in Utah but we are also ready to defend ourselves and assist each other. We have a family like relationship and I’m stunned when I hear about neighbors like this who openly state they would hurt their neighbors to get what they want if in need. What a sad mentality.

  • Jerry says:

    Another good reason not to garden.

    I don’t garden. I am no good at it. I don’t water, I don’t weed … I don’t even know the meaning of the word “weed”. I don’t fertilize, I don’t cultivate, I don’t plant, etc.

    Mother nature does all that for me. I am a very good harvester and a very good eater. I eat virtually everything (save the Nightshade family).

    Was talking to my massage therapist the other day and she made the comment that when this goes down (as I told her it was going to) people would come to my property and steal my food. I told her that they would have to pass miles and miles of the same items in order to “rob” me of mine.

    I love wild parsnips, wild carrots, catnip, cattails, wild asparagus, chicory, dandelion, I have salted in some Jerusalem Artichoke, but they take over and for all intents and purposes are wild. Salsify, thistle, gooseberries and currents are moving into my property en masse and I have even found Milkweed is moving closer to my kitchen.

    In addition to the burdock root, I have begun to enjoy the leaves and the stems of the plants.

    Curled dock is a particular favorite and that cousin of spinach, goosefoot goes well in my salads. Found some Black Walnut trees on my travels and have those spotted for future attention.

    It would not bother me a whit if the gardeners and the gun fruit-cakes face off. They can have my food, I will just go a little further into the land to get the real bounty.

    Virtually all of the pine tree (I have hundreds on my land) is edible with the seeds being of particular interest. And I don’t even have to kill the tree to get the benefits.

    I don’t understand gardening and I don’t see why I need to.

  • Caroline Cooper says:

    I agree with the shopkeeper. He won’t need to grow food. The 1960’s movie “The Magnificent Seven” explains why farmers need to be able to protect themselves from bandits. Unfortunately, “buying protection” can end up with the “protection” becoming the new oppressor. People that want to be really free need to learn how to protect themselves because buying protection from the warrior class was the humble beginning of the nation state. And look where that’s got us: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Magnificent_Seven.

  • Jerry says:

    Oh, I forgot the most important food of all. It’s the tea that I spend all day filtering and brewing with the finest ingredients that I can find.

    It’s called URINE and I relish every drop. I don’t think anyone with a gun will want to steal that.

    I drink about 70% or so of my daily output and if I had a problem with my food and water being disrupted, 100% of my daily output would be consumed with no difficulty.

  • Pam says:

    While the thought of having to “kill” someone in order to protect our property and our lives isn’t pleasant, it is something that you need to consider. Each person needs to know where their “line in the sand” is when it comes to their food & their lives. Personally, I take the approach of growing, selling and teaching as many people as I can to grow beyond organic food. I also believe it keeping firearms and being highly proficient with them. As far as “what” to carry… a retired Captain of the Federal Marshall who is a dear friend taught me the most important thing… if a woman is using a handgun (concealed) it is typically in a very close encounter during an attack. As such, a .38 revolver with an enclosed hammer is best due to it cannot be jammed by the attacker. If an attacker can get his hand on a 9mm handgun it will very likely jam. I prefer a 20 gauge shotgun for home defense. Re: learning to shoot- a .22 rifle is fantastic for first time shooters. There are others that we appreciate as well but those are the very basics.

  • Jerry says:

    Oh, and you have medicine on this site also. Your own most perfectly tailored medicine is urine and that is why there is such a taboo surrounding it.

    Figure it out, that which is best for you or truest is that which is the most denigrated by the controllers.

    Same as the weeds that all you gardeners are busy cursing and all the bugs you hate.

  • Caroline Cooper says:

    From your post, it wasn’t clear to me which side the shopkeeper would work for. The bandits? OR the paid protection? Considering he’s a presently a shopkeeper and not a thief, he was likely be thinking about being part of the paid protection or the warrior-class. Do you know which side he wanted to work for?

  • sargintrock says:

    A lot of Good, thoughtful comments concerning collapse of Law and Order scenarios.
    We will have to have the mindset of our forebears who settled this country, when Pennsylvania was the Far west or Kaintuck(the dark and bloody ground) was the frontier.
    I don’t want to open that “can of worms” about corrupt government and broken treaties. Let’s concentrate on small family groups trying to make a life for themselves after the horrors of Europe and indentured servitude!
    There were always bands of River pirates or Renegade Indians on raiding parties or outright Wars(French and Indian) that menaced the settlers lives. They learned to never leave the cabin without a firearm and weapons were always kept within arms reach, no matter WHAT they were doing.
    The STRONG survived and the WEAK fell by the wayside. GET USED TO IT!!!A strong faith in our Lord is just as important as a weapon, I might add! People will adapt and develop Tribes or City states of like minded individuals, the main point being there is strength in numbers. Survival is not for the “faint hearted”, that’s why it’s called SURVIVAL.
    I urge everyone to listen to Hank Williams jr.’s ” A Country Boy can Survive”. If this song thrills you to your very marrow and fills you with pride in our Heritage, then I figure you’ll do fine, whatever the future brings. Sharpen your skills cause the day is fast approaching, keep yore head on a swivel and yore powder dry and when it hits the fan, be prepared to Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!
    De Oppresso Liber!

