I must have watched this video about 10 times in a row. It terrifies me every single time, but I still watch it. I can`t help it. You don`t get to see people acting like starving wolves every day. It`s shocking, like an exotic disease that us, Americans, can only see on Discovery Channel. But the truth is… this has happened here, in USA, a million times. And it will happen more and more often, as soon as the food crisis ravages stores and supermarkets and food prices hit new records.
This is what happened in Haiti, after the 2010 earthquake, when trucks came loaded with food and started handing it out to hungry residents.
It`s not a matter of if, but of how soon? And I`ll show you exactly why.
It all started with an article I read on shtfplan.com, “Zombie Entertainment: A Lesson in Cognitive Dissonance and the Red Pill”. Sounds very complicated, but the idea behind it is very simple: in extreme situations, people forget how to be people and become animals. Zombies, if you like, since it`s fashionable.
It`s a proven scientific fact: when confronted with uncomfortable, surprising situations, people are more likely to engage into immoral, violent behaviour. According to Kimberly Paxton, the author of the article, this is called “cognitive dissonance“, one of Dr. Festinger`s behavioral theories.
It can be described as a powerful mental discomfort when a person is caught between two opposite (or different) values: the reality that requires a behaviour society would normally reject… and his/her moral belief system.
Want to guess which one of these two completely vanishes? It`s the moral system, because it gets in the way of survival. Unconsciously, your mind blocks your principles, your values, your education… and unleashes an animalic behaviour that will help you survive. How scary is that? Imagine that, in half a second, everything you knew about yourself disappears and Dr. Jekyll suddenly turns to Mr. Hyde.
Something like this:
The classic Black Friday compilation. Starts off alright, people laughing and having fun, waiting to get in the store and buy lots of stuff they don`t need… and then… hell breaks loose. Men, women, children, elders… they all fight, bite, swear, yell and threaten each other. And all for a few useless items on sale. Can you imagine what these people would do if they had NO food, NO water and NO power?
They take over YOUR town.
New Orleans was kneed down by looters after Katrina had already ravaged the city. People who once were friends and neighbors started breaking into each other’s homes and looted like there was no tomorrow.
Right now, you might not be able to picture just how easy it is to turn from a respectable human being to an animal blinded by hate. But, as it has been proved over and over again for centuries… all it takes is a frantic mob, the feeling you`re under pressure and someone to start a fight or break a window… and there you go! Chaos sets in.
And it doesn`t even have to get that tragic for the fight to begin… People start acting like beasts the minute they`re pulled out of their comfort zone. And Hurricane Sandy showed us that, better than ever. Just look at what happens right here, in the U.S, when gas becomes rare and precious:
That was filmed about a month and a half ago. Not during Medieval times. Not for the movie Fight Club. And it`s not some candid camera kind of prank, either. It`s for real. Somewhere, at a gas station in New York, people were attacking each other like mad men, because they were frustrated from sitting in line for gas!
So why are we even surprised when we read something like…
“As the small amount of food ran out, the survivors debated whether they should eat the pilot (who had previously died from a head injury).
“We thought about the pilot, I don’t know how to say it … to feed ourselves from him. We thought about this, but some people were not in agreement because the situation was already so extreme,” Suazo said.”
That sounds absolutely gruesome, doesn`t it? And it`s remarkably similar to that plane crash in 1972, when members of an Uruguayan rugby team actually fed on their friends and teammates to stay alive. When I first heard of this, many years ago, I was disgusted and couldn`t even imagine what kind of monsters would do that for their own survival. And then, in 2008, I read the news on the Chilean plane crash… and somehow, the picture became clearer.
I realised people will never be people when dealing with disasters or crises. Not ever! Not because humanity isn `t evolving, but because there`s a stronger urge deep down that takes over like a demon, to make sure we survive.
Unfortunately, this is a burden we have to bear. And, to keep it under the surface, we must prepare for the coming crisis, before we find ourselves losing control. There`s no need to fight the demon. You just have to lock it inside.
Good article. I wish more people had the vision to see the “bigger picture” as you described here.
I also think it’s important to remember that our moral compass never really turns off. Regardless if we want to blame our actions on strong urges that take us over “like a demon”, everyone knows that deep down inside we all have a choice to make. To do what’s right, or what’s wrong.
Resisting the momentary “urge” is the easy part. It’s the living of a an upright and just life before the urge hits us that makes all the difference in the world. If we are able to master that, simple urges can no longer master us.
Thanks for the article!