Re-Post: The Importance Of The Right Label

With all the titles and terms being thrown around of late (especially in the Oregon situation), I thought reposting this would be appropriate. While talking with a guy a while back, he became adamant about not calling himself a “Survivalist” because he thought the title had been sullied. He thought it was more important to say he was part of a “militia” since as he put it, “It’s authorized by the Constitution.”. I had to spell out for him that the “militia” has no more authority or allowance by the feds than an Neighborhood Protection Team (NPT) or a Survivalist group, and suggested he do some research before we continued the conversation. I also pointed out that the term “militia” has been turned into a term of disdain by many, due to the media spin and a few asshats that made a name for themselves, and not a good one.

Here’s what I’ve written about labeling yourself and why it’s important to be honest about it. Flowery politically correct labels won’t save you or make you more palatable to the masses. The media has seen to that. When it comes to labels, I’ve heard a number of people say that what Kerodin has done here and here (they are a few of many facts about his actions) reflects poorly on the III%er label, but then they say “It doesn’t matter” because no one really pays attention to him and his rhetoric (and they’ve put too much money into their patches, t shirts, and stickers, right?). To a degree, they are right, but using the term “III%er” as opposed to “Survivalist” is different. The term “Survivalist” describes a lifestyle and mindset within the word, where as “III%er”, “3per”, “The III%” is a number that doesn’t describe crap other than a percentage of something, and is only understood if the person hearing it has the context of the word as it applies to our meaning.

We are all part of “A militia” if we can bear arms, but as I said here, trying to pass off the “We’re a Constitutional Militia” line doesn’t hold water in reality. As I wrote in this post, you’re not a commando, but you don’t need to be. “Titles of Ability” don’t stop bad guys, skills do. Also, when it comes to your rights, if you have to keep talking about them, and trying to convince people that you have them, you don’t, because you are acting as if it’s a privilege you are convincing people that you deserve and/or are asking for. You “ask” or are “given” privileges, you “exercise” rights. We have the RIGHT to protect ourselves and those we care about. We have the RIGHT to training to perform it efficiently and effectively as an individual or as a group. Anyone or any entity that says you do not falls into the “Ignoramus”, or “Tyrant” category, and needs to be “Schooled”.

5 August, 2014


As a Kid of 12, I had already labeled myself a “Survivalist”. I watched “The Day After” and knew I had to learn how to survive such a catostrophic event.  I had a desire to learn all I could about every facet of self sufficiency, whether It was fighting the Ruskies (Ala, “Red Dawn”) with small unit tactics, and running a highly efficient combat rifle, or gardening, and hydroponics. My first issue of a survival magazine, did nothing but wet my appetite to fulfill these desires. Here’s a pic of that first issue (yes, I still have it, ask Mosby)


The term “Survivalist” became a term that was used, abused and distorted by liberals and their minions in the 80’s, and was used anytime a group with nefarious intentions (neo nazi’s, etc.) was in the news. I remember watching a 20/20 segment on “Survivalists”, and even though some of it was OK, the majority was misleading at best, and an outright lie at worst.

Enter the 90’s, where we had situations involving Ruby Ridge/the Weavers, Waco, and Oklahoma City, and the term “Militia” started to overtake the “Survivalist” label to a degree, as being the new boogieman title. At the end of the 90’s, we started hearing a term describing those that were getting ready for the Y2K event, and that term was “Prepper”. The term “Prepper” was apparently politically correct, at least as much as a term describing a self reliant individual could be. My take on the “preppers” of that time frame was that they wanted to be ready, just in case, but they generally didn’t want people around them to know they were “nutty” preparedness types.

Since the 90’s, we’ve had a few scares that smacked people out of their “situational awareness slumber”, but for the most part,  people have stayed asleep. One of those events was 9/11, and still another was Katrina. All the while, the average person that readies him or herself for a cataclysmic event, is still calling themselves “Prepper”. I believe there are three types of people that call themselves “Prepper”. 1) Is the “New to preparedness” types, who just don’t know any other term to use. 2) Are those who are hobbyist preppers.  They have nothing better to do with their time right now, and “prepping” is somewhat in vogue. These are the types that would cease and desist tomorrow, if the feds said it was no longer legal, without so much as a peep, except the complaint of time and money invested. 3) Are those who are actually “Survivalist”, but don’t have the guts to admit this, for fear of being thought of as a “Nut”

This is one of my favorite quotes describing what I think a “Survivalist” is.

.”A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
Specialization is for insects.”             Robert A. Heinlein

A “Survivalist” is one who isn’t afraid of the task ahead. Even though those tasks appear foreboding. The “Survivalist” is optimistic about the outcome of any future calamity, and realizes that being prepared for anything is a lifestyle, not a hobby. A “Survivalist” doesn’t give two shits about being politically correct. since reality dictates that “The politically correct” will be the first to die. This is true, when you consider their lack of foresight and the unending need for their “perception of things” to be real, and that perception will always override the true “reality of things” in their mind. Max did two interesting posts here and here, concerning the perception of labels and titles for those that desire to be, or are self reliant.

