What Are Your Generation’s Chances of Surviving Doomsday?

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Top Tier Gear USA

doomsday generations

Could the year you were born have any bearing on your chances of surviving doomsday? Are there any advantages for one generation over another when it comes to living through some apocalyptic event? Do these labels (Baby Boomer, Generation X, Millennial), that somehow became affixed to relatively random ranges of time, hold some clue as to whether or not you and a bunch of your high school buddies could make it through a zombie apocalypse or invasion of mutant bikers from mars?

I was thinking about this topic from the singular perspective of my sometimes least favorite generation the other day: Millennials. Sometimes they are called Generation Y, but no matter what they are called in the media, their collective praises are sung at such high levels, in every facet of our society of how important this latest generation is to our country, planet and probably the entire universe as well. The Millennial generation has received so much attention over the years that at times it nauseates me. If you didn’t know better you would swear anyone who wasn’t a millennial was both stupid and had purposely made a mess out of everything from the paper clip industry to education to race relations and the planet. Thank God we finally had Millennials to save us from ourselves.

No, I am not a millennial.

But this has been going on for a relatively long time of several years and there wasn’t some new event that prompted me to think about them although it could have derived from some conversation in the office I work during the day. The company I work for (yes I have a real job too) has a vested interest in making Millennials happy so I am forever hearing what the Millennials like and don’t like. What motivates Millennials and what inspires them, what they prefer in a job and their thoughts on giving back to the community to the point where I simply don’t care what happens to these people to a great extent anymore. After a little too much of this I started to think of a way to excoriate them in the Prepper Journal.

Instead of just looking at this one generation though, I thought it might make sense to step back and look at the three largest or most influential generations we have going right now, Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials and see which of them would have the best chances of surviving doomsday. So, mustering all of the highly anecdotal evidence I can; here is what I believe the results would look like if we faced a TEOTWAWKI disaster. For the record, this is not a scientific article, just in case that wasn’t clear.

what are baby boomers chances for survival?

You don’t get to be in your 60s usually without learning a lot of life’s lessons; some of them the hard way.

Baby Boomer Prepper odds of survival

Born between the years 1946 and 1964 – currently aged 51 to 69

Baby boomers have a lot of things going for them. Generally speaking they no longer have children at home to worry about or if they do, most of them are pretty self-sufficient in the respect that they can fend for themselves if need be and they are so inclined. Baby boomers are looking forward to retirement even if the economy has put their plans on hold for a little while. Houses are largely if not completely paid off for a lot of boomers and some have more than one property.

Most of the big purchases we make in life are already acquired by the time you reach this age so Baby Boomers have a little more disposable income. They also have the benefit of being old enough to remember a good bit of life without the modern conveniences we have today. Even if their parents, “the Greatest Generation” pampered them to the point of enabling societal changes we might not agree with, by and large they have benefited from a good degree of hard work. I think this along with the historical long-view of a well-lived life gives boomers an advantage. They have seen what works and what doesn’t and for those who are awake to the goings on of the society around them, prepping makes sense. You don’t get to be in your 60s usually without learning a lot of life’s lessons; some of them the hard way.

However, age does have its drawbacks. While Baby boomers might be able to afford more time spent training or learning new skills, or making larger purchases of prepping supplies, they also have more health issues associated with age. One study called Baby Boomers, the Sickest Generation with higher rates of Obesity, High Cholesterol, Diabetes and Hypertension. In addition to requiring more medication, parts start failing you the older you get. Some of the most common surgeries for Baby boomers are Knee Replacements, Angioplasty, and Hip replacement. Not good news for a group of people who may be forced to walk long distances in a bug out scenario.

Could Generation X have a leg up when it comes to surviving disaster

Generation X should not suffer from as many of the health issues of their Baby Boomer parents, but aren’t as spry as they once were either.

Generation X Preppers

Born between the years 1964 and 1980 – currently aged 35 to 51

Generation X is the forgotten generation. I say that because I am one of them and with all the attention focused on Baby Boomers retiring and the needs of the Millennials my generation has been rendered largely irrelevant it seems in the eyes of just about everyone. Pew research calls us America’s neglected middle child and that is what it feels like sometimes. However, this really isn’t an issue that keeps me up at night because I, like a lot of my fellow Gen X’ers are too busy at this stage of our life to care. Generation X is the typical quasi middle-aged group and we have our own set of strengths and weaknesses. Finally done with the more self-absorbed time of their lives, people in this generation are focused on protecting their families, growing their wealth if that is possible and are generally more aware of the world around them.

For Generation X preppers, we tend to be well along into careers with a somewhat stable life. Instead of partying every night, we are most likely at home watching TV. We have made it through the “wild times” of our younger days and have gained a little perspective and hopefully wisdom. Generation X may have children still living at home, but depending on where they fall on the scale, their ages might be all over the map. Prepping for family members is more of a focus for this generation. Most Gen X’ers do not have a remote property or enough disposable income to go hog-wild into prepping.