  • doncraigtheodore says:

    You too can leave and Live As and Amongst the Ever Living.
    Well it follows along with the old adage. “You can’t [shouldn’t] Trust anyone but Thyne Own Self”. Not even the one you married because 99.9% of us all have joined to the wrong one by our own choice. Some have accidently rejoined/married the one who is/was our other-half before we arrived on earth/Jarsoom that being the reality [Married not Joined together by god as is the ordination from on ancient times] then we must be at all times either ready to defend ourselves unto death [either the aggressor/’s or the demise of the body assigned to you whilst you are here].
    That being said, why fight when you can and are assured of winning if you realize that you were not meant to live but merely survive here until you learn that you and your living are not of or from here and you too may leave soon as you realize what you knew before you woke [birthed] here in the state of confusion/illusion and realized you were but a helpless babe who knew that ‘Oops now I have to do this!’ Most of us forgot that initial ‘Earth bound’ thought. Those that haven’t or didn’t have endeavored to atone for that which we did that caused up to be here. When you get it you too will again be capable of losing the surly bonds of earth and again begin to know what you knew and really Live [amongst those who are ever-living].
    Some of us are assigned to be here to inform you of that/the facts and point you to ‘the door off the holodeck known as the earthly experience’. Not to do it for you but to Inform you that and of where it is you are. The instructions/method is easily found for they are imprinted within you who were or are to be again amongst the ever-living.
    You knew them now you just need to recognize them and rekindle the fire/essence of living that was temporarily put on hold, lest you prove you were in fact guilty of that which caused you to be here and are destined to suffer death and become as if you never were so that you are not a polluting factor of the realm of those whom it is are Ever Living. Tis’ that inequity that you didn’t correct, correct it and you too will never do it or be guilty of it again.
    Pause for the Cause: as this is not the venue to continue this line/direction.

  • Steven C says:

    The shop owners response is disappointing. In the event of a collapse he will become part of the problem and not the solution. This is one reason why “preppers” keep their activities mostly private. Of course, now you know in advance one person you will need to protect yourself from in the event of a crash.

  • Joe says:

    Well the obvious response to that situation is to step back and take the guys picture with your cell phone and when he asks why you did that tell him it is for the “SHOOT ON SIGHT’ posters that you are getting ready for SHTF. Thank him profusely for the warning.

  • Dennis Bosworth says:

    My wallet was stolen at our local Wall Mart store this month. This has never happened to me before and I realized the environment I was shopping in was ripe for this kind of thing. The whole area there has a high density of street beggars. This increase of street beggars is something I have noticed over a period of about a decade. Many people steal as if it was their right to steal. It wouldn’t take much to advance them to the point that they would kill as if it were their right to kill. I sense this mentality is increasing in popularity. In making the distinction between the STANDARD of living and the QUALITY of living, the erosion I am writing about has been going on for quite some time. It makes me think that our decline would be a slow and agonizing process, but then, perhaps it will get to the point where the floor will just suddenly drop out from under us. I have no way of knowing how this decline will eventually manifest itself. Over a long period of time, we become desensitized over our decline – it is like being slowly boiled in a pot of water.
    Living in a rural environment, we already have a number of guns, but I don’t carry them around at all times – in fact, one of my handguns is somewhere under the cloths hamper (I think) collecting dust-bunnies. The others are in a gun safe which is locked. Someone armed could spring on me without much worry of resistance. So how do we go about our lives without constantly being on the muscle – which is about as dangerous as being assailed by an armed intruder? This is a great discussion, and it begs the question, how do we protect ourselves while simply shopping to fending off an armed insertion? Guns are a necessary tool, but they are only good for certain situations. What we really need is an arsenal of defensive tools. A gun is not a cure-all for every danger. I am adding to my arsenal, knowing where not to be.

