I have a dear friend whose mother died of skin cancer. Skin cancer, as you undoubtedly know, is one of the most curable cancers there is... if it’s caught early. Otherwise it’s nearly always fatal.
But this wonderful woman, who always had a smile for everyone and radiated sweetness wherever she went, ignored the nagging discolored and painful mole on her thigh. She had a huge – and I mean huge – family history of cancer, and so was naturally scared about developing it herself. What’s tragic is that she ended up acquiring the single most treatable and curable cancer there is.
But she ignored it, told herself it would go away, then (after about a year) determined she would treat it through alternative and unproven means. After a horrible and painful struggle, she finally passed away.
This is a classic case of ignoring something in the hopes it would go away. And here’s the thing:
It never works.
That cavity you’ve ignored won’t go away. Skin cancer won’t go away. The potential for natural or man-made disasters won’t go away. Since none of these things will go away, we need to be vigilant and prepared to handle them in calm, sensible ways.
Had my friend’s mother seen a dermatologist the moment she noticed the discolored mole on her thigh, she could have undergone a minor procedure to remove it, stayed vigilant about any additional moles, and lived for many more years bestowing her sweet smiles on her friends. Instead she lost her life decades earlier than she should have.
It was Ayn Rand who said, “You can ignore reality, but you can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.” Think about it.
Those of us who have become Preppers in the last five years – and believe me, there are millions more now than there were five years go – are doing so because we recognize potential problems on the horizon, and we know ignoring them won’t make them go away. These potential problems can range from economic collapse to a massive solar flare taking down the power grid. Others worry about peak oil or terrorist attacks. Preppers come from all walks of life and embrace enormous numbers of concerns, but we all have one thing in common: we are not ignoring these problems in hopes they’ll go away. Instead we are trying to recognize what the potential ramifications might be, and prepare accordingly.
Ignoring – which remember, shares the same root as ignorance – a problem never makes it go away (duh). The problem persists and/or gets worse, whether we ignore it or not. It’s up to us as responsible individuals to do what we can to make sure our selves and our family will be as safe as possible when the problem comes to a head.
There are a number of factors that contribute to our certainty that something catastrophic is heading our way. The excessive personal debt many individuals labor under; the endless economic recession which may well have already tipped into an economic depression; the poor job market; the inflation affecting the value of our fiat currency; the socialistic big-brother direction our nation seems determined to follow; and most of all, the staggering, unpayable, hideous debt load of our federal and state governments… all contribute to a feeling that our economy isn’t far from a crash. The moral breakdown of society insures that any problems will be magnified by chaos and anarchy.
And that doesn’t even begin to address the chaos affecting other parts of the world that could involve us as well. A collapse of the Euro would not only affect our own financial markets; but if war were to break out in Europe following such a collapse, you can be sure we would be impacted somehow. And let’s not forget the seething hatred the Middle East holds for America.
But so many Americans prefer to sink themselves into the trivial and ignore the serious. We obsess about American Idol and think that because the Hollywood stars look sleek and sexy, all must be right with the world. We dimly note that the price of milk has doubled in the last few years but don’t think about the overall picture. After all, if we ignore such things, maybe the problems will go away.
And then something horrific happens – 9/11 or a stock market crash or a war – and we wonder where that came from and why didn’t we see it coming?
The fact is, very little happens that doesn’t give some sort of advanced warning (with the possible exception of certain natural disasters such as earthquakes). All it takes is vigilance and a determination not to depend wholly on the mainstream media (which tends to filter world and national events to support their agenda) for our news.
Becoming a Prepper means becoming more vigilant about world and national events, and projecting how those events might have a personal impact on our lives. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting we get bogged down with calamity to the point where we can’t function. Rather, I’m suggesting that Preppers can live with much more calmness and peace because they’ve prepared to the best of their ability to withstand chaos and disasters.
Ignorance never solved anything. Ignorance never caused problems to disappear. The only thing ignorance produces is surprise when a calamity hits – rapidly followed by dismay at how it affects us.
But action is the answer. If tracking the financial insecurity in Europe disturbs you, the solution is to take whatever steps are necessary to safeguard your own financial situation. If the potential for urban unrest in your city disturbs you, take steps to lessen your vulnerability. If your region is subject to hurricanes or other regular natural disasters, having the supplies on hand to withstand such disturbances will go a long way toward your piece of mind.
Ignorance can be described as sticking your head in the sand, ostrich-like. But you know what happens when your head is in the sand: your rump is in the air, exposed and vulnerable and waiting to be kicked.
Only when your head is where it should be and your vision is clear and focused do you have the possibility of kicking back at whatever fate brings your way.