Generation X is coming into a more stable time of their lives financially if they have been lucky to weather the economic storms from the last 6 years and stocking up, while it isn’t easy may be more possible than someone still struggling through college or raising babies. Generation X people should not suffer from as many of the health issues of their Baby Boomer parents, but aren’t as spry as they once were either. Eyesight starts to go during this age and you learn you can’t eat what you used to be able to and quickly lose weight.

Will Millennials even know when disaster hits?

What will the highly functioning Millennial do in a world without Google to search for the answers to their questions?

The Millennial Prepper’s chances of surviving TEOTWAWKI

Born between the years 1980 and 2000 – currently aged 15 to 35

The Millennial generation is characterized by traits that our society views now as highly desirable. Often described as a product of the electronic age they have grown up in, Millennials are multi-taskers, connected via the internet to all their friends, all the time and are tech-savvy. Probably because they have been plugged into some device since they were born. With a world that has electricity, internet and no major problems, these skills seem to be great resume enhancements.

Millennials shouldn’t have any health issues at this point in their lives that couldn’t be cured by getting outside every once in a while, but their reliance on technology could be a huge factor if that is taken away suddenly. What will the highly functioning Millennial do in a world without Google to search for the answers to their questions? What will the young, technologically savvy person do if GPS doesn’t work or the car won’t start? Could this dependence on technology be a hindrance to their survival? Could the same children that were raised on a lifestyle of “Everybody wins” sports teams with helicopter parents who always took care of their every need pull themselves up and do what is necessary to survive or would they sit back and cry “unfair” at any slight that doesn’t go their way?

Just the Facts  Please

I know that the descriptions above are highly stereotypical and are even more they are very subjective. Every single person doesn’t fit into the broad categories above and I know for a fact that your chances of survival come down primarily to what you have inside yourself more so than what a lot of marketing guru’s say about you or your peers.

Knowing that each and every person is unique, I tried to find a better data point that would help me determine which Generation would have the best chances of surviving doomsday. The only objective data I could pull was from the actual viewers of the Prepper Journal so I measured the demographic information through analytics for the last two years. The results were a little surprising to me.

For the last two years May 13 to May 15 (over 6.2 million views)

  • 27% of the total Views were from people aged 55-older (Boomers)
  • 40.95% of the total Views were from people aged 35 – 54 (Generation X)
  • 31.1 % of the total Views were from people aged 18 -34 (Millennials)

So what does this tell me? I had expected that the overwhelming majority of our page views would be from people roughly my age and older but the demographics were very similar across the generations. I had expected the self-absorbed Me Me Me generation, of which 2 of my children belong, would be absent from any site that dealt with concepts like this. I thought that people their age would not care or even think about survival and by extension, their absence would be some verification that they don’t take issues like prepping for disasters seriously. I was wrong.

I have said before that you can’t be too old to prep and I do believe that virtually anyone can take steps to give themselves a better chance, no matter what the disaster turns out to be in your life. If I can measure anything from the data above, it is that people from all the generations are curious about learning the subject of  prepping. Logic would say that everyone is trying to be more prepared and that every generation more or less is equipping themselves with knowledge. Their readership of sites like this one and tons of others suggests they already have the will to survive.

I guess I need to also say that you can never be too young to prep either. I shouldn’t write off a generation of people, largely based on what marketing or the experts tell me. From the youngest grade-school age child to the most senior among us, there are people from all walks of life interested in prepping and that gives me great hope for our future.

Perhaps if something happens we will stop referring to different ages by labels and share a trait more powerful than marketing demographics. Maybe we will all be able to survive as one generation.

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Contributed by Pat Henry of The Prepper Journal.

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  • Jesus must increase

    I sat down one time and calculated all of the various chronic medical conditions in America, and then by the side of that the numbers of people on medicine for it. It included heart conditions, COPD, asthma, cancers of various kinds, type 1 Diabetes, etc. Then I added up all of the people of various mental conditions like schizophrenia, depression, and other mood disorders.

    Then I considered how many people were mentally disturbed, had conditions that required them to be institutionalized. I added up all of the people in nursing homes as well.

    Then I added up all of the drug addicts. There’s a ton of them, either in recover, or not, due to the very high rate of recidivism.

    Then I added up all of the people who were ex-cons as well as those who are currently in prison. To this number I added up the sex offenders (an unbelievable number really).

    I read up on statistics on the average amount of food in people’s homes based upon how often the frequency of grocery shopping. Then I calculated how much was in freezers versus canned, and the amounts were so shockingly low, that it was scary.

    Few people prep, and most who claim to be preppers actually have very little common sense, supplies, or skills.

    Based upon all of that, figure massive deaths from something like a pandemic or EMP, strictly based upon the first week without water. Rioting, looting, massive civil unrest would occur. Great urban migration would result in horrific mayhem, violence, and murder as desperate urban dwellers fled only to run out of gas in a new urban zone due to backed up traffic. The rest would flood perceived safety in rural areas, buy up what remained in groceries and drugstores, dooming those inhabitants who were there. For the horde would be such a strain on law enforcement and use up supplies, that this would ruin those rural inhabitants.

