There are a few words currently being loosely tossed around by various media, government, and quasi-government types that truly need some clarification. Hopefully, this post will accomplish that purpose.
Prepping – acquiring needed supplies well before the need for them is seen, ie before an emergency happens.
Strategic stockpiling – government GRABBING of needed supplies during an emergency which blocks ordinary consumers from acquiring those same needed supplies (for example N-95 masks in the current pandemic – which some of us need on a regular basis but which we can no longer purchase due to government strategic stockpiling). NOTE: This should NOT be confused with true strategic stockpiling that wise governments do BEFORE an emergency arises. That is government prepping in a sensible way. Buying all of something during a time of need is no more justifiable on the part of a government than on the part of a private citizen.
Panic – what happens when unprepared people and governments who have failed to prepare BEFORE an emergency arises and they suddenly realize that they are about to be caught “with their shorts down” so to speak, not having the supplies they need. The advantage governments have here over the average citizen is that governments can demand the supplies they need, leaving citizens unable to meet their needs. Thus artificially creating a shortage that hurts their citizens even as they proclaim that this action is being taken to protect the citizens.
Hoarding – what unprepared people and governments call preparing before a crisis/emergency happens. I recently spoke with a relative in another state who routinely, for many years, has purchased certain supplies on a yearly basis – knowing from past experience what the family will need for a year. That’s not hoarding; it’s using money wisely since inflation generally makes the cost of goods increase over the course of a year. Nor does it suddenly become hoarding when those same supplies are now in short supply for everyone else.
Hysteria – how stupid people and governments describe appropriate actions by unprepared people facing an emergency, for example hearing that the main suppliers of rice have stopped shipping rice so the unprepared person goes to the store and calmly buys enough rice to get their family through a period of time when it may not be available to purchase, or be too expensive to purchase. Note the word “calmly” as compared to “hysterical”.
On the topic of hysteria, how many fights have you seen in your local grocery stores over supplies? Those fights could very qualify as hysteria, but I haven’t seen any here, nor heard of any anywhere in this state.
Realizing that a product you need for sanitation, health, or food may soon be in short supply and stocking up on it is wise and prudent.
Being considerate of the next person who may be seeing the same coming short supply is kind and thoughtful.
Having those same supplies in your home long before the emergency hits is NOT hoarding, it’s wise and prudent caring for your family’s needs.
Those who follow the golden rule – whatever faith they may be – will then find ways to share with others who are truly in need, because that’s what the golden rule tells us to do. Furthermore, they will do this WITHOUT any form of government intervention.
Government redistribution is a socialist/communist lie, pure and simple. It’s as real as unicorns.