I have been asked plenty of times if I am in a militia. My response generally is a variation of “Although we are all part of “The Militia”, I am not part of “A Militia”, I am a Survivalist and a trainer, plain and simple. I train people in “Survivalist” skills. whether it be a married couple, learning wilderness survival skills and empty hand combatives, or a militia unit, learning squad and detachment level small unit tactics.

I’m sick to death of the least qualified and worthy among us (liberals, socialists, entitlement apologists, “reality” theorists, etc.) dictating what we can say, do, or call ourselves, all the while using an imbecilic, juvenile, and petulant media to forward their twisted utopian agenda. Guess what? I could give a rat’s ass what someone thinks of me, my decisions, or the fact that I call myself a ‘SURVIVALIST”.

I AM A SURVIVALIST, not a Prepper! I don’t need to use a politically correct term (or make a new one LOL) to describe my less than politically correct mindset and actions. My concern for the mental fragility of those who piss their pants if they think someone in the room is armed, let alone think someone in close proximity is prepared for TEOTWAWKISTAN ( a mystical place full of many challenging situations, especially for the unprepared), is non existent, and bordering on an open hostility towards them for expecting others to take up the slack, when a survival situation occurs.

August '86 Wolverine

As a kid I read books and articles by Tappan, Cooper, Gear, Angier, Duncan,and Benson. Some, I’ve realized should be taken with a grain of salt. Others were spot on in every aspect, but I can honestly say I learned something from every one of them. One of the themes that runs rampant through a lot of their writings, is being responsible for yourself, and making self sufficiency a way of life in every aspect. Except for Brad Angier, none of them really had a “Lone survivor” type mindset or approach to survival living (he lived in a very remote area, with only his wife). The majority advocated “Survival Groups”, as the smartest way to efficiently go about the task of living through a calamity.

Whether it is an extended family group, or a small social group, working as a team is the way “Survivalists” will survive (“Why Survivalists Will Survive The Apocalypse” was what my Senior year term paper topic was in HS). If you don’t have a group (family, or social) learn what you can through training and education, because after SHTF, you will be a resource that will save lives. Learning to survive alone, and planning to survive alone are two different things. The difference is similar to the difference between “Living” and “Existing”. Don’t make the mistake of going it alone, if given a choice.

What’s my definition difference between a “Survivalist” and a “Prepper”? A “Survivalist” has a mindset that makes preparing for bad times a lifestyle and looks forward to the training, education, and acquiring of the means to accomplish that goal. A lot of the “Preppers” I’ve met, on the other hand, seem to have a mindset similar to “If I acquire enough stuff, I’ll be fine.” A number of them don’t want to be “labelled” as that “Nutty Survivalist”, or a “Bert Gummer” (personally, I liked the Bert Gummer “survivalist” character in “Tremors”).


Here’s the problem, if you’re not willing to use a term that aptly describes you and the choices you’ve made about your lifestyle due to a societal faux pas, and because it might cause you mental anguish. Why would anyone think you could be counted on when things get physically tough? Whether you are a “Survivalist”, or a “Militia” member, NUT THE HELL UP ALREADY! If we’re right and somethin’ is a’comin’, you’re gonna need ’em.


American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE


16 thoughts on “Re-Post: The Importance Of The Right Label

  1. Reblogged this on Arctic Specter and commented:
    The matter of labels as laid out by Mason Dixon Tactical. I suppose you would call me a survivalist, though admittedly there is still a great deal of things I need to learn. There is a term Dodge missed in his comparison; the dark side of survivalist -survivor. I view survivors as those who have no moral compass in their pursuit of survival. They will take advantage of you, and take from you. They will even kill you just to take your supplies. Their goal is to survive, no matter the cost.

    • I see “Survivalists” and “Survivors” differently. Survivalists plan ahead (generally considered an ethical requirement) and are as prepared as possible and usually better equipped to deal with situations based on their having planned ahead. Survivors live because of dumb luck and/or unethical or immoral decisions, and are far more likely to do unethical or immoral things to survive, simply because they feel they have no other choice.

  2. >>> You “ask” or are “given” privileges, you “exercise” rights. We have the RIGHT to protect ourselves and those we care about. We have the RIGHT to training to perform it efficiently and effectively as an individual or as a group. Anyone or any entity that says you do not falls into the “Ignoramus”, or “Tyrant” category, and needs to be “Schooled”.

    Nice. I think we can even broaden it. You have the RIGHT to any damn thing you choose, as long as it doesn’t obstruct someone else from the same. Not the stuff you pick, not the stuff I pick, not the stuff anyone picks. Wanna shoot some junk into your veins? Go for it, idiot. Idiots get to be free too. Right or wrong?

