Saturday, March 16, 2019

Rethinking Survival for Modern Times

Much of the prepper and survivalist movement revolves around wilderness survival and bushcraft skills (what used to be known as camping). Virtually every episode of every survivalist-type TV show depicts these skills. These are useful skills to learn. However, most modern survival situations won't see us stuck on a deserted island or lost in a jungle. We are much more likely to face survival situations that require different skill sets.

Modern Survival Situations:
  • Identity Theft
  • Cyber Threats
  • Violent Crime
  • Active Shooter Situations
  • Civil Unrest, including Riots & Looting
  • Terrorism
  • Epidemics & Pandemics
  • Recession, Job Loss, High Inflation, and Economic Turmoil
  • Loss of Freedoms & Privacy (via political correctness, "hate speech" laws, Big Tech censorship & data mining, etc.).
  • Political Turmoil & Police State Actions 
Knowing how to build an emergency shelter or start a fire in the rain probably won't do you much good in most of those scenarios. Not that there is anything wrong with those skills. They can be useful and are worth learning. But there are many other skills that you should also learn, and that may prove even more valuable to you than your primitive fishing skills. 

Modern Survival Skills

Modern survival starts with awareness of potential problems and developing self-reliance (my recent article, The Two Keys to Preparedness, is on this subject). Awareness requires us to take an honest look at the dangers of the world around us, and not just adopt the idea that "nothing really bad will ever happen, and even if it does, that is why we have a government," an attitude so common among most Americans today.

Self-reliance is an attitude of responsibility and accountability. It is up to us to take care of ourselves and our families - not society, the government, public schools, or any other "authorities." It is our duty to watch out for life's potential pitfalls, and to take proactive steps ahead of time to prevent or survive those pitfalls. 

Speaking of awareness: although its been out for ten years now, Fernando Aguirre's book The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse is based on the realities that happened during Argentina's economic collapse in the early 2000s, and offers many clues as to what may happen in America at some point. In it you won't find tips on finding wild edibles, but will learn pointers such as why safe-deposit boxes may not be a good idea. After the banks reopened in Argentina, customers found that their safe deposit boxes had been cleared out of valuables by the government and/or corrupt bank management - and the contents of safe deposit boxes are NOT insured in Argentina, or in America for that matter. If you haven't read his book, I highly recommend you read it. If you have read it, it will be a good idea to go back and re-read it. 

Building on the foundation of awareness and self-reliance, there are many other useful skills for modern survival scenarios:
These are just a few of the skills that may prove very useful in a variety of modern survival situations. Leave your suggest skills in the comments section below.
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Thursday, March 14, 2019

Continuing Genocide of Christians in Nigeria Goes Unreported

Muslim Group Boko Haram Attacks Christian Village, Destroys Church in Latest Attack

03/14/2019  – International Christian Concern (ICC), a Christian human rights organization, is reporting that earlier today, around 6:00 a.m. local time, Boko Haram insurgents launched an attack on Ngurhlavu village of Lassa in Askira-Uba local council area of southern Borno State in Nigeria. Most of the villagers were able to flee into the bush, but the insurgents burned down six homes, destroyed the EYN Church (Church of the Brethren), killed one person, and abducted two sisters, Stella Ibrahim and Plungwa Ibrahim.

The attack by Boko Harem, a Muslim militant group, comes on the heels of an attack by Fulani militants in northern Nigeria in which at least 20 people were killed with machetes and guns. According to WorldWatch Monitor, "The Fulani were early adopters of Islam, participating in holy wars, or jihads, in the 16th Century that established them as a dominant social and economic force in Western Africa." Today, the Fulani continue to wage "holy wars" against Christians and other non-believers in Western Africa. 

Is it really genocide?

Since the Muslim genocide against Christians in Nigeria is ignored by the mainstream media in America and Europe, some may doubt that a real genocide is occurring. However, consider this fact reported by ICC on their website: "Radical Islamic militant groups such as Boko Haram and Fulani militants have decimated Christian communities throughout northern Nigeria. In the last 18 years, an estimated 50,000 to 70,000 Christians have been murdered by these groups, while another 2 million people have been displaced." Countless others have been injured. And the genocide is only increasing

The Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), compiled data for 2018 on the ongoing genocide of Christians in Nigeria. ACLED reported that approximately 1,930 brutal deaths were attributed to Fulani militants in 2018. In addition, Boko Haram was responsible for at least another 550 deaths according to records mainstained by TheReligionofPeace.com (TROP), bringing the total number murdered in the name of Islam in Nigeria in 2018 to at least 2,480. This was a sharp increase (over 25%) from the 1,900 total people killed in 2017 by both Boko Haram and Fulani militants (both groups are Muslim).

Additional Details of This Morning's Attack

Recalling this morning's attack, a senior executive of the EYN Church, who wished to remain anonymous, said that their local pastor called around 6:00 a.m. to report the attack. He shared, “I could hear desperation in his voice, just coming out of the bush.  His voice sounded completely demoralized as he was saying only God… We don’t know what else to do! There’s no security presence here.” The insurgents dropped a concealed improvised explosive device which a church member named Avi Lassa stepped on. Avi was killed on the spot.

Lamenting the spate of repeated, violent attacks, the senior church leader said, “These frequent attacks on churches and [their] members are really weighing us down. These attacks seem to be escalating soon after the elections.” Nigeria’s presidential elections took place in late February, but has seen violence even in the build-up to Election Day.

The leader said that members of the EYN Church in the village of Gwandang were attacked on February 2, 2019. This was shortly followed by another set of attacks in the village of Paya-Bulguma on February 7 and 21, during which 26 houses were burned down, large quantities of food supplies were destroyed, and motorbikes and other valuables were stolen or destroyed.  A seven-year-old boy was also abducted and has not been heard from since.


Sources: 1) Press release dated 3-14-2019 by International Christian Concern. 2) Article Who are the Fulani? by WorldWatch Monitor. 3) Additional information from the Persecution.org website. 4) Statistics from the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) and from 5) http://thereligionofpeace.com/ (TROP).
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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Nigeria: Muslim Fulani Militants Kill Over 20 using Machetes and Guns

The following is an unedited press release from International Christian Concern (ICC). You can visit their website at https://www.persecution.org/ for more on Christian persecution around the world.