    Survival as preppers means being very far from potential horde migration patterns from the Atlantic Seaboard. If not very far away based upon the average tank of gas from this area, and the likely amount of food travel, then even if you prepped well, unless you were very far off the main roads, it would affect you.

    The few who survived that mess would be the ones with adequate water and supplies, but I took into account being flooded with friends and neighbors who would seek safety and put a major drain on even the best supplies. The attrition would be enormous.

    Depending upon the season, and what gardening and the homestead is producing (for the worst would be Winter on foot and no wild edibles and no gardening), you could see massive depopulation.

    Americans are largely obese, and those fat calories can help temper being on food rations, but a lot of people would die from bad water, contagion, dehydration, doing far more work than normal and spurring on heart attacks, running out of medicine, etc.

    Realistically rapid dieoff from dehydration followed by starvation, prepper deaths from inadequate pantries and too many people additionally taken care of, loss of livestock such as to permanently cripple breeding. Maybe 5-10 % of the population would be left.

    • molon_labe

      I applaud you for your hard work in this comment. What is truly sad is that is most of America, fresh water is fairly abundant. And yet very few people know even the basics of water purification. It literally takes a few moments of your time and yet most would rather bury their head in kim kardashians ass and a football game.

      • Jesus must increase

        Under collapse conditions, the water quality will begin to diminish across water utilities due to Just-in-Time inventory practices. The amount of chlorine on hand is usually 14 days. Which means if the supply chain is disrupted, then in as little as two weeks, the water purification that arrives via tap would degrade.

        Water is heavy, and you would have to cart it back. A gallon weights 8.34 pounds. Figure a family of four needs a gallon per person, two quarts for drinking water, plus cleaning and sanitation and cooking meaning a total of a gallon. That’s hauling from a water source 33.36 lbs and then getting it home. How far away is the closest water source from your home?

        Most freshwater sources are heavily contaminated with agricultural runoff, weedkiller, fertilizers, animal feces, etc. In addition you’d have high bacterial counts and potentially parasites and amebic dyssentry.

        While it’s not difficult to sanitize water with bleach or pool shock, most people use scented bleach today which won’t work. Bleach loses it’s effectiveness over time for purification.

        However the chemicals in the water that I mentioned above can’t be purified from the water in this manner. Some can’t even be distilled from the water even if you had a way to distill it.

        While one could dig a well, most people don’t know how to do it. Few understand how to create a mechanism to wind it up to lessen the amount of work needed. In addition, you’d need a biosand filter, because no doubt since there is no sanitation, then fecal matter would seep into the wells.

        Which means the vast amount of the populace wouldn’t have any access to water, for it would require going out and encountering others, hauling it back, purifying it, and only then using it. It’s not realistic to conclude that many would survive that process.

        While many have hot water tanks of 40 gallons, that would go fast. Not only that, but spillage would occur. Chances are high that many have rust clogging the drain spigot. Some foolish people would try filling up bathtubs and drinking that water. Tubs and drains have among the highest bacteria counts in homes, and this would no doubt result in terrible diarrhea spreading through the household.

        • berrybestfarm

          Not to mention that our rainwater is now toxic. Been off grid on it for 5 years. It is eating holes in my metal roof, leaves an oily residue in my water pot for humidifying on my wood stove and the neighbors horses will not drink it.

  • Jesus must increase

    Millenials are the least likely to survive. This is logical really. Many in this category have no disposable income upon which to prep. They also are less likely to own weapons for that reason. A very high percentage are living with mom and dad. Fewer are married than in history but many are single moms. That means they’ll have the burden of children potentially, won’t be as able to flee. They’ll have less obesity, which helps for hiking, but less fat calories to help them smooth out starvation. Diabetes Type 1 reveals itself under stress at puberty. Some of this group don’t know they have Diabetes yet, and would struggle to survive before eventually succumbing.

    Gen X might or might not survive, largely based upon prepping, but many of these have the illnesses I mentioned earlier. They do have more disposable income, but largely they’re broke. Even a single month without income means being unable to eat. Many have no practical skills.

    Baby Boomers are very sick, more obese, but more money. They also have a higher chance of ancestral skills. There’s a higher chance of prepping, though merely by having fuller pantries. Since Gen X and Millenials might flee to Baby Boomers, then it’s a mixed bag. Some might be cared for by their offspring due to multiple preexisting conditions without medications. Lots of people living off the larder of a retired couple won’t work very long. Even if they have a garden, it takes a long time from planting to harvest, and it’s contingent upon the growing season (some have two cold crops periods plus summer, others have a very abbreviated growing season). Which means many would die before they could harvest any calories in sufficient quantity.

    People think they could hunt, but too many people shooting off guns and tramping through the forests and meadows would be liable to kill too many animals that shouldn’t be taken, scare the rest, and diminishing returns even two weeks once starting that culling. That would ruin the game animal population for the next year.