The legions of the hungry and dangerous seem to be on the collective mind of survivalist preppers at this moment in time. We have had two major calamities recently , both earthquakes. I am wanting to go on record as to being sympathetic to starving people but I am intolerant of looters. It could be a fine line to walk if I catch them around my food supply. But come around they will. The good ones and the bad ones. The good ones will want to pay for their food anyway they can that is honorable and the bad ones will be out to take it anyway they can. The bad ones will even hurt you or kill you for your food. And the bad ones are the ones we are looking out for.
The pictures I have seen and the stories I have read are pointing to a quick hit by the looters. They do not seem to mess around with their plans at all. They hit a grocery and knock out the big glass windows and they are in and looting in a heartbeat. The stores in America have big glass windows for the most part. Some in the big cities in the East are windowless and look strange to a boy from Indiana, but the locals seem to get along just fine that way. But it shall be considered an axiom of survival that big windows will be on the way out of our view pretty quick after a collapse. They will start out being boarded up with lumber and then probably go to a masonry set up pretty quick. And it has to be that way. If a store does not take measures to protect it's contents then it will be continuously looted.
Fire will be the most highly regarded method of ripping off a home or a neighborhood. Deer hunting Danny will have his rifle at the ready when the mob comes to take his food and drugs. A Molotov Cocktail will invade his home and he will have to leave or burn or death. If the looters are waiting for him to come out they will get all of his supplies AND his rifle. They will be playing the game to win. Danny Deer Hunter will not impress them at all. After they have killed him they will enjoy his wife and children before going on their merry way to their next victim. I guess the victims could call 911. And for this reason alone I have admonished people to get the hell out of town. You can be a really good prepper but then your home is set on fire and you are out of there! GET OUT OF THE CITIES AND THE BIGGER TOWNS. Jim Dakin makes a point of crying up buying cheap, junk land, Well, it ain't in town! It's out where other folks don't want to be. It's out where the amenities are lacking. It's out where the ground don't grow much but brush and trees. It is not manicured like an English Manor. It is rough crappy land that no one has been particularly interested in. But if you can get it you have a deeded right to be on that ground and to protect yourself from looters and arsonists. You are a property owner and entitled to the full protection of the law, if there is any lawmen around to protect you. And if you can get some type of housing on the land then you can claim castle defense rights, if your state has them. Any old trailer will do to establish you as a castle owner. There is no property assessment needed to have a castle defense. It can be a grungy old house trailer but, be it ever so humble, there is no place like home.
And do not sit in your trailer or cabin or what-have-you and wait for any attack. Get as far from your house as possible when you go on the defensive. Sitting in a home will just make you a better target, a known quantity, located prey. Get out away from it and get some cover and start shooting. Try to make your first shot count. Make some one bite the dirt with your first shot. I believe one of the bloggers calls it the dirt nap. If someone is bitter enough to attack you then stomp their ass as best you can. What did ol' Bill Jordan say? "There are no second place winners."
I would seriously exhort you to have a good watch dog for part of your defense. The noisiest mutt you can find. A dog very prone to barking if it hears or smells something approaching. And don't beat it's ass if it barks and keeps you awake. Go out and see what is bothering it. This dog is your friend and you want to show it some respect. One of my neighbors has a Chihuahua that barks whenever anything approaches the house. Just raises hell! When the offending party goes way from the house it shuts up. Perfect watch dog. And being as how it is a Chihuahua it doesn't eat much. A big bruiser of a dog is more fear inducing than a little Chihuahua but it takes a ton of food to keep them going.
A lot of folks like outdoor lights so they can flip them on and look around if there is suspicious activity. I don't think very much of the lights. Generally they put as much light on the person checking things out as they do an interloper. I call them assassin lights. I prefer lighting up the area AWAY from the house and not the porch where I might be standing. Ain't any sense in giving a concealed sniper a good view of your carcass. That can make you dead. In a grid down situation don't worry about the lights. You will be safe then. As long as you don't go outside carrying a flashlight. Stay alive.