03/11/2019 Washington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on the morning of March 4, 2019, Fulani militants attacked Tse-Tema Dula, Tse-Ugor, and Tse-Jabu villages of Mbacohon area in Gwer West Local Council area of Benue State. According to ICC’s local sources, 23 people were killed. Confirming the attacks, Reuben, a member of the Gwer West legislative council, said, “It was bad. They killed over 20 people. Some were killed by gunshots and some by machete hacks!” While speaking of the aftermath for those who survived, Reuben lamented, “The displaced persons are scattered all over, some in Naka, the Local Government headquarters.

Three days after the village attacks, the militants again launched another attack at Tse-Ikyo Mke, Mbapupur community in the same Local Council area. This time, three people were killed.  Commenting on this attack, a local pastor named Reverend Ajoh shared, “Even today, they attacked. One of my members came to report that his father was killed, and another member said his son-in-law was also killed.” All three of the victims, Stephen Uper, Kwaghkunda Ngyeegh, and Denis Iorundu, were married with children.

The communities in Benue State are predominantly agrarian. The farming communities have suffered several years of violent confrontation by nomadic herdsmen who prefer open-grazing cattle breeding, a practice that has resulted in instances of destruction of farmland. As an approach to a solution, the state government enacted legislation providing for ranching instead of open-grazing, which took effect on May 22, 2017. Shortly after this law was implemented, attacks worsened for several months, culminating in more than 70 people being killed in early January 2018.

The law has caused some of the herdsmen to claim that it was deliberately aimed at upturning their generational lifestyle and culture of nomadic cattle breeding, as well as a deliberate attempt to expel them from the state and deny them their constitutional right of freedom of movement. However, Taraba State, which shares a boundary with Benue, has also instituted a similar law, given the years of violence between the Christian farmers and Fulani militants.

Until this incident, the situation had been relatively calm in Benue State for almost a year, and the majority of citizens were hopeful that the peace could be sustained. But with the resurgence of attacks, some local community leaders now believe that the Fulani militants likely refrained from confrontation to allow for a peaceful presidential election, having shown support for their kinsman President Buhari. According to a local source, “Before the presidential election, they moved away, but they are now returning in their hundreds. They don’t like the current governor, and don’t want him to return, so they would want to disrupt the state elections. Buhari has not been happy with him because he refused to cede land for ‘cattle colonies.’

A senior aide in the Palace of the Tor Tiv, the paramount ruler over the Tiv tribe, confirmed the attacks, saying, “Recently, they (herdsmen’s militia) resumed attacking simultaneously in three areas now that their man has won the presidential election.” He added, “Some are still missing in the bush and the search is ongoing.” He further disclosed that security reinforcements have been sent to the affected areas. Expressing faith for divine intervention, Pastor Ajoh said, “The Church in Benue is praying and we know that our God will never disappoint us!
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Friday, March 8, 2019

The Two Keys to Preparedness

There are a lot of different aspects to preparedness - food, water, shelter, first aid & medical, sanitation & hygiene, and guns & ammo, just to name a few. But, in my opinion, there are two keys to preparedness, upon which everything else depends. The two keys to preparedness are 1) Awareness and 2) Self-Reliance.

1) Awareness - The first key is awareness, because without awareness, you will never even begin to prepare. Let's face it, most people just go about living their lives as if nothing bad will ever happen. They simply don't want to think about it (too depressing, too scary), or don't want to confront unpleasant possibilities (too hard). If they had a motto, it would be "Ignorance is Bliss." They just want to go through life playing Doodle Jump on their IPhone (until something bad happens that their not prepared for, and they are left wondering when the government help will get there.)

I'm going to assume, since you are reading this article, that you are at least somewhat aware, putting you ahead of 80% of your fellow citizens. But you may know others who aren't awake. You may have even tried to talk to them and wake them up. Most likely, you failed, They simply don't want to here it. But don't give up. There is still hope. Here are some tips for talking to them about preparedness without upsetting them or turning them off to the subject.

Here's what not to do:

   1- Avoid too much doom-and-gloom.
   2- Avoid jargon. acronyms and "military" talk.
   3- Avoid politics as much as possible.
   4- Put away the tin-foil hat.
   5- Don't nag. 


Here is what to do:

   1- Adopt a conversational tone.
   2- Emphasize building security and safety.
   3- Use personal experiences & real-life events.
   4- Remain calm.
   5- Use humor.


Still having trouble getting a spouse or friend to "wake up" to the potential dangers all around us and the need to prepare for those dangers? Survivor Jane has written a wonderful book that explains things in a non-threatening, non-agressive, non-paranoid, non-technical, and non-intimadating way: What Could Possibly Go Wrong??? How To Go From Completely Clueless To Totally Prepared.


2) Self-Reliance - One of my favorite subjects, and I've written a number of articles on it. My take on self-reliance boils down to these points:
  1. Assume responsibility for your own life. 
  2. Take the blame for your own life.
  3. Be informed. 
  4. Know where your going.
  5. Make your own decisions.
  6. Learn skills.
  7. Gain experience.
See my article What Exactly is Self-Reliance? for a deeper look at these seven points.

Self-reliance doesn't come naturally, anymore. It isn't taught in our schools, nor is it encouraged in our pop culture. In fact, the opposite is true. Personal responsibility and accountability are not politically correct virtues, and if you bring it up, you will likely be accused of being unfair at best, or bigoted at worst. Self-reliance is thought of as selfish or anti-social by many folks today, and even is mistrusted by government authorities (they want you reliant on them, not yourself). 

But, self-reliance is not anti-social or selfish. It does not mean shutting yourself off from your friends or community. It certainly doesn't mean heading for the hills and hiding, heavily armed, in a secret compound until after some dread doomsday comes to pass.

If you have ever listened to a flight attendant give emergency instructions, you may have noticed that they tell parents traveling with a child to put the oxygen mask on themselves first, before putting one on their child. The airlines don't say that because they hate children. Instead, they say that because if a parent is to help their child, they must first be able to do so. A parent unconscious from the lack of oxygen will be of absolutely no help to their child.

