Archive for December 17th, 2012

Preppers Under Attack, Part 2

“All this prepping, it gives people an identity, a group to belong to. But it definitely is emerging as the ‘new kid on the block’ as far as cults go.”

- Dr. Peter Behrens, Penn State-Lehigh Valley professor

Last Friday night, I blogged that it seems to me “preppers” are coming under increasing attack these days.

Funny how things can change so dramatically in just a few days, as “seems” is now a significant understatement in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings.

But before I talk more about that horrific incident and its possibly-implied “relationship” to prepping, I want to discuss a recent piece I came across on the Nazareth, Pennsylvania Patch website. On December 13, Elizabeth Rich wrote about preppers/survivalists and said:

According to Dr. Peter Behrens, preppers are buying into a cult.

Dr. Behrens, a Penn State-Lehigh Valley professor who specializes in the history of psychology, abnormal psychology and personality psychology, says that the most recent form of Doomsday preparations have all the earmarks of an active, recruiting cult.

“From a psychological perspective [Doomsday prepping] is bizarre. Members spend so much time and energy readying for the end of the world. Prepping is just people trying to control what is beyond their control.”

Dr. Behrens believes that clusters of preppers and the movement as a whole has all the markings of a cult.

“I think this is just a modern iteration of the phenomenon of people believing that the end is coming in their lifetime. That idea is so selfish, so self-centered, so narcissistic. It’s mind control.”

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Unlike Valerie Lucus-McEwen and her concerns about the preppers featured on the National Geographic Channel TV show, according to Rich, Dr. Behrens attacks the prepping movement as a whole. It having all the markings of a cult.

A cult, huh? Would that make Doomsday Preppers evaluators Practical Preppers their Grand Poobahs then? And could National Geographic Channel now claim non-profit status on their taxes for spreading “the word” via the Doomsday Preppers TV show? Of course a uniform will be needed. Try this one on for size.

(Editor’s warning: video could be offensive to some)

Since I completed the first draft of this post, I’ve come across two more web articles that don’t paint the modern survivalist movement in a positive light.

In fact, some might argue they’re attempting to connect prepping with the Sandy Hook school shootings.

From The Telegraph (UK) website yesterday:

Connecticut school shooting: Adam Lanza’s mother was preparing for disaster

The mother of the gunman who killed 20 children and seven adults in America’s worst school massacre, was a gun-proud “survivalist” preparing for economic collapse, it has emerged.

Nancy Lanza, whose gun collection was raided by her son Adam for Friday’s massacre at Sandy Hook school, was part of the “prepper” movement, which urges readiness for social chaos by hoarding supplies and training with weapons.

“She prepared for the worst,” her sister-in-law Marsha Lanza told reporters. “Last time we visited her in person, we talked about prepping – are you ready for what could happen down the line, when the economy collapses?”

And then there’s this from The Independent (UK) site this morning:

Mother of Sandy Hook school gunman Adam Lanza was a ‘prepper’ survivalist preparing for economic and social collapse, say reports

Friends and family have portrayed Mrs Lanza as a paranoid ‘survivalist’ who believed the world was on the brink of violent collapse.

Yep. Undoubtedly, preppers are under attack these days.

Sources:

Rich, Elizabeth. “Are Doomsday Preppers a Cult? A Lehigh Valley Professor Says Yes.” NazarethPatch. 13 Dec. 2012. (http://nazareth.patch.com/articles/are-doomsday-preppers-a-cult-this-professor-says-yes-7da6a028). 17 Dec. 2012.

Foster, Peter and Swaine, John. “Connecticut school shooting: Adam Lanza’s mother was preparing for disaster.” The Telegraph. 16 Dec. 2012. (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/9749217/Connecticut-school-shooting-Adam-Lanzas-mother-was-preparing-for-disaster.html). 17 Dec. 2012.

Williams, Rob. “Mother of Sandy Hook school gunman Adam Lanza was a ‘prepper’ survivalist preparing for economic and social collapse, say reports.” The Independent. 17 Dec. 2012. (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/mother-of-sandy-hook-school-gunman-adam-lanza-was-a-prepper-survivalist-preparing-for-economic-and-social-collapse-say-reports-8422298.html). 17 Dec. 2012.

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Democrats To Push Gun Ban On First Day Of New Congress

“In the coming weeks, I will use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens- from law enforcement to mental health professionals to parents and educators- in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this.”

-U.S. President Barack Obama at a prayer vigil in Newtown, Connecticut, last night

A person who’s only just tuned-in to U.S. current events in the last week or two would probably have a pretty good idea of where the country looks to be heading:

More attacks on religion, more drugs, more government regulation, more government spending (and waste), more taxes.

Oh, add more gun “control” to that list. In the form of a gun ban, no less.

