Requests for research?

Hi, I’ve lurked the site for a while after discovering it on a subreddit some time ago, and I’ve since found it to be the most unbiased, fact-based resource on preparation, like, anywhere. In fact some of the advice here helped me and several friends and their families to ride out the rough early days of the Covid-19 pandemic in relative ease, so thanks for that as well.

On to my question: Is there a way to request research/articles about certain topics that might not have been covered yet but could be useful for the community?

This question is prompted by a pretty recent experience, going to my first protest. I intend to remain apolitical in this forum as per rules, so thats all I’m gonna say about that, but I realized I was woefully underprepared for what could happen at a protest, and ended up scrambling to find clear, accurate, fact-based information on how to neutralize and remove pepper spray from skin as i sat there feeling like my hands, arms, and anything else that hadn’t been covered at the protest were on fire for almost two hours after i got home. I did find a decent solution – letting dawn dish detergent break down the OC oils and then washing it off with cold water, several times i might add, between 5-10, i lost count somewhere along the line.

Anyhow, all that to say, could we get a preparation guide/checklist for protests and rallies, like what to expect, what clothing to wear, how to protect eyes/ears/mouth/nose, what to do in case you come in to contact with pepper spray or tear gas, etc?


  • Comments (16)

    • 11

      It’s not a research driven article, but the Blog post from yesterday includes a tweet w/ a graphic that shows the kind of stuff you would need if you want to safely engage in protests. It includes some of the obvious stuff like full-face respirator and several back up masks + bandanas. It also shows an umbrella incase anything is sprayed at you.

      • 6

        Thanks, I’ll take a look!

    • 10

      regarding the question “On to my question: Is there a way to request research/articles about certain topics that might not have been covered yet but could be useful for the community?”

      I’ve wondered similarly if there was a best way to make suggestions (short of starting a new topic).  I wonder if a ‘poll’ type feature where topics could be nominated and voted up down?  I suppose you could do that informally with the comment up/down votes on a thread like this but it might not be intuitively clear to all.

      Side note: I do appreciate the site!  My comments/suggestions strictly meant in an informative/helpful manner.  Not trying to complain or anything!

      • 10

        Civil feedback, even if bluntly negative, is always welcome Rich! (And I didn’t take it that way!)

        We’ve thought about the poll, but fwiw haven’t done it yet because we’re still mostly guided by the list of “core” topics that aren’t done yet.

        For example, we don’t have many guides yet around food essentials. That’s something we need to do before working on a niche topic.

        So between that list + what’s happening in the world (eg. COVID, civil unrest, natural disasters), the plate has been full.

        Hopefully all you awesome people / this forum can help accelerate that more 🙂

    • 12

      Love it Jack! That’s actually one of the main reasons we launched this new forum — there’s no way our team can know or find everything ourselves, and there’s a ton of helpful people and knowledge in the community. We’re working on some not-yet-live features in the spirit of trying to make a “curated wiki”, but there’s still some stuff to figure out in that regard.

      We pay attention to the topics people talk about here to know what’s on yall’s minds. That determines, combined with our internal editorial team, what projects we focus on. Plus it should help get more projects done more quickly since more people can chip in.

      So just talk about what you want here and we adjust! Love the tip you shared about Dawn dish soap. Keep it coming.

      For example, today we started putting out more posts specifically about advice for last-minute “I’m in a city that’s popping off” preps: https://theprepared.com/blog/unrest-city-time-to-get-ready/

      And this morning we started doing research on things like “does milk wash out tear gas?”, “does insurance cover civil unrest?”, and “even when I’m on my own property, can the government force me inside my home?”

      We do plan on having long, deeply-researched guides for civil unrest, how to protect yourself against CS gas, etc etc and had started collecting that research last year from Hong Kong. We just don’t have it done yet and then this Floyd stuff happened quickly.

      In other words… I thought we’d have a little more time before things got this bad in the world! Scrambling to catch up. Our team quadrupled in size since Feb 1.

      • 8

        Thanks, awesome to hear that y’all have stuff in the works! I’ll be looking forward to it. In the mean time, I’ll check out that link and keep reading stuff.

    • 9

      Hey there! I’m an editor at The Prepared and I’m also based in the center of the Minneapolis unrest. We published this post today, and plan to do more ASAP! https://theprepared.com/blog/unrest-city-time-to-get-ready/

      I’d love to hear more about what you’re interested in reading! Thanks so much for posting!