Likewise, we will be of little help to our family, friends and neighbors, if we are the ones in need of help ourselves. In fact, our own helplessness may make matters much worse for our community. Far from being selfish, building self-reliance may be one of the most generous things you can do. 


The Bottom Line:  If you are aware, and if you have built self-reliance, then you'll most probably will be okay, come what may...
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Hardline Islamic Cleric Takes Control of Iran’s Judiciary

Tim's Note: The following is an unedited press release from International Christian Concern (ICC). The news does not bode well for Iran's religious minorities, including an estimated 350,000 Christians, mostly Armenian, and up to 15,000 Jews. Exact figures on religious minorities in Iran are impossible to get, and estimates vary widely. You can visit the ICC website at https://www.persecution.org/ for more on Christian persecution around the world.


Hardline Islamic Cleric Ebrahim Raisi Sworn in as Judiciary Chief of Iran

03/08/2019 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on March 8, 2019, Ebrahim Raisi was sworn into office as the new Judiciary Chief of Iran’s Islamic Republic. His long anticipated appointment comes with a five-year term, which is approved by Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Raisi’s career trajectory comes at the expense of a long line of serious human rights abuses that have provoked great alarm regarding his new position.

Raisi is a hardline Islamic religious cleric who studied at Qom Seminary and quickly rose through the ranks of Iran’s judiciary. His name first rose to prominence in 1988, when Raisi served on Iran’s notorious death commission which massacred thousands of political prisoners declared to be “apostates of Islam.” He would later serve as a prosecutor, deputy chief justice, and attorney general. He would launch an unsuccessful bid for president in 2017, after which momentum began to build for his current appointment.

Raisi has remained unapologetic for his record of serious human rights abuses. In a 2018 speech, he highlighted his involvement in the 1988 mass killings and said it “was one of the proud achievements of the system.” This is a reflection of the regime’s position that the judiciary exists to safeguard Iran’s Islamist ideology. It is for this reason that many of Iran’s Christians are tried for political crimes and viewed as apostates.

“The human rights violation of religious minorities in Iran would most likely get worse under the leadership of Mr. Ebrahim Raisi as Iran’s new judiciary chief,” worries Mike Ansari from Heart4Iran, an Iranian Christian partnership platform.

His judiciary appointment comes at a time when the regime is under significant pressure from its citizenry, who are increasingly discontent with the government’s hardline view of Islam. One Iranian woman shared with ICC, “I am a Muslim, but I don’t like the way that the government is forcing us to do it.” 

This enforced Islamist pressure on Iran’s citizens has caused an organic interest in Christianity, which the regime views as a national security threat. “As Christianity is growing fast in Iran, the top religious leaders are alarmed… Their strategy is to arrest a few, but publicize their arrest to put fear in the hearts of 1-3 million Christians and make them isolated, fearful, and prisoners in their homes,” explained Dr. Hormoz Shariat of Iran Alive Ministries.

For this reason, Christian persecution in Iran has grown significantly in recent years. Iran is rated as a Tier 1 Country of Particular Concern by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom and number 9 on Open Doors’ World Watch List.

Claire Evans, ICC’s Regional Manager for the Middle East, said, “Although human rights violations have long been the norm in Iran, today’s appointment of Raisi as Judiciary Chief marks the beginning of a worrisome new chapter. Raisi has not only been complicit in violent abuses, he has reveled in them. His new position gives him broad powers to ‘protect’ Iran’s Islamic theocracy, a cause of great concern for all Christians, many of whom converted from Islam. We must keep them, and Iran’s judges, in our prayers.” 
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Monday, March 4, 2019

February death toll is 126, as Muslim genocide against Christians continues in Nigeria

The following is an unedited press release from International Christian Concern (ICC). You can visit their website at https://www.persecution.org/ for more on Christian persecution around the world.

03/04/2019 Washington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) – Boko Haram and Fulani militants continued their brutal campaign of violence throughout Nigeria’s Middle Belt region in February. The uptrend in attacks by Fulani militants has persisted throughout 2019, with the heaviest attacks taking place in Plateau State. This undeclared war has turned Muslims and Christians against each other in a confrontation that threatens the stability of Nigeria. In February, ICC documented at least 60 attacks by Boko Haram and Fulani militants that killed a total of 205 people. Of these, Boko Haram was responsible for 126 deaths, 83 of which were civilians. Fulani militants were responsible for at least 79 deaths.

Persistent ethnic tension, religious differences, and a lack of economic resources inflict suffering in Christian areas as Fulani militants attack defenseless farmers, impoverishing many. Human Rights Watch reported, “Increased frequency of violent conflict has been linked to intense pressures on land because of expansion of commercially cultivated areas, corporate mining activities, and competitive overuse of common resources, such as forests, pastoral rangelands, and water sources, exacerbated by climate change.” As Nigeria’s farmer-herder conflict continues to unleash bloodshed, the humanitarian crisis continues to worsens in the state.

Despite these violent attacks, there have been no major attempts by the Nigerian government to hold the Fulani accountable or disarm them. The recent re-election of President Buhari ensures that the government will remain dormant as the perpetrators continue to inflict suffering in Nigeria. Although Buhari assured Nigerians that Boko Haram would be a “thing of the past” if he were re-elected, there is little confidence that militant groups will be defeated in 2019. The Middle Belt should remain a cause of great concern for all those interested in Nigeria’s growth and stability.

Below are the largest attacks that took place in February:
  1. February 10, 2019: Fulani militants attacked Adara Christian community, killing 11
  2. February 18, 2019: Boko Haram beheads merchants, killing 18
  3. February 20, 2019: Fulani militants attack Benue State, killing 16
According to Global Terrorism Index’s 2018 ranking, Nigeria remains the third “Most Terrorized Country” for the fourth consecutive year. This trend continues to worsen as militants are able to operate freely. Boko Haram and Fulani militants’ brutal campaigns have claimed tens of thousands of lives and displaced millions more in recent years. The Nigerian government and the rest of the world must remember to pray for those affected by the deadly violence taking place in the Middle Belt.
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Sunday, March 3, 2019

Survival Advice: Know Your Location

Bushcraft and wilderness survival skills are useful, and homesteading is one path to self-reliance. But for modern survival, you really need to know your locality - the area(s) where you live. work, shop, and go to church and school. By "know your locality," I mean a lot more than just the geography of where you live, knowing the roads you drive (although that is a small part of it). 


