Nine Steps to Take Now to Prepare for the Perfect Storm of Civil Unrest

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Note:  This article has been substantially updated and republished.  See 13 Steps to Prepare for Civil Unrest.

13 Steps to Prepared for Civil Unrest

According to an Army field manual “In these modern times, demonstrations, civil unrest, public disorder, and riots happen for a number of reasons. Some of these reasons are economic hardships, social injustices, ethnic differences (leading to oppression), objections to world organizations or certain governments, political grievances, and terrorist acts. An event can be triggered by a single cause or a  combination of causes.”

The manual (FM 3-19.15) further states that “gatherings in protest are recognized rights of any person or group, regardless of where US forces may be operating. This fundamental right is protected under the Constitution of the US.”thisistomorrow2 (Custom)

These are interesting if not downright frightening times.  To all but the most ignorant, government and elected officials have sold out to corporations with deep pockets and hidden agendas.  The tenets of freedom from tyranny are being challenged on a daily basis.  In addition, not a day goes by that a new financial or consumer scam comes in to the public eye, further eroding our trust in a system that was at one time steeped in honor and trust.

In addition to the challenge of a corrupt system of governance, we have massive unemployment and underemployment in all age groups.  Cities, counties and even countries are bankrupt or close to it.  Health care costs are out of control as are prescription drug costs.  The food supply  is being manipulated for the profit of greedy corporations.

Added to all of this dismal and gloomy news is the reality that sustained droughts have destroyed crops and is resulting in the premature slaughter of farm animals due to projected shortages in feed.  And finally, we have an election year where neither mainstream candidate has the guts to speak the truth.

The Perfect Storm is Brewing

In my opinion we are close to the tipping point and close to a perfect storm of civil unrest.  That tipping point is being triggered by the looming food crisis and the November election debacle.  Evidence?  Look around and you will see that we are already seeing unprecedented robberies, shootings and suicides – all of which are signals that all is not well in the homeland.  It only stands to reason that civil unrest including riots, looting and domestic terrorism will be next.

For the sake of argument, let us take a look at recent suicides.  According to some experts, including Eve Meyer, executive director of San Francisco Suicide Prevention, economic despair is common reason for suicide.  In despondency, people feel that they would rather be dead than be homeless.  But what if suicide is not the answer either due to religious reasons or simply due to the overwhelming need for vengeance and revenge against a system that has failed to deliver as promised?

The answer will be protests, crime and domestic terrorism and not necessarily in that order.  After all, when you have nothing to loose, why not strike back?  So what if you crack?  It makes sense that you can risk it all when all is equal to nothing at all.

What happens when there is a perfect storm?  Chaos, plain and simple.  Whether at sea or whether on land, there is no rule book prescribing what will happen next.  In a perfect storm, you may be able to ride the wave to safety and then again, maybe not.Astor_Place_Opera-House_riots_crop (Custom)

Which gets us to the point: how do you prepare when a perfect storm is brewing?  Today I present nine steps for prepping for civil unrest.

Nine Steps to Take Now to Help You Prepare for Civil Unrest

1.  Make sure your basic backup supplies are in order.  This includes adequate food, water and sanitation supplies for at least a two week period and preferably a month or even longer.

2.  Take stock of your first aid kit to insure that you have sufficient medical supplies, remedies and prescription drugs.  For ideas, see the first aid section of this article.

3.  Inventory the security features in your home to determine weaknesses that need to be strengthened.  See the article A Dozen Home Security and Crime Prevention Tips for the Prepper for tips on securing the homestead.

4.  Set  up a personal self defense system.  If you own a firearm, apply for a concealed weapons permit, stock up on ammo and practice shooting at the range.  Invest in pepper sprays, bully clubs, and heavy-duty tactical flashlight that can be used to temporarily blind an assailant.

5.  Form a community of like minded people that will drill together and that will band together for protection and safety during times of chaos.

6.  Stockpile cash in small bills.  In a massive and chaotic riot situation, ATMs and banks are likely to be closed or inoperable.