      • 11

        I think this is topic is one worth having. I also think it can be completely a-politicized by addressing the conditions most frequently encountered in the types of situation (eg., tear gas, pepper spray, or other forms of chemical-based crowd control, etc). Frankly, those are the sorts of things that could be wielded by either side during periods of unrest, so, I don’t think it’s necessary to delve into the who, why, etc. The key is to focus on the facts (eg., what, as Jack suggested in OP, can be used to neutralize the effects of teargas, etc).

        If we approach the topic with an objective, ’30K ft view’ that offers remediation -regardless of whether or not one is actively engaged in such activities or encountering such things while hunkering down, or strategically attempting to leave and area of unrest, the more productive the conversation.

        I’m a firm supporter of the notion that knowledge is power. And I think this is knowledge we could also find useful and informative.

        I checked out @Kelsey’s post, which was well thought and organized. I do, however, have lingering questions (open to all to answer):

        I’m wondering about antibiotics, specifically, procuring them for my kit. My understand is, these usually require a prescription from a doctor. Am I correct? What might be the best way to procure them?

        Many thanks!

        Be well. Be healthy. Keep safe.

      • 10

        Hey Matt! Thanks so much for reading and replying. Hmm… we have a really thorough medical supplies guide, which has answered most of my questions about home prep. Here’s what that guide says about antibiotics:

        Antibiotics are tough because they’re very useful for preppers but require a prescription and are not as universal and you might believe. Years ago we would’ve chosen Keflex (Cephalexin) and Zithromax (Azithromycin) as the best option to stock on your shelf. But they’ve become less effective over time due to antibiotic resistance and abuse, so they’re towards the bottom of the list for long-term prep backups.

        Doxycycline and Bactrim are the two main antibiotic choices we’d recommend for any shelf. They still pack a punch, yet they’re common, apply to a wide range of broad-spectrum problems, and are generally tolerated by most people. Bactrim is the current go-to for treating MRSA Staph infections, for example. The oft-repeated fear of doxycycline becoming toxic when it expires is no longer an issue: The FDA states “testing of the medicine found it is safe to use past the expiration date.”

      • 8

        I don’t think I made it to that post just yet, but I really appreciate the copypasta. Thank you! 😉

        An aquaintance of mine is a pharmacist, so, I’m only somewhat familiar with the efficacy of medications past their expiration date. And I’m not about to go bugging them about medications -much less ask anything of them that would cost them their career.

      • 4

        You can buy fish antibiotics which are the same as the usual ones, Fish Pen, Fish Mox, and so on, made and packaged at the same factories, in 250mg and 500 mg dosages.

      • 4

        Matt, with regards to antibiotics I am in your same situation: I’d love to get my hands on antibiotics but not sure how. I’ve recently saw a post on reddit about someone who just explained to their doctor that they are preppers and would like to responsibly keep extra at home, and their doctor was understanding and gave them a prescription. It seems like worth a try (the worst it could happen is if they say no), but I recently moved states and personally don’t feel I have enough rapport with my current doctor to ask them.

        I also know that you could buy animals antibiotics online (I’m not suggesting you do – and please folks at The Prepared, feel free to delete this comment if you feel it’s pushing the line). The few times I looked at this solution it seemed to me that they are the same compounds, in just different strenghts. If you were to take the same % it’s reccomended for humans I don’t know what would make it unsafe for us. But I am no doctor and before I’d feel confident about trying I would need to do more resarch (which I don’t have time to do right now).

      • 5

        Hello there, I just joined the prepared (yay!) and was trying to learn more about the above question that Haus Monkey had.  Antibiotics are usually listed on SHFT lists but it seems they are non straight forward to acquire.  I’ve read conflicting  messages about pet med use for humans.  If they make it into my first aid kit, I would also need to do the research on safe storage, use and efficacy.  Do you have any guidance or ideas about a proper way to procure and store them?  If this question is out of line, please remove at your discretion – I would like to  be appropriate 🙂  Thanks.

      • 4

        I’ve been wondering about this too!

    • 2

      Jack, you may want to take a look at the post Kelsey just wrote about whether milk helps with pepper spray or tear gas.


    • 4

      I have really not been able to find a good review of portable generators that run on gas that is not a promotion of one company or another. I think it’s going to be a busy hurricane season here, and the power outages are starting up already even with no storms, because of the heat. While I don’t necessarily think The Prepared should have to do a review, if anyone has good links, let me know. I think this is different than the thread about solar generators, but it does dovetail a bit.