Develop Your Local Knowledge.  

Get to really know really know your locality. Start with the geography, but don't stop there. Learn your way around your city or town, particularly the areas in which you live, work, shop, worship, and go to school. Know not just one way, but several, to get to and from places you frequent.

You need to know where the bad neighborhoods and high crime areas of your town or city are, and how to avoid them. All communities, big or small, have bad areas - places where crime and vice are more common, and where the folks you're going to want to avoid typically hang out. 

You also need to know the people of your locality. Do you know an honest mechanic? A good and dependable plumber? A babysitter you can trust with your kids? Do you know your neighbors? Are there any sex offenders living near you (search online for sex offender registries). 

Do you know your local elected officials? Do you know what their plans are for your city? Do you follow the local news, or maybe listen to a local talk radio show? Get to really know your community and its people. Build a network of people you trust, and who have reason to trust you.

Know your local markets. Chances are you know where the Wal-Marts, Targets, Sam's Clubs, and Home Depots in your area are.  But what about smaller stores, and Mom-and-Pop operations. Over the years, I've found many things at these places that I couldn't find at the Big Box stores, sometimes at real bargain prices. And I've met some wonderful people.

If, like me, you are a prepper on a shoestring budget, it is a good idea to learn the locations of the various flea markets, farmers' markets, salvage stores, thrift shops, and pawn shops in your community. It may also be a good idea to find all your local antique stores, coin and stamp dealers, gun stores. used bookstores, small hardware stores, feed stores, and gardening centers. I'm putting together a notebook of all these places near me, along with notes on what I can find where, owner's names, and so forth. Should we ever experience a period of scarcity of goods, like Venezuela, it will be good to know and be friendly with these folks. 

Know local industry. Are there any factories or  industrial parks near you? Where is your local electricity generated? And how? Any mines in your area? Industry is both a source of employment, and a source of potential problems such as pollution and chemical spills. What opportunities and threats do your local industries pose?


Know several escape routes from your city should bugging-out ever become necessary or even mandatory. Have paper copies of directions and maps, in case GPS & Google Maps are down when you need them. If you are bugging-out on foot, abandoned train tracks may be your best option, rather than trying to hike along congested and dangerous roadways. Most cities and some small towns have many of these, and some have already been turned into greenways and walking/jogging trails. Learn these now. Acquire or make maps, especially of the ones leading out of town. 

Resources for learning about your community include local newspapers and local talk radio stations. Local and state road maps can often be picked up for free at visitor centers, tourism boards, or the local Chamber of Commerce. If not, you can buy them for only a couple of bucks at just about any gas station in town. Your local library should have maps of local infrastructure such as railways, greenways, waterways, sewer systems, gas lines, and power lines. If not there, your local zoning board will have them. Many local libraries also have community bulletin boards. My local library publishes a monthly newsletter which is a great source of information on local programs, events, government meetings, and so forth. However, nothing beats actually getting out in your community, exploring it for yourself, and meeting new people.  
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Friday, March 1, 2019

Navy SEAL Survival Technique

Someone I know recently faced a really bad, scary situation. Without going into details, at a time in which she needed to remain calm and clear-thinking, she panicked and had an anxiety attack. This only made matters worse. Fortunately, some other people were around who kept their heads and things turned out okay. 

She feels bad about panicking, and worries that it will happen again. Next time, others might not be there to help. What can she do prevent another panic attack at a critical moment? I suggest she learn and practice a Navy SEAL technique called Box Breathing.


Navy Seal Technique: Box Breathing

You should practice Box Breathing often under normal conditions so you'll be able to remember the technique under pressure, which won't be as easy as you may think. Instructions for Box Breathing:

  • Inhale deeply for 4 seconds
  • Hold your breath (lungs full) for 4 seconds
  • Exhale for 4 seconds
  • Hold your breath (lungs empty) for 4 seconds
  • Repeat as needed
More than just a psychological trick, there is actual medical science behind this technique. By using it, you are increasing the nitric oxide levels in your blood, increasing your blood flow, and reducing your blood pressure. These are physical changes that will help you regain or remain in control of your emotions.
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Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Orthodox Christians Targeted in Turkey with Vandalism and Threats


Disturbing events from the supposed "modern and moderate" Muslim nation of Turkey

On Sunday, February 23, 2019, threatening graffiti messages were found on the main entrance door of the Armenian Church of the Holy Mother of God (Balat Surp Hreshdagabet) in Istanbul, Turkey. 

According to a statement issued by the Armenian Patriarchate of Constantinople, “There were written racist and hate speeches in both English and Arabic [saying] you are finished!”

Since then, the Greek Orthodox Cemetery at Kadikoy has been vandalized in a similar manner. 
 
The church’s security cameras obtained footage of the incident at the church and the church administration filed a criminal complaint at the Fatih District Police Department. The statement continued, “It is our greatest wish that such events do not happen again and the criminals are punished.” 

Despite the video surveillance footage at the church and eye witnesses to the vandalism at the cemetery, local police seem inclined not to investigate, even dismissing the cemetery vandalism as having "no political cause." and therefore not a hate crime, according to journalist Seyfi Genç, who spoke with Kadikoy police. 

So, without the "political cause" to the cemetery, writing insults or profanity is as free as the police don't even need to take action... Would it be different if it were a Muslim cemetery?" Seyfi Genç comments via Twitter.

The incident has drawn widespread condemnation from across Turkey’s Armenian community, who are frequently harassed and targeted through hate crimes by Turkish Muslims. The Armenian Genocide from 1915-1917, during which at least 1.5 million Armenian Christians were killed by the Islamic Ottoman Empire, continues to haunt those few who remain in modern Turkey, as Islamists view Armenians as an inherent threat to the constitutionally protected status of "Turkishness," which they see as instrinsically Islamic.

A prominent Armenian writer, Murad Mıhçı, shared images of the vandalism on Twitter, saying, “The walls and the door of the Balat Surp Armenian Church. Its entrance we built with the rocks from the historical church in İznik (Nicaea), where the council met. (Now) the church opens one day a year, it is believed to give a remedy to the people. As they say, ‘ARE YOU FINISHED?’ There are no local (Armenian) people left. The ‘New Turkey!’”



