Monday, February 7, 2011

Another Reply: Home Invasion in USA‏

Hola Ferfal,

Thank you so very much for your blog and book. It has helped me tremendously.

According to my husband, I became an "obsessive compulsive and amateur expert"
on the Petit case. He was right about this. I would mention this case everytime
that I found out some new detail about it, often during dinnertime. What can I
say, other than that I will use any tactic to prepare my family for what is
slowly but surely going to happen. I was trying to use all of the horrific
details in order to attempt to convince him that at the very least we should
prepare to make our home safer. Since we live in a very "good neighborhood," he
hasn't been much interested in securing our home.

Please don't think that I am in any way placing any blame on the Petit family.
I am not. They are the tragic victims without blame and the convicted criminals
bear all the responsibility and blame for their acts. Personally I believe that
their execution should be swift and not some twenty years from now after they
have exhausted a tremendous amount of appeals at taxpayer expense. And their
executions, as far as I am concerned, should be death by being burned alive in

Regarding the Petit case, you are absolutely right on all your points. Although
this a horrific tragedy for the entire family, there are somethings that we can
all learn from this case. First, the two alleged criminals entered through the
unlocked door of the attached garage. (Make sure that all your doors and windows
are locked every day and night.) They came across a refrigerator that had,
among other things, lots of beer. They sat down and drank about 6 cans of beer
while waiting a few hours so that the entire family would be in their deep
sleep. I'm amazed that they didn't fall asleep themselves in the garage. There
are police crime scene pictures of the beer cans and DNA evidence that they had
the beers. Second, from the garage entry into the house was as simple as
opening another door. Third, the criminals bought fake plastic guns, although
they were realistic enough to fool the victims into thinking that they were
real. Apparently, they had no idea of what realistic fake guns look like. I
believe that most people that have been around guns can tell the difference
between the real and fake ones. Even if people choose to not own guns, and that
is their right to do, they should at least know what the fake ones look like.(
Check out places that sell these realistic guns, Walmart, Dunham's, Dollar
Stores, etc. You'll be surprised at the variety.) The victims didn't have
anything to defend themselves with, such as bats, golf clubs, metal flashlights,
etc at their disposal. (Alot of us have many things lying around in our homes
that can be put in strategic and discrete locations in each of our rooms. Not
every room has to have a hidden Glock with several magazines.) I can only
imagine that when one is awaken in the middle of the night by armed intruders,
the horror and stress level must be unimaginable, however, the family had no
alternative plans of what to do in case of a home invasion. (Even if only one
member escapes immediately after the invasion, they can get help faster.)
Unfortunately it does not appear that they had any back-up systems in place.
(Simple alarms can be installed by homeowners that will trigger a loud sound
outside your home, so that your neighbors can call the cops on you. Even having
your car keys next to you when you go to sleep can help because you can trigger
the car alarm. Alot of people do not park all of their cars in their large
garages.) Mrs Petit was followed home. (Always make sure that you look back
once for every two blocks that you travel. I find that doing this breaks up the
monotony of driving and I can keep an eye on my kids when they think that I'm
simply paranoid about other drivers. Since I am not used to doing this, I have a
small index car on the front passenger seat that says "Look back!" I hope that
someday I can remember to do this automatically without any reminders, just like
a use my seatbelt all the time. I am also driving around using different
roads. This has really helped me to get to know my surrounding neighborhoods.
My children call this "paranoid gas guzzling driving." And always when leaving
any business, I stop, turn around and look to see who is behind me. I also do
the same thing in the parking lot. It it happens that someone is leaving at the
same time that I am, I make sure thay they are not following me.) All of this
is a bit too much of paranoia for my family, however, I continue practicing this
because it want it to be second nature when things get bad and I need to behave
with intelligent and practical paranoia.

If you are ever visiting the Midwest, please email me.It would be great to
meet you in person.

Unfortunately, I am the only prepper in the family. My husband doesn't object
to me prepping, nor does he help me. Sometimes we have arguments because of all
the "stuff" that I have bought. However, I explain to him my reasoning behind
the purchases and no matter how heated the arguments get, I do not back down on
the purchases and goals of prepping. I can only thank God that neither of us
believes in divorce. Unfortunately I am the only member of my family at the gun
range. I practice with a S&W 357 magnum revolver (own), Glocks 17, 19, 34
(rentals) I have a small hand and haven't decided which one is best for me, a
Remington 870 20 gauge pump shotgun (own) and a S&W M&P 15 rifle (rental).
Hopefully, I'll be able to purchase the Glock and S&W M&P 15 with a good scope,
magazines and ammo soon. I have a concealed carry permit from my state. I have
also conditioned myself to stay up until dawn, on some evenings. This is in
case we find ourselves in the situation where it might be necessary. I know
that one family cannot possibly keep a 24 hour surveillance. However, I do
believe that you do what you can. I am also working on a substantial food
storage, have water barrels and filters. My goal is to continue prepping until
there is some kind of a trigger that starts bringing things down. Right now, I
am preparing to purchase some window bars for my home. Needless to say my family
does not approve, however, I remind them that I am the interior and exterior
decorator of our home. From what I have seen on the internet, there are two
types of bars, outside and indoor bars. I would prefer outside bars but no one
in my neighborhood has bars and I'm concerned that they would attract unwanted
attention. Because of this, I am leaning towards buying the indoor window bars.
(Look up goodbarsecurity.com) If you know anything about them, please let me
know. I value your opinion highly. I am not prepared in the area of
prescription medicines. Do you know of any doctors in America who would
prescribe antibiotics, to store, in case they are needed during a collapse or
pandemic? "Will travel for antibiotics." I'm not looking for any pain meds,
only antibiotics.