7.  Accumulate goods for barter.  When the stores are closed – or the supermarket and hardware store shelves are empty – you may need to call on others for the supplies you need but did not anticipate.  Have something to barter.  Spirits (including beer, wine and good old Jack Daniels) are always good choices as as are candles, batteries and food items including fresh eggs and home grown garden vegetables

8.  Don’t forget about children, the elderly and your pets.  In a riot or lock down situation, they may become fearful and panicked.  Stow away some amusements and comfort items for them as well.

9.  Keep a level head and your mouth shut.  If by some chance you are pulled into a police net, the first thing you should do is call a lawyer.  Be courteous and polite and do not resist.  Print out the following and keep it in your wallet and in your car along with your registration:


1. First, ask to call your lawyer.
2. Be courteous; do not resist.
3. Do not consent to search or entry.
4. Do not talk about anything; do not admit OR DENY anything.
5. Ask if you are free to go. If you are, GO.

The ACLU also has a printable card you can download and keep with you: What To Do If You’re Stopped By Police.  For more information, you can also download the booklet Your Rights When Encountering Law Enforcement.

The Final Word

The likelihood of civil unrest in the near future has been underscored by recent actions by FEMA and the rest of the Department of Homeland Security to requisition large stores of emergency food supplies and riot gear.  Although people in the cities will bear the brunt of the unrest, rural communities and remote locations will not be immune as the mobs migrate outward in search of food, supplies and just about anything else they can get their hands on.

The writing is on the wall in plain sight for those that want to see it.  And for those that care not to look?  When the SHTF don’t come knocking on my door because there will be no one there to answer.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

Bargain Bin: Here are some items to consider as you build up your fortress against unruly mobs who are out to get what they can out of anger and frustration.

Holding Your Ground: Preparing for Defense if it All Falls Apart: You NEED this book if you care about defending your homestead.

Sabre Family Home & Property Protection Pepper Spray: This small fire extinguisher-style pepper spray delivers a strong blast covering an entire doorway. Offering extremely practical protection, SABRE provides distance from your threat with its 30 foot range. I like that it includes a wall mount. About $36.

Dorcy LED Wireless Motion Sensor Flood Lite: This light is awesome. I use mine downstairs and when I get up in the middle of the night, it comes on automatically. It is quite unobtrusive (I own two in black) and gives off a ton of light. Runs for a year on 3 D size batteries. About $20.

Security Decals – 4 Pack: Security surveillance camera system warning decals/stickers. Increase security whether you have a system or not -no one will know but you. Less than $10.

Uniden Bearcat 200-Channel Portable Scanner: A hand scanner with ham band for less than $100. Very portable.

Two-Way Radios and Scanners For Dummies: I will say it again. Yes, I love these books for “dummies” even though I actually think I am quite smart.

Motorola FRS/GMRS Two-Way Radios: There are lots of good uses for the these radios. Handy while hiking, traveling, or simply keeping in touch with your partner while out shopping.

Keypad Deadbolt: Need a good strong lock? With this, you will never have to worry about locking yourself out plus, you can secure the deadbolt from inside the house.

Want to help support Backdoor Survival?  Your purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!


Nine Steps to Take Now to Prepare for the Perfect Storm of Civil Unrest — 17 Comments

  1. Gaye, you might not like to hear this, but a nephew of mine is a combat veteran. Now a civilian he tells me that all the prepping supplies will only last for a short time. After that, survival skills have to be employed to stay alive. He and some of his well armed and trained friends plan on searching out people like us. Houses with lights on from a generator, the smell of cooking food, and showing signs of life around the premises, like smoke rising from a chimney, farm animals in pens, etc. The will all be prime targets unfortunately. They will not be interested in forming groups, but may take young females for breeding stock. There is a short movie depicting this after the SHTF event(s). I don’t remember the name of it. We have to plan for this somehow, but I don’t know for sure just how to go about it….. I live alone and have guns, but I can’t hold off a group of 10-12 armed former soldiers.