  • DJ says:

    Nonsense. I doubt this conversation even actually occurred. It most certainly did not go as described. “Shopkeeper?” Did you travel back to the 1950s for your research? While I don’t doubt that this kind of ignorance actually exists, even the most ignorant shopkeeper understands that threatening customers/visitors – even while debating theoretical scenarios – is lousy business. Moreover, somebody who relies on production chains to provide the the items that drive profits would be unlikely to make such an outrageous and shortsighted claim. Normally, this could be dismissed as run-of-the-mill claptrap. In this case, however, your flimsy pretext borders on irresponsible. Encouraging (read:scaring) people to stockpile firearms only aggravates an already inflamed problem in the world. If the only thing standing between you and the hordes of bandits is your gun, it’s already too late. Even if you manage to defend yourself for a little while, more and more will come and eventually you will be dead or worse and your estate plundered. Period. It’s the same fallacy held by those who think they can defend themselves against a “tyrannical government” with a gun. Fiction. If you’re really concerned about such things (and by things, I mean imagined perils), I suggest you move to a highly secluded area that isn’t likely to be reached by someone who isn’t able to provide for themselves. That’s the only certain way to ensure survival. Anything else is delusional. In the meantime, however, please stop advocating gun ownership as a solution to theoretical and implausible problems. The only thing that is actually going to result from more people getting guns is more dead people.

  • harvey montgomery says:

    Marjory, I don’t usually leave comments, but this one I couldn’t pass up. first like somone else said the guy is a jerk, true enough. but there is a world full those kind of people, so we have too deal with them. and using a gun is what it takes then so be it. if I was you I would not broadcast that I bought guns and learned to use them. you are telling people your business. and that helps in their plan too take your food and life. your readers don’t have the need to know. this may sound a little harsh but better that than dead.

  • Rick Allen says:

    I had this experience over 25 years ago. I belong to a church that has always encouraged its members to prep for unexpected bumps in life, like losing ones job or long term storm damage. One of my friends was teaching a neighbor about why one should prepare food storage for disaster. The guy finally got it and then made the statement, “I will need to buy some guns as well, to protect what I have.” My friend, bless her naive Pollyanna like, ‘everything will be roses and we will sit around the campfire singing Michael Row The Boat Ashore’ heart, said “you don’t need guns, just do what we plan to do and share with your neighbors and friends.”

    I’m not making this up. She thought that in time of disaster, the good folk would politely line up at the door for a handout. Yeah, maybe the first day, but the next day there would be 10 times as many people and they wouldn’t be looking for a little hand out. She simple couldn’t fathom that happening. Believing in not wasting breath on someone unwilling to learn, I simply shrugged, wished her family luck with that plan and walked away.

    I believe in helping my fellow neighbor, and my friends and family know I will always help if I can, but when people come demanding my families food, then things will get a little bit dicey.

  • Ricardo Ruiz says:

    Hi Marjory, interesting views on the subject of weapons and the possibility of needing to use them if the system is “down”. For years in my work with peasants and indigenous groups in Mexico I discovered the power of community life. Where different knowledge and skills get added to the group. In these groups the talents and skills are added and shared in the community. For example some know “cure” others produce different types of food, and others know how to perform jobs that contribute to community development. In these communities the important decisions are taken by assembly. When there are clear rules of conduct and the conviction that the group gives him the strength to each family and individual lives, it is much easier to face difficult situations where precise use of the defense force. An example of this are the so-called “Self-Defense” that are already emerging in many parts of Mexico, where family members get together to deal with these situations. Facing these circumstances only as an individual but you are well armed it becomes very difficult. My suggestion is to join a group that can implement a plan in case of an eventuality arises as described above. That I think the only option.

    I think readers of Marjory are good people who are looking for some way to change the paradigm of civilization is collapsing today. So I think we urgently need to create new communities flourish these new forms of community life, where respect for others can germinate. It would be tragic to let us wrap fear and focus only muster to repel these possible attacks, which are real.

    I apologize for the lack of syntax, but I am using the google translator.


  • Spider says:

    I live in Adelaide Australia where most guns are illegal though we do have gun crime I sleep with something beside my bed just in case someone breaks in for self defense .. But I`m glad I don`t have to keep a gun in the bedroom as I friend of mine in the US does though he has never had to use it just having it there should tell him something .. I do not sit in judgment of your way of life , I have always wanted a hand gun just for target shooting , for no other reason ..
    Take care and your aim true .. Spider ..

  • Yeah, unfortunately, this attitude is out there far more so that peaceable, gentle folks such as yourself can imagine. However, this kind of moron will have a short career as a ‘taker’ in some post apocalyptic scenario, because they will sooner or later run into other people like themselves and will cancel each other out, OR they will run into ‘hardened’ communities full of ‘gun nut survivalists’ (like me and crew) who will NOT go quietly or submit to such thugs.