Seyfi Genç shared images of the damage to the Greek Orthodox cemetery, on Twitter.  




Garo Paylan, an Armenian Member of Parliament, tweeted, “A hate attack has been carried out against Balat Surp Hreshdagabet Armenian Church. Every year, scores of hate attacks are being carried out against churches and synagogues. Not just the perpetrators, but also the people who are behind them, should be addressed. For the most important part, the politics that produce hate should be ended.”

According to Turkey’s Protestant Churches Association’s 2018 Violence Monitoring Report, hate speech against all Christians has increased significantly within the last year. Christian leaders have raised concerns that the intensity of hate speech is similar to the days preceding the 2007 Zirve Publishing House massacre, sometimes referred to as the missionary massacres.

Claire Evans, ICC’s Regional Manager for the Middle East, said, “Thankfully, no one was hurt during this incident. However, the gravity of the situation cannot be ignored. Armenian Christians have long suffered targeted harassment and violence in Turkey, which drove most to flee. The general increase of hate speech in Turkey directed against Christians sounds the alarm that the environment is increasingly hostile toward non-Muslims. Turkey purports itself to be a secular nation, a country which has turned over a new leaf. If such is true, then those who encourage and commit these hate crimes against Christians must be held accountable before the situation escalates to something worse."

Sources: 1) official statement issued by the Armenian Patriarchate of Constantinople, 2) press release by International Christian Concern (ICC), and 3) information and photos posted to twitter by Murad Mıhçı and Seyfi Genç. 
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Sunday, February 24, 2019

Christian Student in Pakistan Nearly Killed in Stabbing by Muslim Classmates

Tim's Note:  It is "politically incorrect" to say this, but what happened to this Christian student in Pakistan is typical of how Christians are treated by Muslims in Muslim countries. This incident is not at all uncommon or unusual. Christians are, at best, treated as second class citizens with little or no legal rights. Within the religion of Islam, Christians are part of the "kafir" - nonbelievers - a term used directly in the Quran 134 times, and another 250+ times in the Quran in various other grammatical forms. The term "kafir" is sometimes translated as "infidel." 

Kafirs are considered not only religiously wrong, but unacceptable and offensive to God. Because of this status, intolerance, violence, enslavement, and plunder of kafirs by Muslims is often tolerated by Islamic government officials and courts, and very often not even considered "sinful" by most Muslim religious authorities.  

The following press release is from International Christian Concern (ICC). Visit their website at https://www.persecution.org/  


Christian Student in Pakistan Nearly Killed in Stabbing by Muslim Classmate 

International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that a Christian student from Karachi, Pakistan was nearly killed after being stabbed in an attack by Muslim classmates. As is common with attacks by Muslims on Christians, the student’s parents were pressured by the police to not press charges. Yet, the family has declared that they want justice. According to a local human rights defender, this violent incident resulted from unchecked religious intolerance in Pakistan’s educational system.

The incident began on Friday, February 15, when Haroon Irfan, a Christian student at Government Mohammadi School in Karachi, reported that his Muslim classmate, Muhammad Majid, stole and damaged his school notebook. According to the school’s headmaster, Muhammad Aftab, Haroon is known by the nickname “small Einstein” because of his intelligence.

Haroon made a complaint to the teacher and, when the notebook was recovered from Majid’s backpack, he got angry and felt insulted,” Irfan Masih, Haroon’s father, told ICC.

Two days later, on Sunday, February 17, Haroon was attacked by Majid and several other Muslim boys as he was on his way to buy food from a local hotel. “When Haroon was alone on the road, Majid and five others beat Haroon for alleging [Majid] of stealing his notebook and complaining to the teacher,” Irfan explained.

In the course of the attack, the assailants stabbed Haroon in the stomach, damaging his kidney. “The attack was so terrible that Haroon’s kidney was cut into two pieces,” a local Christian activist told ICC.

The assailants fled the scene, leaving Haroon wounded on the ground. When Haroon was discovered, he was rushed to Jinnah Hospital in Karachi where doctors were forced to remove his kidney.

Haroon’s father reported that local police were initially unwilling to register a First Information Report (FIR) regarding the attack on Haroon. According to Irfan, the police pressured him to settle the matter outside of Pakistan’s judicial system.

We are not going into any process of negotiations or forgiveness,” Khursheed Bibi, Haroon’s grandmother, told ICC. “We want justice.

This incident is a continuation of previous incidents of intolerance which we have experienced in schools and colleges,” Ghazala Shafeeq, a local human rights defender, stated on social media. 

Christians feel insecure, therefore authorities must come up with practical steps to ensure their safety and security.

The authorities must also introduce amendments to the educational system to promote religious tolerance,” Shafeeq continued. “If we don’t purify educational institutions and delete the hate material from the textbooks, we are going to damage the next generation.

ICC’s Regional Manager, William Stark, said, “We here at ICC are deeply distressed by the violent attack on Haroon. Our thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family. Religious intolerance and discrimination based on religious identity are widespread in Pakistan. Unfortunately, this is not only present in Pakistan’s educational institutions, it is widely modeled by many teachers and taught by school curriculums. We hope that this attack will lead to justice for Haroon as well as real change to Pakistan’s educational institutions. These institutions should be safe places where students are allowed to receive a proper education regardless of their religious identity.
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Saturday, February 23, 2019

Talkin' Bug-Out Foods

Bug-Out Bags - a favorite topic of discussion among preppers and survivalists. In this article, I want to add my thoughts to the conversation. Specifically, my thoughts on bug-out foods. And, I'll do it in three sections: 1) Foods for the Bug-Out Bag, 2) Extra Food you may be able to take with you, and 3) Hunting, Fishing, and Foraging for Food.

FEMA and most other emergency preparedness experts suggest that our emergency survival packs (bug-out bags) contain enough supplies to last us three-days. Many of us in the survival community have expanded on that to say we need at least a week's worth of supplies, perhaps more. The problem with this is food and water.

Water is not the topic of this article, so let me just say you're not going to be able to carry enough water on you, so include in your bug-out bags the means to collect and treat water (a topic for a future article). 

