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How To Argue With Non-Preppers



Feature | Man with bug out bag on blue background | How To Argue With Non-Preppers

Learn how to argue with non-preppers and win with these comebacks and perhaps change their minds, too!

RELATED: How To Become A Prepper

In this article:

  1. Tell Them About Small-Scale Disasters and Emergencies
  2. “Why Do You Pay Insurance on Your Car?”
  3. Dig Up Old Stories in Your Town or Neighborhood
  4. “The Rich Are Doing It!”
  5. Don’t Say Anything

5 Ways to Argue with Non-Preppers — and Win

Sweet Deal: Bear Grylls has NOTHING on this bug out bag.

Survival Tips for Preppers and Non-Preppers Alike

Our friend Gaye Levy at Backdoor Survival has some great tips on how to deal with prepping naysayers. Read the article below, and be sure to visit Backdoor Survival for more great prepping and homesteading tips!

When it comes to discussing prepping with non-preppers, the conversation can get quite heated. Been there, done that.

I have recently had the pleasure of discussing this topic with blogging colleague, Dan Sullivan. For those of you that are not familiar with Dan, his website is Survival Sullivan and even though it is fairly new, it is one I believe you will enjoy…

These 5 Comebacks Will Win You Every Argument Against Non-Preppers


The fights, arguments, and mockery between us, preppers, and the rest of the world are never-ending. Every once in a while I read an article that makes us look bad for doing something to protect ourselves and our families… and I find that a little bit offensive.

In a world where people kill each other, steal from each other and are just cruel to each other every single day, I find it somewhat annoying that those who choose to prepare are considered crazy.

Of course, the fact that some survivalists make the news by doing something stupid every now and then, that propagates the wrong ideas about preppers (who are often mistaken for survivalists) and… it’s annoying, to say the least running into people who have no idea what they’re talking about.

Still, if you’re going to prepare, you’re gonna run into these types of conversations whether you like it or not so… the comebacks below might help. Just don’t be afraid to use them.

1. Tell Them About Small-Scale Disasters and Emergencies

White dog bite on human arm | How To Argue With Non-Preppers

Unfortunately, preppers have become a punchline for many people. They think we're too paranoid, or that our lifestyle is a waste of money or just plain “weird.” Little do they know how useful and important prepping can really be.

Let’s face reality. As much as we believe in family preparedness and prepping, the majority of our peers think we are nuts. Although we would never tell them that they are the ones that are nuts, we might possibly put up a good argument in favor of preppers.

Prepping is insurance, right? You know it and I know it but the rest of the world? Not so much.

Ask anyone what they think about prepping and words like “Doomsday” and “zombies” immediately come up.

Obviously, this couldn’t be further from the truth as there’s a huge number of smaller-scale disasters for which everyone should prep. Just by enumerating some of them and you can win the argument:

  • Assaults
  • Rapes
  • Electric shocks
  • Being stung by a bee
  • Getting bit by a dog
  • Carbon monoxide intoxications
  • Faints and other medical emergencies
  • Escape a sinking car
  • Bike accidents
  • Escaping hail storms

…and on and on.

If we do the math (which I haven’t, not yet, at least), we can safely assume hundreds of Americans die every single day from these things! 50,000 U.S. citizens die in car crashes every year, that’s 136 souls a day.

One in 36 Americans ends up in the ER each year. These two stats alone show us just how many people put their own lives in danger and it is staggering.


2. “Why Do You Pay Insurance on Your Car?”

Red car crash accident | How To Argue With Non-Preppers

In some cases, you can ask them the same thing about their house. Why do they pay insurance? Is it because they have to or do they really expect their house to catch fire and their car to crash?

Even if they do say they’re paying because they have to, ask them how come they don’t think it’s crazy that literally everyone is paying car insurance and have no problem with it.

You can then go ahead and tell them that prepping is also a kind of insurance, one that you get because you know you have to, without anyone forcing you to do so by law.