    • Yikes – are you saying he will become one of the bad guys?

      There is an old TV series (on Netflix streaming as I recall) called The Survivors. It depicts a similar scenario. If you can get your hands on it, it is worth a watch.


  2. There is a book available from Amazon “The End Of The World As We Know It” by James Wesley Rowls. It is on Kindle for $13.99 There is a ton of information in here and may provide some help for surviving the armed gangs that will suddenly appear to loot and ravage. It is well worth the cost if you haven’t already read it. Many other books and survival manuals also.

  3. Hi; Some random thoughts. If you are in the market for an outdoor gas grill get a model that has a side burner. We have used ours only one time. we were in a multi day power outage and it was handy for morning coffee and food prep. Also when the power goes off the house gets very quiet and at night very dark. Do you have any outside solar lighting ? If so bring one or more inside. Remarkable amount of light and they last several hours (or all night). Put them back out to charge the next day. Just yesterday I was out for a little road work, the weather was great, sunny hot, no wind to speak of. as I got back to the house I entered the code for the garage door and it failed. After several attempts I realized the power was out. Well my Bride was still asleep (it was quite early), so I figured I would call the house, as I had a cell phone. We have one of systems with a base phone and several satillite units. Without elec power the system does not function. Our only hard wired phone was operational but far from the bed room. I was able to knock on the window and have Her unlock a door. You have on occasion mentioned that yourself and Hubby have firearms, and training and ammo etc. If (WHEN) the government requires you hand over your arms, Will You ??? ( you don’t have to answer) (just think about it)

  4. Urban Survival gave Backdoor Survival as a source for how to work around the fact that doctors and insurance companies will only let you have a 30 day or 90 day supply of medications you need. I couldn’t find it on your web site. Could you please tell me how to find that information?

      • Thank you, Gaye, for mentioning the fish antibiotics. I went right to a pet supply on line retailer and got my most used (when I need them) for a fraction of the price! Not to mention I am uninsured, so when I do get sick (usually bacterial bronchitis-I’m a dirty smoker) I will have them here, paid for. I sealed them up (in the bottle) in a bag and put them in the freezer-is that the best place to keep them?

        • I live in the Pacific Northwest which is fairly moderate, climate-wise, so I keep my medications in a drawer in the bathroom where they will still dry. I have read that antibiotics can be stored under refrigeration but don’t feel qualified to say for sure that that is the proper storage method. I would think, though, that anyplace cool, dry and and away from light would be okay. Perhaps one of my other readers will have an answer for you.

  5. storing antibiotics, I learned from an old friend(now deceased)
    she was a nurse, her husband a doctor. she said that most, not all meds can be stored in original container, so long as they are still sealed, and kept cool, I wouldnt freeze them, but keep them in the coldest place you can find. if you have items that have been opened, you can vacuum seal them into smaller portions. most things will be still viable for 20 years or more. dont remember which ones actually become dangerous, but antibiotics, pain meds should be ok. I think heart meds tend to go bad. there are many, many health and medical benefits of using apple cider vinegar, and having an aloe vera plant on hand, will be a welcome item. I plan on making my own apple cider vinegar in a month or so, as buying an organic version is expensive. I currently drink it daily for extra fiber, weight loss, controlling blood pressure, and cholesterol. I know this isnt the same topic, but I also plan on canning some water, for medical purposes this fall. hope this helps

  6. it’s no comfort to me to know that I am in Switzerland. I have lived in the States and since I left I have been committed to empower activists of the world with a simple approach, a different prespective on social activism that has been neglected, simply ignored. The more we near to the day where such crisis will unfold, the more I feel like I failed to deliver my message of hope and my simple way to empower all humans in the so called new way of thinking that is so much mentioned. I have no idea how to deliver it to you but I tried in so many ways. All good bloggers are overwhelmed and hard to reach. I feel like in a crowd of people screaming louder and louder telling you all that there IS a simple way out, and that is the vision

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