Food can be a problem because it is bulky, and you only have limited space in your bug-out bag. Its difficult to pack 3 days worth, even moreso an entire week's worth, of MRE's or freeze-dried foods into your bag, along with all you other gear that you need. So remember this: Bugging-out is not a vacation or even a normal camping trip. Its about survival, not fine dining. Don't try to come up with three major meals each day, complete with side dishes and even dessert. You'll be eating for calories, not the fine-dining experience. With that in mind, here is what I am planning to do:

1) Foods for the Bug-Out Bag: In my bug-out bag, you'll find two packs of SOS emergency ration food bars, which form the core of my bug-out bag food supply. This is enough to provide me with 1,200 calories a day for six days, without taking up too much room in my bag. You'll also find a 16 oz jar of peanut butter (just over 2,600 calories for only a pound of weight), several foil packs of salmon (tuna & chicken are also available - I like salmon), a couple of Cliff Bars, and several packs of nuts, seeds, and jerky (these change often since I snack out of my bug-out bag -- to keep things rotated, of course...). I also have a small bag of bullion cubes to make soup with - not much in the way of calories, but will help you feel full. I'm not eating like a king, but I'm definitely not going to starve during that week.

At this point, there may be a couple of folks wanting to point out that my food is not "nutritionally balanced." So what? I'm eating for survival - meaning calories are what is important. I am NOT going to die of a vitamin deficiency eating this way for a week or two, and if I am forced to bug-out, there are more pressing issues to worry about. Besides, its easy enough to throw a small bottle of multi-vitamins into your bag if that is a concern for you.

2) Extra Food: Depending on the circumstances of your bugging-out, you may have time to load more than just your bug-out bgs into your vehicle, including extra food. It is at this point that MRE's and freeze-dried foods start to make sense. A couple of buckets filled with ready-to-eat meals make for a great grab-and-go option. Time-permitting, you can also pack up other food stuffs, such as canned foods, and bags of dried beans and rice. Just remember, if you must abandon your vehicle at some point and go on foot, you won't be able to take this extra stuff with you, just your bug-out-bags.I don't care how strong you are, you won't be able to hike for any distance with a pack on your back, and a bucket of food in each hand.

If you are lucky enough to have a fixed bug-out location, such as a mountain cabin you own or your Great Aunt Ida's house a couple hour's outside the big city, you should pre-position a lot of food and other supplies there. That way you don't have to worry about hauling a bunch of stuff with you.

3) Hunting, Fishing, and Foraging for Food: A lot of folks seem to be planning in providing food for themselves and their family  by hunting, fishing, and foraging while bugging out. I suggest this is going to be a lot harder to do than most folks realize, especially if they are bugging out during late autumn or winter, when pickings will be slim.  I especially am doubtful that they will be able to feed a family of four or five with wire snares.  Even for very experienced trappers, this will be difficult. 

Of course, we may be able to supplement our food somewhat with what we hunt, fish, and forage, but please don't count on those methods. In addition to skill, timing and just plain luck plays a big part. We can develop the skill if we put in the time and effort beforehand, but timing and luck is beyond our control.

That said, in hopes of supplementing my food supplies, I am learning about wild edibles. Which means not just reading a book, but actually going into the field now to find, harvest, cook, and eat those wild edibles.

Since my planned bug-out locations are very near some great fishing areas, I have included a Ronco Pocket Fisherman in my bug-out gear (a Protocol FishermanPlus is another possibility) along with a couple of the YoYo Fish traps. Hopefully, I'll be able to have enough success to have a fish fry once or twice during my bug-out week.  If not, I'm still covered by what is in my bug-out bag. But the fish would be really nice...

Did you miss my last article on why our reputations are important to our survival?  If so, just click the headline: Your Reputation Matters to Your Survival 
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Friday, February 22, 2019

Your Reputation Matters to Your Survival

Are you concerned with your reputation and that of your family? Does integrity, honesty, and fairness mark your dealings with other people? Or do you smirk at such notions as being naive? Sadly, I've known a few preppers over the years that think that way. Far from naive, your reputation will determine your future.

Within the prepping and survival communities, we talk a lot about the stuff we need to survive. We talk about the knowledge and skills we need to survive. We even talk about the attitude we need to survive. All that is important. But there is one thing that is also important that I rarely, if ever, hear talked about: the importance of our reputation to our survival.

When I say "reputation," I don't don't mean what others think of us, but rather what they think about us. After all, we shouldn't care about what others think of us (except for God and maybe our spouse). But what others think about us, our reputation, does matter. 

Here's the difference: What others think of us is based on their feelings, and those feelings may have nothing to do with us. If someone doesn't like me because I am a committed Christian, for example, their dislike of me is based in their feelings about Christianity, not me. I have no control over that, and therefore shouldn't worry about if they like me or not. 

On the other hand, our reputations are grounded in what we do and say, and we do have control over that. So, if someone doesn't like me because I once cheated them in a business deal, then their dislike for me is based on my actions, not their feelings. I have earned a bad reputation.

Our reputations are important before a disaster.  Our reputation, that we have earned through our words and actions, does have a lot to do with our success, or lack thereof, in life. It will affect our business dealings, our career, our personal relationships, and most other areas of our life. Ultimately, it will affect the opportunities we have, the money we make, and more importantly the kind of people we have in our lives.These things, in turn, can have a large impact in what preparations we can make for the future. Our reputation will definitely impact our ability to form community.

Our reputations are important during a disaster. Imagine a grid-down scenario - let's say after an EMP event. We will be trying to survive in a chaotic world filled with other people. Our reputation will affect the willingness of others to trust us, help us, cooperate with us. Will our neighbors see us as good folk, trustworthy enough to barter with or even to cooperate with for mutual security and assistance? Or will they see us a untrustworthy, even dangerous, and to be avoided?

Our reputations are important after a disaster. At some point the disaster will be over. Law and order will once again be established. A government or some sort of authority will form. And we will be held accountable for our actions during the disaster. Our reputations that we earned during the disaster will affect our place in the newly established society.