Once again, thanks for all that you have done for so many of us. I have no
doubt that when you come to America, you will eventually find many of us that
are very grateful for all your advice. I believe that you and your family
already have many friends here.

M in the Midwest

Hi M. Thanks for your email. Experience is the best way to learn, and if its other people´s experience then in my opinion it means we can at least learn from it and avoid it from happening to us, at least improve our odds a bit. Nothing good comes from these horrific events, all smart people can do is learn what they can from them and after taking some action, then yes, hope it never happens to us. Just preferring to look the other way because these events are too painful wont reduce our chances of being next.
You should do what you can to get the family on board, don´t stop trying. A family is a team, and a team is only as strong as its weakest link (group member). Keep trying and you'll eventually see results.
The topic of home security is important and I'll keep posting about it so that people can prepare better and get more ideas.
Search this blog for "antibiotics". Other than a friend doctor or a visit to Mexico, at least until you find a better solution you might want to check out Veterinarian Amoxicilin (for fish) th short story is that its amoxicilin (as well as other anitbiotics) but its legally sold on line if its for veterinarian use. Fish Mox Forte (Amoxicillin) - 500mg 100 Capsules The comments over at Amazon are pretty informative.
Add me to your tweeter and facebook. Its the best way to know if I'm ever near by next time I visit USA and a meeting/dinner/lunch is organized.
Take care!



Anonymous said...

Outstanding post(M from flyover country)and FerFal per usual great.
I have the same problem as you except with my wife,,my grown children are on board because of 'things' that have occurred to friends etc.though not as horrific as the mentioned case...
Never give up,,protect you family above all..
J in SE amerika

The never rules of combat !

Never walk when you can ride !
Never run when you can walk !
Never stand when you can kneel !
Never kneel when you can sit !
Never sit when you can lie down !
Never rest when you can nap !
Never nap when you can sleep !

Anonymous said...

M in the Midwest, Most of us on this site are preppers to one degree or another, and have experienced the same problem as you with family members who are not "on board" with our way of thinking.

That said, I hope you don't mind me giving you my 2 cents on the burglar bars. If you spouse is against it, then I think you should consider his feelings and opt for an invisible alternative: Window film. 3M makes it in three levels of strengths: http://solutions.3m.com/wps/portal/3M/en_US/Window_Film/Solutions/Markets-Products/Commercial/Safety-Security_Window_Films/

Anonymous said...

hey M,

don't get discouraged. my wife thinks i'm being paranoid, too, but i keep going with my education / prepping activities. every chance i get, i try and get her to read a book that has influenced my thinking, so she can try and see my perspective. my latest attempt is James Gilligan's "Violence: Our Deadly Epidemic and its Causes", because it's written by a psychiatrist who worked in the New York state prison system for over a decade. he's reasonable and rational, so you might be able to get your husband to read this book, since there's no real overt prepping / survival bias to the text.

frankly, this is the book that made me realize that as nice as i am, and as nice as my friends are, there are a lot of seriously messed up people out there, and you need to take steps to protect your family from these kinds of people...people who kill with no remorse.

good luck, and no matter what, don't give up on your family, no matter how stubborn or recalcitrant they seem to be. i often tell my wife that lessons at the range, working out to keep in shape, eating right, and stocking up are all much more productive paranoia treatments than going to a shrink and taking pills for my paranioa. she usually agrees. :)

good luck!

s in atl

Anonymous said...

Hey Ferfal Love your blog but all youre amazon store links are unavailable

Don Plata said...

"Sometimes we have arguments because of all the "stuff" that I have bought."

You are not alone. My wife was on my case about a bunch of long-shelf-life food that I had stacked around the house, which I intended to organize and put away. Finally, I just told her> Look we are going to eat this anyway, and just humor me and my harmless hobby. She shook her head, smiled and we moved on to the next thing.

Doug from Oz said...

I recently returned from my first OS holiday (in Thailand). While there, I developed a chest infection, and went into the local pharmacy for some antibiotics and cough medicine. The two items cost 160baht (A$5) And the cough medicine was quite easy to drink. Back home in Australia, the locally sold foul tasting cough medicine alone cost me $16! I've been able to get my Doctor to give me a couple of prescriptions for antibiotics. Only wish I'd thought to pick some more up over there before I left! An aussie doctor told me the drug companies get the absolute max for their product in the First World, while its usually dirt cheap everywhere else.
I know about the problem of being the only prepper, my family and friends think the world economy is going to just keep cruising along fine.

