Precautionites or Precautionaries?
I've started listening to Andrew Wilkow's radio show as of late, at the recommendation of Karl at KR Training. Wilkow intersperses political opinion with regular calls for people to become more prepared in a reasonable fashion.
In today's show, he suggested a better name for preppers might be "precautionites" or "precautionaries" to more accurately reflect the nature and motivation of those who engage in this endeavor. One definition I found for the word precaution - "a measure taken in advance to prevent something dangerous, unpleasant, or inconvenient from happening" - certainly matches the motivation of those who take preparedness seriously.
Precautionaries may be a better descriptor for us. Preppers are preparing to deal with the aftermath, generally speaking. If you're a precautionary, on the other hand, you're not just working to deal with the aftermath, you're taking action "to prevent something dangerous, unpleasant or inconvenient from happening." We should be going beyond focusing efforts solely on survival. We should be actively working to reduce risk by educating others and taking steps to avoid problems in the first place.
This message is certainly salient today as we see the dreadful news about the school shooting in Marysville, Washington. There will no doubt be a rush to analyze and lay blame on a host of people and reasons. Regardless of what we may think was the cause of this, we all should be taking steps to manage the possible risks we face in our schools and work places. Building relationships with people who may be hurting inside and paying attention to warning signs from those who may take irrational measures should be on our "to do" lists along with learning first aid and having a plan to deal with emergencies.
As you discuss today's news with your kids and family, discuss your emergency plans for sure, but then also ask them how they might deal with warning signs from fellow students and co-workers. Often the prevention costs far less - in many ways - than the damages that can follow.