Am I being "naive?" Some preppers and survivalists like to brag about the lengths they will go to survive. Some even claim to be willing to do terrible things such as shoot innocent people because they may potentially become a threat at some point, or even to just steal their stuff.  They sneer at anyone objecting to their lack of morality, accusing us of being naive.  I don't think so. In fact, I suggest that they are being naive in thinking that their behavior during the crisis will not have consequences at some point as things begin to calm down. The fact is our actions – good, bad, or indifferent – do have consequences, both immediate and in the future. 

What reputation do we want to have?  I'll answer for myself: I strive for a reputation of integrity, fidelity, competence, and strength. 

      Integrity. More than just honesty, although that is an important part of it, integrity is the unwavering adherence to a moral code. I want people to know that they can trust me to be honest, and that I will always to the right thing. As a Christian, I look to the Bible for that moral code.

     Fidelity. More than just loyalty, although that is a part of it, fidelity is faithfulness is about living up to your obligations and duties. I want people to know that I will keep my word, that I will always do what I say, and they I am dependable and reliable. 

     Competence. Competence is having the knowledge, skills, ability, judgment, and wisdom to be effective in all aspects of life. I want people to know that not only do I intend to live up to my word and obligations, but that I have the ability to do so.

     Strength. Physical strength, as well as arms and armament, can be a part of this, but by strength I am especially referring to strength of character, as well as drive and determination. I want people to know not only do I intend to live up to my word and obligations, and have the ability to do so, but I also have the strength and determination to accomplish any goal.

From a survivalist point-of-view, having a reputation for the first three should make people want me on their side - promoting cooperation, community, assistance. A reputation for the last should make me a less interesting target for the bad guys, or others hoping to take advantage.
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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Leah Sharibu, Kidnapped Teenager, Marks One Year of Captivity for Being a Christian


On February 19, 2018, at 5:30 p.m., Boko Haram entered the town of Dapchi, Nigeria, wearing military uniforms and driving trucks mounted with machine guns. They approached the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College (GGSTC) and ordered more than 100 schoolgirls to enter their trucks. They then disappeared with the girls for more than a month before the girls’ eventual release. Today marks one year since Boko Haram kidnapped those 110 schoolgirls. Of the girls who were abducted, only one remains in captivity. Leah Sharibu was the only Christian among the girls who were taken and she is also the only one still being held captive.

On March 21, 2018, 104 of the kidnapped girls were released back to their families; five died in captivity. Boko Haram militants brought the girls back home on buses, then warned the families against sending their daughters back to school. These same girls then told their families of Leah’s courage and faith in the face of almost certain death.

Prior to returning the abducted girls, the terrorists pulled Leah aside and told her that she would not be allowed to go home unless she recanted her faith. She refused. She told the terrorists that she could not deny Christ. After being held for nearly eight months, Leah again made headlines. On August 27, the terrorist group released a proof of life video of Leah. In the video, she pleads for the government to help her and her family.

Then, on September 17, 2018, Boko Haram killed an aid worker from the Red Cross named Saifura Khorsa. During the execution, the militants said that they would kill another three victims if the Nigerian government did not pay ransoms, including Leah. One month later, on October 16, Boko Haram executed another worker named Hauwa Liman. After her execution, Boko Haram declared that they were going to keep Leah as a “slave for life” because the government had not paid a ransom for her. Since then, there has been little to no communication about Leah from the Buhari administration or Boko Haram.

The Leah Sharibu Foundation stated, “We cannot forget about her today. Petition God, in prayer and fasting, for Leah’s release and freedom of religion.” 

----- This article is from a press release by International Christian Concern (ICC). You can visit their website at   https://www.persecution.org/  

Christian Pastor in Myanmar Abducted by Arakan Army

Christians in Rakhine State Face Increasing Danger

International Christian Concern (ICC) is reporting that on Wednesday, February 13, Pastor U Thar Tun was taken from his home in Buthidaung township, Rakhine State, by members of the Arakan Army (AA), a Buddhist rebel group. According to his wife, Daw Hla Sein, the insurgent group initially demanded that they leave their home to talk, so the family complied with the orders. However, the insurgents then tied up the pastor and dragged him away. She informed the local authorities and the police are now investigating the abduction.

U Thar Tun, the 50-year-old pastor of Mara Evangelical Church, is from the Myo ethnic group, one of the most common minority groups from Rakhine State, Myanmar. The father of five received his theological education from Mizoram State in India.  He has been serving as a pastor in his church for many years and, although his church could not financially support him, he still takes a leadership role in church activities. He is also involved in local community development.

A colleague from the area told ICC, “He is innocent and actively involved in social and ethnic Myo people activities. He acts with truth and love for the oppressed people and he also protects them. Even though there is only [a] slim chance, I would like to request his immediate release from the people who had taken him. He is a valued member of our community.”

His congregation and fellow Myo people are very concerned about his disappearance. Some locals believe that he will not be coming back.

The fighting between the Burmese Army and the AA resumed last December. AA is a Buddhist rebel group known for its intolerance of other religious groups. A month ago, Pastor Tun Nu from Rakhine State’s Sittwe District was also abducted by the AA and his death was confirmed earlier this month.

Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager, said, “While a lot of attention has been paid to the Rohingya crisis in Rakhine State, it is alarming to see Christian persecution on the rise in the area. We urge the Burmese government to negotiate the release of Pastor U Thar Tun, given that his life is at risk in the hands of the Arakan Army. This evil act cannot be tolerated or ignored.”  

----- This article is from a press release by International Christian Concern (ICC). You can visit their website at   https://www.persecution.org/ 

Ways to Resist the Deep State

Call it the Deep State, or the Political Class, or the Elites, or the Globalists, or whatever else you want.  It is all just different names for various aspects of the same beast. A group of people - powerful, wealthy, influential - who want to fundamentally change (hmmm... where have we heard that phrase before) America and Western Civilization. A change that will leave them permanently at the top, above the laws and struggles that the rest of us face, with a tightly-controlled underclass without any real freedom or economic opportunity. 

They want an end to any real borders and the idea of national sovereignty, which requires an end to patriotism. They want ultimate control of the economy, which means an end to private property rights and the rights of inheritance (except for themselves, of course, and they do write the laws, installing loopholes for their accountants and lawyers to use). They also want an end to cash, preferring a cashless, digital system to better monitor and control the populace. They also want to be unfettered by morality, thus desire to end traditional Christianity, as well as traditional family and gender roles. Besides, they see both the Church and the family unit as competition to their desired One World controlled by them.