  • Marty says:

    Marjorie, I’m glad your eyes are now wide open. After 31 years in law enforcement I can tell you it’s everywhere. After retirement from a large police department in Southern California, I had to get out. Yes, it’s the same in California. We moved to the mountains of Central Utah with what I thought would be better people nearby. We have a few of the same kind of idiots in a fairly rural area. You can’t seem to get away from them. Even people who know I’m always armed, have made the same kind of statements to me. My advice to all like minded preppers is to buy a variety of weapons, LEARN to use them, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE. You don’t have to burn 100’s of dollars worth of ammo to practice. There are many programs available which stress ‘dry firing’ exercises which probably are even better training then using live ammo. The point is the good folks have to be armed or the bad folks will have everything. Marty

  • Great Grey says:

    For those that think just having a gun will get them what they what they want, better look at what happened to Jessie Jame’s gang or the Dalton brothers. Some city slickers knocked the stuffing out of some country bums.

  • HSMom2004 says:

    Having a gun to garden actually is practical simply from the perspective of vermin such as gophers that would ruin a garden or snakes like rattlers that may get in one’s chicken coop.

    It is also beneficial to protect oneself from larger animals who would harm one’s family such as feral hogs and wild cats or coyotes. In our case, small to medium sized feral hogs go in the freezer. They have been a blessing to sustain us during some financial trials – and have been able to be used to bless others going through worse trials. The mountain lion has not been spotted in a good while, thankfully, and the coyotes have started keeping their distance again. Nonetheless, being prepared and accustomed to the weapons and any quirks they may have can be lifesaving. I once tried to shoot a pest at point blank distance. Nothing. Come to find out, the pistol shoots low and wide right. I had not practiced with that one to know that. I was thankful it was not something trying to do harm to my children with its great inaccuracy.

    In another situation, my husband took my dd’s to look for a Christmas tree on the property only to have our dogs go after a set of 15 hogs or more – two different sets of them on a single outing. He only had the single-shot pistol with him. The girls got set in a safe tree, but DH realized if they had gone just a little further and come up on them, he would not have been in a position to protect them with the gun he took. The older dd (10) was petrified and wants nothing to do with looking for Christmas trees here again. The younger (7) was scared at the time, but looked at it as an adventure and she’s already made plans for next Christmas’ outing.

    Even so, from a preparation point of view, I have talked to some about making sure they have necessary supplies put back as they can. One person (a family member) told me 1) he had his rifle, so he was ready because he could hunt his own meat. Really? With everyone else out hungry and thinking the same thing, too? If there is no electricity, how are you going to store it? and 2) that he was coming to our house. While I wouldn’t mind his family and him being here, the fact that he would come unprepared with five mouths to feed and little to nothing of his own to bring to feed them is not a good option. He’s getting that, but if anything happens in the next two years, it will be a problem for them.

    From the other perspective, it is critically important to know how to use one’s weapons properly and be proficient in their use. For threats from people, most times the person in the right can simply point their weapon at the other who would do the homeowner or other individuals harm and the other will go away without having to fire a single shot. Being prepared to provide for ourselves and our family as well as being able to share with others in need as we can is wonderful. For those who would do no harm but are simply hungry, sharing if we are able to is good. Being prepared for those who would do us or our family harm is a sad necessity.

  • FreeMan says:

    When all the prepper’s without defenses are gone, and all the sons o’ b’s that will use their guns to take the food have taken all the food, there will only be those prepper’s WITH defences left, they will be the ones with the skills to survive long after the sob’s have died out of starvation because they will not be able to eat their guns…

    We are in the UK and cannot easily access guns, but there are other means. More along the lines of what has been described as ‘wicked’ although Hawthorn hedges with Blackberry woven in help 🙂 We as a family have discussed this many times, our children have been brought up to think regularly about what we would be able to do should TSHTF. The fact that the skills of food growing and foraging in the wild will go with us for life feels far better than the thought of shooting it out. We probably would not survive here at home, but the skills we have are easily carried (in our minds) and the fact that we grow, not just to eat, but to produce seeds SHOULD stand us in good stead!

    Love Peace and Respect

  • Jennie says:

    This is why I am armed and well-trained, as well as quiet about what I have and why I have it.

  • Mike French says:

    It seems that we all must try and lay low under the radar for now because as you just witnessed the people whom don’t give a damn are going to come and take what we have. So as for me and my wife we are learning and doing as much as we can before the SHTF. So we are prepared with weapons and know how to use them to protect what we have. So That’s my advice lay low ,learn what you can,get weapons,learn how to protect yourself and family and live as best as you can.

