PORTLAND, Nov. 23 /Christian Newswire/ -- Not only is nuclear and biological disaster more feasible now than ever before, the NBC and CBS hit fall television shows "Jericho" and "Heroes" have raised the issue of civilians trying to survive an American Hiroshima, which intelligence experts warn is inevitable.
In CBS's "Jericho," the citizens of a small Kansas town are struck overnight with the need to survive the fallout of a nuclear attack on most of the United States, while in NBC's "Heroes," ordinary people find extraordinary talents in their struggle to prevent global cataclysm that could hit Manhattan first.
Executive producer of "Jericho," Jon Turteltaub, told Reuters he wanted to create tales about how people isolated in a small town could survive a catastrophic event.
"I think what we have all really focused on is less the nuclear message and more of the sociology of how to behave when everything goes wrong," he said. "Most of us are pretty wonderful during the good times, but our true character comes out when we're confronted with tragedy and disasters. True leadership appears, and really hard choices have to be made."
Perhaps it is due to the uncertain state of the world today, where the war on terror and the threat of nuclear or biological attack from rogue groups against Americans is very real, that serialized "Heroes" and "Jericho" have provided loyal followers with a fantasy escape and at a deeper level resonated with Americans in a way that makes them believe they could actually survive a "mushroom cloud" scenario. Across the nation this has been witnessed by an increase in the purchase of products and books that teach how to survive disasters.
Thomas Horn, president of Survivor Mall, said recent decisions by his Wholesale Army Surplus Outlet & Bookstore to include a number of personal preparedness products like "Survival Kits," "Potassium Iodide Tablets" (that shield the thyroid from radiation damage), and books like "The U.S. Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Warfare Survival Manual," was a result of lessons learned following 9/11, and more recent threats such as the North Korean nuclear weapons test.
"I hope all of us understand that we are living in a different day and age," he told the Raiders News Network. "The earth is changing, weather is not the same, and terrorists are playing with biotechnology. If faced with a catastrophic natural or man made event, stores will close, utilities will be unavailable and emergency personnel will be tied up helping those most in need of immediate medical attention. Every adult and especially Christians need to take preparedness steps for themselves and their family's personal welfare."
When asked why Christians should be singled out as having greater responsibility than others for providing a role-model for preparedness, Thomas said, "For one, the President of the United States has said publicly that he is a Christian. This makes an attack on the general population of Christians more likely among rogue groups like al-Qaida who want to focus retribution on people of similar faith. Second and more important, it is the Bible that says prudent people foresee difficulties and prepare for them, while simpletons go blindly on and suffer the consequences [Proverbs 22:3]. We are admonished to be prepared. According to 1 Timothy 5:8, an adult that doesn't provide for their relatives -- especially their immediate family -- has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. Remember Joseph saving Egypt? We should follow the Bible and set aside what long-term storage food and water we can. Make sure it's Coast Guard approved, 5-year shelf like product that doesn't require refrigeration, and purchase or create an emergency kit. We have dozens of free books and manuals in our store that will show people everything they need to know to do this."
Holly Deyo of Millennium Ark agrees: "Besides the threats of radiation, chemical, and biological contamination from WMDs, the need to be prepared for natural disasters exists as well. You have only to watch interviews with disaster victims to see why it is important to be prepared before an emergency occurs."
Holly is the author of the manual, "Dare to Prepare," which offers practical preparedness advice including important contact information that proved essential during Katrina.
But Thomas believes God has awakened the nation from its naivety about security. Following 9/11 and subsequent hurricane seasons, citizens realized they could no longer depend entirely on government agencies to save everybody during an emergency. Taking responsibility for one's self and family is the hard lesson we have learned.
Radio host Stephen Quayle agrees that survival kits, long term storage foods and water are key, but adds that financial decisions need to be included in planning too, so that sound currency investments can retain values if for instance nations divest from the Dollar during natural or man made chaos. This should be part of every planning session on future security and survival.
All three of the experts we talked to have seen sharp increases in the number of people seeking to be prepared for disaster. Thomas warns that some of the products people may find advertised are of inferior quality, so be sure to check the business. The better companies usually provide free information and manuals (see "FREE Survival Guides" at http://www.SurvivorMall.com) or discounts on their items to help churches, families, schools and business be prepared.
Christians and church leaders must stand at the forefront of this issue by holding classes on survival, distributing free booklets and CDs on preparedness, and helping people get organized to face the future with confidence.
Deuteronomy 30:19: "Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, that you and your descendants might live!"
ON THE WEB:
The Survivor Mall http://www.SurvivorMall.com
Millennium Ark http://www.StanDeyo.com
The Q-Files http://www.SteveQuayle.com