    FWIW I thought this was pretty good too…

    >>> if you’re not willing to use a term that aptly describes you and the choices you’ve made about your lifestyle due to a societal faux pas, and because it might cause you mental anguish. Why would anyone think you could be counted on when things get physically tough? Whether you are a “Survivalist”, or a “Militia” member, NUT THE HELL UP ALREADY!

    Makes sense. Things are what they are, not what we say they are. Of course that goes against Lonnie’s theory that everyone’s “mind-set” is what HE says it is, based on what HE calls them. I’m not that clairvoyant myself. But hey, he has the RIGHT to claim clairvoyance, just as anyone has the RIGHT to swallow it or not.

    As to who would actually do what–IN REALITY–I guess that remains to be seen, unless we know ahead of time based on what we call ’em. Me, I figure, “Reality is the final arbiter.” In my experience, virtually all combat guys go along with that.

    Not sure where that leaves the title of the essay though.

  3. I would call meself someone who plans/practices to best of ability(which at times and some areas sorely lacking),best label would be a Leave Me the F$#K Aloner,I just want to live my life without harming others and just want the same.To me really doesn’t seem difficult but given the state of the world seems it is difficult.

    I will say some survivors may survive due to evil but also think some found something in themselves in trying times they had no idea existed,and not thru evil actions but innate survival thinking skills make due,hopefully they pass what they learn onto others.Sure,perhaps a bit of luck also,but then we have all had a bit of luck at some point in our lives.I am not suggesting counting on good luck but if it falls your way take it and be grateful for it,and,we can also head in directions in life with open minds were luck is more likely.

    Off topic but said would update as hit it am slowly getting into the book Fortunes In Formulas suggested by a author on this site.I got a later(30’s version)which is signed as a gift to someone in 1945,cool history.I am at beginning as the winter sets in and more reading time available,learning old school science methods/Latin to English words used commonly in sciences/basic methods of setting up a laboratory/workshop,keep in mind early 20th century so some easy and some ingredients either illegal for some things now or just no longer easily available.I see some stuff that may be great in short term breakdown but also how to make products and such that may have a more long term/things looking up call for(an example would be say cosmetics,not really needed in societal break down)while some antidotes to poisons might come in handy quickly,though must research and see that cure is not worse then the poison!I do see this as a interesting but slow read this winter and will report back on book as I delve deeply into it and some things I learned.

  4. Observing the nation and world today, I think being aware of situations and preparing yourself and those you care about to continue to live through them – and afterwards – makes you a realist. If you don’t do so, if you are simply a rabble rouser, who cannot put cogent thoughts together and view this life as an opportunity to misdirect, play games (as if this all ‘isn’t real’) and plan on getting your needs met by running confidence games, schemes, and ‘capers’ – then your label is ‘kerodin’.
    And brothers, I’m sure we all agree there…

      • k doesn’t like you, or Arctic, or DTG, or Pete, Kenny, or… on and on. If we are judged by the company we keep;
        …I’m good with that.

        • I take pride in the fact that I’m at the top of his list. He’s taken actual action against Kenny and I and failed miserably, but you’ll notice he’s never made an overt threat to either of us, as he has with others. Could it be because he’s a chickenshit, hides behind his wife’s sex and race, coward, who knows his bluff would be called if he said “Say it to my face.”? By all means come and let me say it to your face. The problem with that is he’d then have to act, or leave with his tail between his legs. Hmmm, I wonder how that would turn out?

        • Here’s a question for the readership. How much of a failure would you consider yourself as a man and a husband, if your wife felt that for her to get protection, she had to go to the very people you despise (The courts and LEO’s)?

  5. I have said to “k”; as he was berating lineman, myself, and others – if there was someone so foolish as to threaten my family – most especially my wife – my response would not be online in a blog post or email, or with a phone call – my truck would be idling in their yard, and I would be knocking on their door. That is a promise, not a threat. And consider it kindness that I am at the door, for my skillset is actually setting up ‘a long way away’ and then turning a melon into red mist.
    k has taken my comment “when faced with an enemy and a traitor, shoot the traitor first” – and has several times of late stated that now that he’s “IFF’d” the traitors, he will be ‘coming after them first’. If I – or any of us, really – believed him capable of carrying that forward, I believe k would find out the hard truth of what he does not know. And how ignorance and self deception can bring very bitter lessons.
    Be blessed and be safe, brother.

    • He’s said a lot of late towards a lot of people that does nothing but show his lack of reality based thinking. I love it when non mil guys use mil terms because it sounds cool, or they read it in a book. It’s cute.

  6. The terms we use are formed in a crucible he knows nothing about, and they are anything but ‘cool’. As has been said before, no one abhors war more than the warrior. Those who want conflict, desire it due to ignorance. It may indeed be inevitable; but to seek that carnage, suffering, and horror; is incomprehensible to a moral man. When it comes, it will not resemble a video game, or 4th of July parade.
    He will piss himself, in a fetal position, in a corner. Grandiose dreams will be of no use.
    And will not save him.

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