One only has to pay attention to current events, as well as historical trends over the last few decades to see their plan slowly working out. The question is How do we stop their plans? How do way resist? 

Get out of the system and build self-reliance. 

The more we are part of the system, the more control they have over us, and the less ability we have to resist their plans. Many of us are already afraid to speak out. We are afraid of being labeled as racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamopobic, or otherwise a "hater," and having to face the possible consequences such as losing our reputations, our jobs, our businesses, or even our friends and family. Political correctness isn't about wanting people to be nice or polite to each other, it is about intimidation. Do what we say. Think as we want you to think. Or we will destroy you.   

How do we get out of the system? Getting entirely out of the system will be extremely difficult, if not impossible. But we can extricate ourselves from much of the system, if we are willing to do the hard work and sacrifice to do so. I've written about this before, but here is a recap:
  • Homeschooling is better than parochial & private schools is better than public schools. 
  • Working for yourself is better than working for a small business is better than working for a large corporation or the government.
  • Owning out-right is better than paying a mortgage is better than renting.
  • A credit union is better than a small regional bank is better than a big national bank. 
  • Paying cash is better than a credit card.
  • Going all cash & barter is best of all, but probably impossible in practical terms.
  • Taking care of your health is better than needing a hospital.
  • Entertaining ourselves (reading, family game night, hosting a bar-b-que, going bowling, going fishing, etc.) is better than relying on TV, the movies, and pop culture.
  • Living in a small rural community is better than living in a city is better than living in a mega-city.
And the list could go on and on. Its not easy getting out of the system, and may be impossible to do so completely, but shed yourself of as much of the system as you can. 

Become much more self-reliant. Be able to think for yourself, and do for yourself as much as possible. The more self-reliant you and your family are, the less you will be affected by what is coming, and the more you'll be able to resist. Do everything you can to build as much self-reliance as you can while there is still time. 

Thinking for yourself means uncluttering your mind of all the rubbish coming out of the mainstream media, pop culture, and academia. Turn off CNN and the late-night comedians. Tune out much of the current pop culture. Explore the alt-media, but don't just blindly accept what their pushing. Read a variety of sources, investigate, and think for yourself. Ask yourself questions: Does this really make sense? Is it logical? Does it fit what I already know to be true? Does it give facts that I can check, or is it just speculation? 

Self-reliance is also being able to do for yourself. Take responsibility for your own life. Don't sit around waiting for others, or the government, to do things for you. Get informed. Make your own decisions. Learn skills. Gain experience. (You may be interested in a previous article I wrote: What is Self-Reliance?)

Preparedness is a part of self-reliance. Yeah, I know. Being a prepper has gone out-of-style the last few years. Many preppers took vacations from prepping after Trump won. Others have been intimidated away from prepping and survivalism by the media's constant portrayal of us as paranoid nut-jobs (and potentially dangerous). But being prepared for life's emergencies, be it a house fire, an unexpected job loss, a recession, or even a war, is a major part of self-reliance. Get back to prepping.  Or get started for the first time if you are not one.  Check out my article A quick, no frills, down & dirty guide to preparing for the End for an outline of basic preparedness. Looking for more prepper & survivalist articles, check the archives of this website and check out PrepperWebsite.com for daily updated links.

Privacy is paramount. The more I study what is going on, the more I realize the importance of privacy, and how difficult it is to guard. Don't fall for the stupidity of "only bad guys have to worry about privacy." Think about and take steps to protect your privacy, both online and in real life.

How To Resist?  The best way to resist is to the the opposite of what they want. 
  • They want opens border, so fight for secure borders and controlled immigration.
  • They want to end national sovereignty, so fight for national sovereignty and a strong military. 
  • They want to ridicule and belittle patriotism, so be patriotic, and encourage others to be patriotic, also.
  • They want to end private property rights, so fight for laws protecting private property rights.
  • They want to restrict inheritance, so fight to end restrictions and taxation on inheritance.
  • They want to end traditional Christianity, so be a traditional, Bible-believing Christian, and get out of liberal/progressive churches.
  • They want to end the traditional family, so fight for it. 
  • They want to end traditional ideas of gender, so teach your children to be Real Men and Real Women.

Other Ideas for Resisting:
  • Elections matter, even if it is to only buy time, so get informed and vote! 
  • Control of the Judiciary is critical. Judgeships matter deeply.
  • Be very active in local politics and talk to local officials. Local efforts, where our "leaders" must deal with us face-to-face, can be very effective.
  • Influence your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and fellow church members. Don't be cowed by political correctness.
  • Make use of Alt-Media (Whatfinger News, Voice of Europe, Breitbart, PrepperWebsite's AltNews Hub, The Liberty Mill, etc.) to stay informed. But always think for yourself.   
  • Don't be intimidated by the Big Tech social media companies. See my article Preparing for Big Tech Censorship for more on this subject.
  • Men, lead your family and teach your children. Don't give in to worldly ways, modern sensibilities, and political correctness.
  • Be especially wary of polices and laws that can be used as a "backdoor" to limit or take away our Freedoms. Hate speech laws allow the government to define "hate" however they wish. School anti-bullying policies more often are used to prevent your children from wearing a patriotic shirt ("bullying" immigrants) rather than stopping a real bully from taking your kid's lunch money. Red Flags laws have "gun confiscation" written all over them, especially in light of the APA's recent willingness to define traditional masculine traits as harmful.

What about armed resistance? I occasionally hear some talk about this, so let me quickly address it now. I don't believe we are there yet. Armed resistance is an absolute last resort, extremely difficult with deadly consequences. Most of us are truly not prepared to become guerrilla fighters, and likely would only get ourselves and our families killed. And lone wolf attacks accomplish nothing. In fact, they have the opposite of the desired effect, damaging their cause, and giving the government an excuse for yet more restrictions to our freedoms. 

I strongly believe in the right to self-defense, but I also strongly reject the unprovoked or unnecessary use of violence to achieve our goals. Concentrate instead on resisting in safer and more effective ways.

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