Anonymous said...

There was just a home-invasion robbery about a mile from here. A guy had a large collection of guns he liked to brag about. The inevitable happened: 2-3 guys in ski masks and dark clothes invaded his place, just him in it, got the combo to the gun safe from him, and took off with a bunch of guns. The guy, very beat-up, got loose and went to a neighbor's, and she called 911. The guy's in the local hospital, hope he'll be OK, a bunch if not all his guns are "at large", and there were cops and reporters at his place all day and into the night.

Maybe he thought it could never happen to him. Maybe he thought that since he knows his neighbors, he'd be OK - although according to the local paper he was rather free with information about his guns and had a lot of workmen etc in and out.

Could a dog, even a small one, some kind of basic alarm system, I mean even a string and tin cans system like soldiers would set up in the field, have helped?

Joseph said...

An interesting letter.

I can understand her family not being on board with prepping, I call it the "Can't happen here" syndrome. You might try talking about water being shut off temporarily, no power during a storm, etc...that may be something they can relate to a bit better.
Most people just don't believe a disaster or serious crime can happen to them.

Anonymous said...

Hey if you want some window security without the unwanted attention that bars can attract..... you should consider security film on the windows and shutters.
Every fathers day at my home, I have age appropriate firearms safety training for the kiddos and some shooting then a BIG bar-b-q with MY favorite RIBS. Mothers day is coming up; it IS your day have a gun safety talk with the family and shoot some clay birds ... maybe you'll get the kiddos hooked on shooting :)
Of course they still have to serve Ma her fav-o-rite meal too!

hsu said...

The best advice I can give is organize, organize, organize. That way, your gear is out of way.

If your family notices that you've built new/bigger shelves along the walls of your basement, or that you've suddenly hung up overhead shelves in the garage, they will just think it's a quirk of yours, nothing to get upset about, because it's not in the way of their day to day activities.

If your gear is just laying around all over the house, your family is going to complain about it, because it's in their face all of the time.

Don't be a hoarder, like the TV series. Be organized.

Anonymous said...

With regard to the fake plastic guns, a couple of months ago I was over at someone's house and saw a "gun" just sitting on a counter top. Sure looked like a real 9mm to me! I have no problem with guns but I just couldn't believe they would leave it just sitting there with teenagers around.

Sure enough it was a plastic BB gun.

But it looked as real as real can be to me!

If someone pointed it at me I'd take it as really real.

Anonymous said...

To Joseph on 2/8/11:

My wife is the same way. She doesn't believe anything bad will ever happen, much less major civil unrest. She calls it "end of the world planning" and thinks it's nuts. She says we've had periods of bad economy and civil problems before and they always get resolved.

Maybe she's right.

But I can't take the chance.

So I am doing some prepping. I think she knows but as long as I'm not in-her-face about it she more or less looks the other way. But there are some things I'd like to do (like get some more firearms, have 1 already and she isn't happy, not that she's anti-gun but for safte issues even though we have a gun safe and trigger locks). But I can't/won't go behind her back for things like that as much as it pains me.

I wish she was with me on it. I'm sure she would think of things I've missed and anyway should know all I know (which isn't a lot) for her sake and the sake of our kids.

I don't know how to get her on board until something happens and by then it will be too late.

Anonymous said...

this stuff gets around the regulation because its "for your fish"


Anonymous said...

oops sorry, just missed your part of the post pointing out the fish mox :)

P.P. Mazzini said...

I'm sensing a common theme here that hubby generally wants to prepare, and the Lovely Wife is resistant, notwithstanding the example of M in the Midwest. We should come up with a more definitive methodology for dealing with this situation. Hypnosis? ;-)

tim said...

point out that food is inflating worldwide and that much of the current unrest in egypt and ME started with food prices. With record poor harvests in china and russia and competition for corn because of ethanol, food prices may sky rocket, and there may be shortages of many any items even if the sht doesnt hit the fan dead center. Canned stuff dried goods sugar, flour and cooking oil has a few years shelf life. It's a hedge against inflation since you are going to use it anyway.get stuff you and your kids eat everyday. (don't buy cases of spam if thats not something your family likes.) Off topic, spam is good for you though. researchers studying the japanese people living over a century checked into their diet. They love spam and eat it everyday. Seems after the pacification and reconstruction following wwII, they were given rations of spam and were never able to kick the habit.

Anonymous said...

Well the SHTF for me yesterday as my wife found out my prepping work. She wasn't happy at first, thought it was crazy. But I did explain that I'm not looking to make the house into a bunker and I don't see conspriacies around every corner. I told her my goals (which are modest by comparison), my sources for supplies, etc.

She still isn't happy but she has given her passive-agressive approval to it. Still have to tread carefully though. But it's a start.