To really nail it, you can finish off by telling them that you shouldn’t take precaution measures just because the authorities tell you to, you have to be responsible and assess your own risks, then prepare accordingly.

RELATED: Beware: 17 Types of Preppers You Should Avoid

3. Dig Up Old Stories in Your Town or Neighborhood

Do you know some of your online local news websites? Great. Here’s what I want you to do… Go to Google (or your favorite search engine) and type the following:

site: MyLocalNewsWebsite.com dies OR accident OR horrible

…where MyLocalNewsWebsite.com is the address of your chosen website. You can perform several searches for each of these news websites.

You’re gonna find a huge number of stories of accidents that happened near your home. This just builds on argument #1 when I suggested you talk with them about small-scale disasters.

The difference is you actually dig up those critical events that happened close to you and, if possible, they are also recent. Surely you will find plenty.

For example, during the 12 years, I’ve been living at my current location, I’ve seen two house fires (one of them killed a person). Plus, one little old lady across the street from me got robbed in the middle of the afternoon by some guy who simply jumped her fence.

To these, I might also add the various things that happened to my relatives and friends. Surely you can remember a lot of such stories too, you just need to take your time to think.

The key is to bring the others into your reality and to talk with faith, passion or whatever you want to call it in a way which gets them sucked into your frame of mind.

4. “The Rich Are Doing It!”

Well, they are prepping SHTF! And they’re spending millions of dollars too. If they don’t believe you, point them to this article, for example (there are lots of others, of course).

Obviously, they’re doing it wrong and paying huge amounts of money to screw up, but the fact that they’re well connected and still scared of what’s to come shows that they know something we don’t and that works in your favor.


5. Don’t Say Anything

Woman finger on lips a sign of silence | How To Argue With Non-Preppers

Sometimes it’s just better to not engage in any arguments and leave them thinking whatever they want about you. If they prefer to cling to their own beliefs, that’s their problem. Silence is, sometimes, the best argument you can have.

Ok, those were it. I tried my best to bring you my best arguments but, in addition to them, you can still use these:

  • Talk about hurricanes Katrina and Sandy
  • Tell them about the Ferguson and Baltimore riots
  • And don’t forget to mention those mass shootings that make the news and give us goosebumps every once in a while

The bottom line is you have to talk in an assertive manner: a confident tone of voice, clarity, and self-assurance but without sounding aggressive. Otherwise, you’d just be fitting into their stereotypes.

See, I stopped caring what others think of me a few years back and I couldn’t be happier… because instead of worrying and staying in a constant state of frustration, I finally got the peace of mind.

It then allowed me to focus on what’s important to me as opposed to what’s important to others.

The Final Word

Before closing, I want to say that I too want to fight the battle against fluff! I can’t remember if I have said that publicly before or not.

But, one of my peeves is the proliferation of doomsday blog sites and prepper websites that are either a rehash of government documents or worse, content that has been spun from other sites without attribution.

As I mentioned at the first of the year, I strongly feel that my role as a responsible blogger requires me to share not only my own material but selected articles from other, lesser-known authors that bring value to our niche.

No one person knows 100% about everything and many so-called experts are not experts at all. As far as I am concerned, each of you, as readers, brings something of value to the table and are an expert in your own right.

About Dan and Survival Sullivan

Growing up in a small 2nd world country, Dan learned from a young age to love nature, animals, to live frugally and to appreciate the little things in life. He started writing about survival when he got tired by the lack of quality information and realized people just need the facts.

Dan has declared war on fluff and is winning battle after battle with each article he writes on SurvivalSullivan.com. In addition to his website, you can find Dan on Facebook and Twitter.


Is fear truly a motivator for prepping? This video from Prepared Suburbanite answers that question and more:

Next time, instead of getting upset, angry, and irate, consider these five comebacks that Dan is sharing exclusively with Backdoor Survival. They just might help you win every argument against prepping!

How would you argue with non-preppers, yourself? Share your tips in the comments section of each article and know that the world values your input.

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on September 17, 2015, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.