  • Robert Severs says:

    The normalcy bias, or normality bias, refers to a mental state people enter when facing a disaster. It causes people to underestimate both the possibility of a disaster occurring and its possible effects. This often results in situations where people fail to adequately prepare for a disaster, and on a larger scale, the failure of governments to include the populace in its disaster preparations. The assumption that is made in the case of the normalcy bias is that since a disaster never has occurred then it never will occur. It also results in the inability of people to cope with a disaster once it occurs. People with a normalcy bias have difficulties reacting to something they have not experienced before. People also tend to interpret warnings in the most optimistic way possible, seizing on any ambiguities to infer a less serious situation

  • Debbie says:

    I’m a little late in getting in on this post but, I’m not surprised at all. We are from AR (that’s Arkansas) but live in TX at the moment. We are big on the 2nd and believe in self protection. My own SON said just what this man did and my husband told him “That’s all well and good until you run into someone like me.” They THINK they can take what they want and with a lot of people it would work. But, you just never know who you are going to run into; veterans, hunters other preppers with lots of experience and lots of ammo. It all sounds good and easy to them but it’s a HUGE gamble and risk.

    Let me give you a tip if you are ever faced with a crowd coming for your food. Meet them at the door well before they get there. Meet them with a gun. They WILL stop. Most people are not up for running headlong into gun fire. One person usually stands out as the ‘leader.’ They will incite the rest to move. THAT is the one you take out and it will stop the rest. It’s harsh, but, it’s reality in survival.

  • DaveM says:

    There is a great deal to be said for taking all steps possible to “fortify” your home or at least make it difficult to get into for those who are not wanted. Reinforcements, including bars, for all doors are easy to install and reasonably priced. Similarly, one can add bars to windows or place inconspicuous strips of razor wire where they will be “inconvenient” to anyone trying to get in that way (broken bottles/glass shards on the windows sills couldn’t hurt). Have a “panic room” in your home–keep at least some of your supplies in there and it will do double duty!

    It can be a very good idea to learn about improvised weapons and home protection, all considerations about firearms aside. In some states, the average citizen is not allowed to carry a can of Mace. No one will fault you from having a can or several of oven cleaner on hand, preferably close to the door or any other potential “weak point”. An attacker may try to “burn you out”. Have several fire extinguishers handy and make sure to keep them charged. A blast to the face from a fire extinguisher just might slow an attacker down, too.

    The movie “Straw Dogs” includes an excellent, though fictional, portrayal of two people trying to defend their home against a group of attackers who are trying to force their way in. It’s worth watching to see what they come up with. Among other things, they keep water boiling on the stove, and when someone manages to get one of the boards off the windows, they throw a pot full through the gap.

    Quite agree with the person who mentioned baseball bats–as Clint Eastwood put it in “Pale Rider”: “there’s nothing quite like a nice piece of hickory”. With minimal training, an ordinary cane or walking stick can be an excellent defensive or offensive weapon. Practicing is excellent low-impact exercise.

    ANYTHING that extends your reach or keeps the bad guys at a distance from you can be a lifesaver. Learn what can be done with whatever is at hand. And yes, get yourself a pump-action shotgun (a 20 gauge has a lot less recoil and plenty of power for hunting or self-defense). Working the slide is the international signal for “get out of here!” As things stand, 90%+ of defensive uses of firearms do not involve a shot being fired. Don’t count on it, mind, but the average assailant looking down the barrel of a shotgun is more than likely to decide that there are better places to be.

  • Trish says:

    I live in a state where gun ownership is problematic and involves many layers of background checks and registrations. I’m a military vet trained in gun usage and safety. But husband doesn’t want gun in house. So I hide my garden behind tall wood fence and don’t tell anyone about any stockpiles. I also keep weighted baseball bat handy and hefty dog who’d give her life to protect me. How many kinds of stupid was the guy you described telling his neighbors he had something they’d want to steal???

    1. Trish, YES! That guy was super stupid. Now I know if troubled times come, I know what his intentions are. Whew, it is so sad this is such a common ‘strategy’ though.

  • Leslie Parsons says:

    According to Stewart Rhodes, of Oath Keepers, people of this mentality will be cleared out within two weeks, by even a lightly armed population. That cowardly shopkeeper may not feel so aggressive, when he has to face off the sheriff and several angry “Daddies and Mommies”. Here’s another Texas custom…… “Bring it!”

    1. Malcolm J says:


  • Very good blog you have here but I was wondering if you knew of any message boards that cover the same topics talked about in this article?

    I’d really like to be a part of community where I can get suggestions from other experienced individuals that share
    the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know.

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