How to Survive Martial Law: A Guide to Staying Safe

How to Survive Martial Law

Martial law is one thing all preppers fear, and it can be a terrifying experience. America is facing times of social unrest that far surpasses historical unrest. Uncontrollable riots, social unrest, and more may lead to a call for Martial Law, no matter who presides over the nation.

A massive social uprising has been in the works for a long time. Not only can social unrest cause a call for Martial Law, but it can happen after any natural or human-made disaster. While not the same thing, we saw President Trump declaring a national emergency to force funds for a border wall. We never know what to expect from the government.

Since we currently aren’t under Martial Law, and if you can read this, we still aren’t under Martial Law, now is the time to figure out what to do and how to prepare.

What is Martial Law?

Before we dive into how to survive Martial Law, you have to understand what it is.

The Supreme Court hasn’t given us a full definition of what it entails, but Martial Law is the suspension of ordinary law, the Constitution, the Government and more. A military dictatorship replaces the rules during emergencies or civil unrest when the current government cannot perform their job.

Martial Law isn’t just a worry for America; it can happen anywhere in the world. It can happen for a variety of reasons, such as:

  • War
  • An EMP attack
  • A natural disaster such as a hurricane or Yellowstone erupting
  • A foreign invasion
  • Civil war

How to Survive Martial Law

Living under Martial Law is scary. The right to a fair trial is waved, and freedom of speech is gone. You can’t stop it from happening, which makes it feel even scarier. There are a few things you can do to survive Martial Law and gain control of your situation.

Stock Up Ahead of Time

Like any disaster scenario, it’s best to prepare ahead of time than during the situation. During Martial Law, store shelves will clear out in a heartbeat, and going to the store will be a scary job. You want to make sure you have plenty of food and water stocked up. Always have a minimum of 3 days’ worth of food stored, and you need one gallon of water per person per day.

Always Keep a Low Profile

What you don’t want is to become a target. Those who riot or are civilly disobedient are targets. During this time, preppers are vulnerable, and you need to keep a low profile at all times. Never call attention to yourself.

Never talk about your prepping. No one else needs to know what your family does or doesn’t have. Don’t dress in military-style clothing. Camouflage isn’t a good choice; save it for the wilderness. If you wear military clothing, you risk confrontation. Remember – low profile.

Listen, Don’t Talk

Freedom of speech is gone, so it’s best not to talk. Do more listening than talking. See what your neighbors or friends say, and hope that no one knows you’re a prepper. Lying in this situation is okay.

Trust No One

During Martial Law, people will try to impersonate military or law enforcement officers. Some might try to become the law. Preppers call this WROL post-disaster, which stands for Without The Rule of Law. It’s possible, so trust no one.

That also goes for friends and neighbors. They can quickly turn you in for things that you might say or do, so trust no one. These are scary times.

Know the Rules

Rules and laws change under Martial Law, so keep a tab on the current rules to avoid getting in trouble. Write them down or keep them in a notebook. Always pay attention to the rules that the authorities tell you, and understand that they can change during the chaos.

It can be hard to keep track of everything because you will receive different reports. Keep track of who said what will help.

Pretend You Have Nothing

Hopefully, as a prepper, you have enough water and food supplies in your cabinet, but you can’t let anyone else know you have these stockpiles. You have less reason to head onto the streets, but you need to play the part. Remember – low profile. People will notice that you, somehow, can never leave your house and they’ll ask questions.

Check out what your neighbors do and do that. Go to the local grocery store and pick up bread and other groceries.

If you do need to pick up supplies, try to avoid large stores like Walmart. Make sure you have cash on hand because ATM and credit card machines might crash.  

Avoid “Camps”

Avoid getting stuck in camps or large shelters with hundreds or thousands of people. These situations can quickly spiral out of control. You’re opening yourself up to a dangerous scenario, and people are likely to react violently. Bringing your family into these locations is rarely a good thing, and the military can force you to stay once you’re inside.

Decide If You Should Stay or Go

One of the most important things to decide is if you should stay where you are or go. Typically, the safest place for your family is inside of your house without lights on, but what if you can’t stay there. You don’t want to run out of food or water under Martial Law.

Whatever you do, don’t make plans late. The military and National Guard are trained to respond quickly and in a calculated way. Figure out how long you can stay in a spot and pick a backup location just in case you need to bug out. Be prepared to leave if needed. You don’t have to die for your home.

Safety in Numbers

The last thing you need to survive Martial Law is to have some community. Even if you don’t have weapons, you’re always safer in a group. You need people that you can count on to protect you. It makes you safer when facing troops or law enforcement. However, make sure you pick the right group and be wary of groups who make poor choices. Leave them behind fast – especially when survival is on the line during a SHTF scenario.


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