Waiting For The Apocalypse . . . . .
If you have seen the National Geographic's TV series "Doomsday Preppers" it becomes immediately evident that there is large subculture of the USA addicted to fear. I would agree that it is important to prepare for the occasional natural disaster, but as the title of this series states these people are actaully gleefully watiing for the end of the world.
And for almost everyone of them, it's a question of when, not if, the world will end. Every hour segment begins with the subjects stating the particular scenario they're prepping for, which naturally comes across as myopic. The likelihood of the various scenarios range from "possible but unlikely" to near-impossible to "hard to be sure without more data" to "you're paranoid and need help". But the thing about obsessing about the apocalypse is that you might end up looking forward to it. There's more than a hint of glee in many of the interviewees as they envision themselves and their [mainly nuclear] families safely tucked in their bunkers while the rest of society goes to hell in a handbasket.
And for some of them, this may be more than a figure of speech. While the series stays clear of discussing their political and religious beliefs, most of them are Caucasians who think that social collapse is inevitable, whatever their preferred catalyst: EMP pulse, thermonuclear war, mega-earthquake, global pandemic, hyperinflation. It all leads to the same thing, and they want to be counted among the chosen few, not just another "victim".
Not surprisingly for this "us vs. them" mode of thinking, a lot of preppers are armed to the teeth and trained in hand-to-hand combat. It's almost like they're chomping at the bit for the day when they can unload hot lead on someone for merely stepping on their lawn. One married couple practices navigating their home in the dark like some TV SWAT team, which is stashed throughout with various hidden caches of firearms. One man accidentally blows-off his thumb with his gun during a training exercise. Good thing the camera crew was there that day, or he'd still be missing his entire digit. Another household wants to turn their two pet German Shepherds into attack dogs. They watch as an actual trained dog is let loose on a simulated attacker, who is rather unfortunately cast as African American.
They seem to have a toggle switch, black or white, "us vs them", mentality that I am simply not comfortable with. [And fortunately it is not a part of daily life here in Thailand].