So there seems to be a mild concern among the blogosphere that if Obama loses the election (and I can only hope that’s actually the case but I’m not getting my heart set on it) there will be rioting in the streets with at least one washed-up has-been author claiming it will kick off a second Civil War.
Lets back the Obamadrama-wagon up a second…..
First off, the kind of people who would riot over an Obama loss are the same ones who are likely to riot over an Obama win. These are idiots who riot when their local sports team wins the national championship. Their interest in politics isn’t nearly as sincere as their interest in simply getting to run wild and break things. On the bright side, they usually stick to their own neighborhoods and burn their own homes.
Secondly, the vast majority of anti-Obama people are, like myself, rather well armed and motivated whereas most lefties eschew guns because they ‘wont live in fear’…thus the overwhelming tactical advantage goes to the anti-Obama forces. (Part of me is evilly chuckling at parallels to the Russian Revolution and how the Obamanians would be Reds and the anti-Obamites would be, hysterically, called ‘Whites’. Oh the irony. Trust me, this is funny.)
So, really, it wouldn’t be a civil war nearly as much as it would be a one-sided ballistic smackdown. Oh sure…there’ll be crowds blocking highways and pulling down infrastructure but an armed force capable of installing an Obama presidency at gunpoint? Hardly.
Not that it matters, Im pretty sure he’s gonna win although Id very much like to be proved wrong.
Enough politics. Lets talk about civil disturbances.
Civil disturbance is the current term for ‘riot’. While we all feel fairly competent to handle the single home invader or perhaps even a two- or threesome of bad guys a riot usually counts members in the dozen. Most of the time they’re bent on property damage and the incidental looting-of-opportunity.
The most notable and recent riot would have been the one after the Rodney King verdict back in ’92. Groups were picked out for attack (Asian shopkeepers were a favorite target, however they had no reluctance to grab a gun and defend their businesses), buildings were burned and looted and the cops had their hands full for a few days. This is in contrast to events in Katrina-ville which I suppose were not technically riots but simple garden variety looting.
The best defense against a riot is the same defense that works against pretty much any violent threat: don’t be there when it happens. Stay away from large protests or other crowds where the situation may turn ugly. If your business is in an area that may be involved, or if your business is one that may be targeted, take steps to secure it and remove valuables. You can stand on the roof with a shotgun, as many storeowners did during the King riot, but that’s a personal preference.
If your home is in the way of one of these things you’ve got some hard choices to make. During the King riot some business owners put up signs that said ‘Black owned’ in their windows hoping that the rioters sense of racial unity would protect them. Maybe a few Obama lawn signs would help your cause. (Or sticking a McCain sign on the lawn of your neighbors a few houses down to distract the crowd.)
Certainly there are some ballistic measures that can be employed but holding a mob at gunpoint never seems like a good idea. It well and truly would be like a zombie movie where some poor bastard is armed with a revolver and theres fifty zombies shamblimg up the stairs towards him. He’ll get a few of them but in the end he’ll be a red smear on the ground. Well, for about an hour, anyway…then he’ll be chomping on brain stems with the rest of the crowd…but you get my point.
So, that’s the dramatic aspect of a riot…dragging people from cars, burning houses and businesses, cars being flipped over and burned, etc, etc. Lets look at the less dramatic but still important aspects. Even if you’re fifty miles from the nearest major population center theres still the possibility for a ‘civic disturbance’ to affect you.
· In California (naturally) the .gov shut down the sale of guns and ammo during the crisis. So you do have enough ammo and firearms on hand for yourself and your guests, right? Right???
· Commerce will probably suffer some disruption as freight avenues such as roads and bridges are made impassable or locked down. Stores will close or have very limited hours…assuming you want to risk heading to them. Have enough consumables (food, fuel, etc) on hand to last until order is restored.
· Its possible that utility services may suffer. Angry crowds can knock down power lines or cause utilities to rethink sending their crews out in the midst of the chaos.
· Local law enforcement and other emergency services will be on a hair-trigger and probably tied up making sure things don’t get weird in their own backyard. The cops will probably be pretty amped up and in no mood to be patient or courteous…avoid them like you’d avoid the rioters. Don’t expect 911 to be up to its non-crisis level of performance.
· Public transportation, public schools, and other municipal services may be closed or functioning on a limited basis.
· Personal travel may be curtailed, if not by the angry mobs then by the ‘authorities’ who don’t want you getting caught up in things. Be prepared to stay home. (And be prepared to be caught at work unable to get home.)
As Im sure you’ve noticed, these precautions are pretty much the same precautions we take for almost everything – having food, water, fuel, ammo, e tc. In place and in quantity. As long as the rampaging horde stays downtown doing their thing, you’ll probably be just fine. Still, it’s a good idea to have gas in the tank and a place to fall back to if the crowd suddenly starts marching in your direction.
There’ll be some sort of civil disturbances after the election. Mostly raucous celebrations that get a little out of hand, I believe. (Yes, Im forecasting an Obama win…dammit.) But ‘civil war’? Not a chance. Not this time. Not yet.