Monday, January 22, 2024

Urban Survival - Dealing with Government Intrusiveness

By Tim Gamble

A big problem for urban survivalists is government intrusiveness (as well as that of landlords and homeowners associations and other self-appointed authorities). No one has a moral right to prevent you from being self-reliant, practicing self-defense, or being prepared for an emergency. However, many politicians, bureaucrats, and other busybodies think that they should have that right, and in many urban areas they have given themselves the legal ability to do so. 

Local laws and regulations, taxes and fees, zoning restrictions, licensing and permitting procedures, homeowners association rules, and even difficult and intrusive landlords, can heavily impede your preparedness efforts.

Working Around The Impediments

You will have to be clever to work around the impediments they place in your way. Although I would never suggest anyone do anything illegal, there is a saying "Its easier to get forgiveness than permission." You have to obey the laws and rules whenever possible, but you don't have to sacrifice yourself or your family to those laws and rules.  You have to decide where the lines are for yourself.

This is where operational security (OPSEC) comes in - what they don't know, they can't complain about. Don't make your prepper activities obvious. I've written a three part series on OPSEC (Part 1Part 2,
 Part 3) you might want to read. Besides, once the infrastructure breaks down post-SHTF, there will be no one in charge to tell you to take down that clothesline or to not have some "pet" chickens.  Or, if there is anyone in charge, they'll be too involved with real problems to deal with your outlaw garden.  

Choose your battles wisely. Don't make everything a contest of wills between you and the authorities. They have rigged the game in their favor.

Example: Self-Defense
Buddha Beads
If your city has banned guns, don't carry one. Instead, find other ways to defend yourself. Use situational awareness to avoid trouble. Use your local knowledge o avoid bad neighborhoods and dangerous areas. Be a gray man so that you don't stand out or make yourself a target. Take a class in non-lethal self-defense. Take up a martial art. Carry pepper-spray if it is legal in your area. Consider carrying a tactical pen or a self-defense necklace (aka Buddha Beads). Consider carrying a metal baseball bat in your vehicle. Of course a gun is a much better option. The point is that the authorities may be able to limit your options, but they cannot stop you from exercising your right to self-defense. You just have to get a bit clever in how you do it. 

Finally, let me politely suggest this, even though it upsets some people: If you find where you live too restrictive and controlled, consider moving elsewhere. You don't have to move to the deep country if you don't want, but perhaps you can find a less restrictive city or even a small town to your liking.

*** This article is a minor rewrite of an article I wrote in 2018.
The Mini Farming Bible: The Complete Guide to Self-Sufficiency on ¼ Acre - This book, by Brett Markham, contains detailed information on: Composting, Seed Starting, Pest and disease control, Selecting and saving seed, Raising chicken for eggs and raising chicken for meat, Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, parsnips, and other veggies, Weed control, and much more, all geared towards urbanites and suburbanites with small yards of ¼ acre or less!   

1 comment:

  1. Here in Florida, HOAs are very popular. I'll NEVER live in a HOA neighborhood. I have a 7/8 acre lot. Most of the HOAs are 1/4 acre or under, many with zero-lot-line (think homes packed like sardines in a can). I'll pass.
    I like having room for a good sized garden and my chickens. I can practice my archery in the backyard without someone blowing a gasket. My town has zoning laws but nothing really stupid (you can't build a 6-story condo in a residential area.....ok....fine). I can build a backyard bunker (if I want) with 4 visits from a building inspector during construction (floors, walls, electrical, roof) and that's fine with me. I'm not an expert builder and I don't want to build a home-made tomb.


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