Amanda Sakuma reported on the MSNBC TV web site Sunday:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, said on Meet the Press Sunday morning that she would introduce an assault weapons ban on the first day of the next Congress. “It’s a first-day bill I’m going to introduce in the Senate and the same bill will be introduced in the House, a bill to ban assault weapons,” Feinstein said. “It will ban the sale, the transfer, the importation and the possession–not retroactively but prospectively–and it will ban the same for big clips, drums or strips of more than 10 bullets.”

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

Another top Democrat in the Senate discussed what’s hoped to be accomplished with up-and-coming gun control legislation. Sakuma added:

Feinstein’s Democratic colleague, New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, said on CBS’ Face the Nation that the U.S. had finally reached “tipping point where we can actually get something done.” Schumer outlined what he said were the top three areas that Congress will focus on with legislation.

“One is to ban assault weapons, try and reinstate the assault weapons bans,” he said Sunday. “Second is to limit the size of clips to maybe no more than 10 bullets per clip, and third is to make it harder for mentally unstable people to get guns.”

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

“Third is to make it harder for mentally unstable people to get guns.”

I can’t help but wonder if gun owners who’ve ever seen a shrink or veterans who’ve been diagnosed with anxiety disorders like PTSD wouldn’t be affected by this. That’s one way of wrestling a lot of guns away from the masses (in the politicians’ minds, at least).

Meanwhile, at the White House, Gary Fields and Laura Meckler reported on the Wall Street Journal website last night:

President Barack Obama is also likely to propose gun-policy changes, according to two administration officials

The White House is looking at various options, and the scope and details of the president’s approach aren’t clear. One possibility likely to be considered is a ban on high-capacity magazines, the devices attached to firearms that store large numbers of bullets and reload them rapidly…

No White House proposal is imminent, and it remains to be seen whether it would be legislative or administrative and how hard the president would push for any legislative initiative.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

“Administrative.” As in Executive Order? Time will tell.

Regardless of the horrific event that took place in Newtown last week, the push for more gun control- and a gun ban- by the Democratic Party should come as no surprise to regular Survival And Prosperity readers. Back on September 6, 2012, I noted that the Democratic Party’s 2012 National Platform approved at the Democratic National Convention included talk of “reinstating the assault weapons ban and closing the gun show loophole.” And on October 17, 2012, I blogged about President Obama announcing at the second presidential debate:

But I also share your belief that weapons that were designed for soldiers in war theaters don’t belong on our streets. And so what I’m trying to do is to get a broader conversation about how do we reduce the violence generally. Part of it is seeing if we can get an assault weapons ban reintroduced, but part of it is also looking at other sources of the violence, because frankly, in my hometown of Chicago, there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns.

(Editor’s note: Italics added for emphasis)

That remark by Obama about “looking at other sources of the violence” and “handguns” have left some to speculate these firearms are also in the cross-hairs of Democrats.

I live at “ground zero” of gun control (Chicago, Cook County, Illinois). And plenty of you know just how well that’s working out as it’s probably only a matter of days before the city reaches 500 “official” murders for the year. By the way, Connecticut has some pretty strict gun control laws as well. Henry D’Andrea wrote on the Washington Times website Sunday:

Connecticut has some of the strictest laws in the nation. To obtain a gun there, you must be 21. You must apply for a local permit with the town’s police chief and be fingerprinted for a state and federal background check. The process includes a 14-day waiting period, and the state requires a gun safety course for anyone who purchases a handgun.

The shooter in Connecticut wasn’t eligible to own a gun, as he wasn’t 21. He stole the weapons from his mother, who legally obtained them.

Plus, I understand the state already has an assault “weapons” ban on their books.

According to the National Rifle Association, there are already more than 20,000 gun laws in the United States.

With more to come, if Democrats get their way.

Sources:

Sakuma, Amanda. “Dems promise: First day of new Congress, a new gun law.” MSNBC TV. 16 Dec. 2012. (http://tv.msnbc.com/2012/12/16/dems-promise-first-day-of-new-congress-a-new-gun-law/). 17 Dec. 2012.

Fields, Gary and Meckler, Laura. “New Calls for Gun Limits.” Wall Street Journal. 16 Dec. 2012. (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324677204578183781498008140.html). 17 Dec. 2012.

D’Andrea, Henry. “Sandy Hook: Gun control wouldn’t have stopped it.” Washington Times. 16 Dec. 2012. (http://communities.washingtontimes.com/neighborhood/conscience-conservative/2012/dec/16/why-gun-control-wouldnt-have-prevented-connecticut/). 17 Dec. 2012.

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Quote For The Week

You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.

-Rahm Emanuel, then-chief of staff for then-President-elect Barack Obama, Wall Street Journal CEO Council, November 19, 2008


“Rahm Emanuel Says Never Let A Good Crisis Go To Waste”
YouTube Video

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Christopher E. Hill, Editor
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