Civil unrest is common in the world, it always has been and always by degrees. Civil unrest can turn into rioting, looting, bombings and marches on governmental buildings. Peaceful protests in many people’s minds can enact changes, and it does on occasion, but sometimes demonstrations cannot enact change. Once failure becomes obvious people become angrier and soon civil unrest boils over and takes it to the next level.
Studies have been conducted throughout history as to the causes of civil unrest. Taxes are too high, taxes for some are to low, jobs are scarce and certain public policies cause people to take to the streets. Now it seems that some people make too much money while others make considerably less, and this causes civil unrest as well.
What causes civil unrest to turn into a civil war? Food is the cause or more precisely the lack thereof. Food insecurity that can be caused by any number of things such as droughts, wars, poor governmental management, costs of food and the list goes on. If the results are a food shortage or lack of access due to pricing then you have civil unrest that can turn into a civil war (Paveliuc-Olariu).
You as a citizen are granted equal access not guaranteed equal results. However, some do not understand or refuse to understand this, so dependency on a governmental fiscal policy that may very well collapse at some point will mean millions will not have access to food because certain programs will not be available.
It may not be so much a food shortage but the access to good food that may become the problem. No matter what happens some will always have access to food, but how much access? Some countries have learned that keeping the population underfed and uneducated, as well as, unarmed is a way of controlling the people.
People in the United States of course cannot fathom this, why do the people not rise up you ask. One reason is that the governments in some of these countries have had thousands of years to perfect their system. The people are malnourished, uneducated and any revolt is dealt with immediately and harshly. There are no peaceful demonstrations that lead to change in government policies.
There will be a trigger, something that sets it off and then there is no turning back. No one knows what will trigger it, or when it might happen. Some believe the trigger will be a collapse of the welfare and overall entitlement system, a collapse, because of the failure of fiscal policies in Washington D.C. Failure to act when the problem is obvious is more than incompetency.
This article is not making judgments, however. Judgments will be left to others, but the sheer number of people that would be affected if the welfare and entailment system as a whole collapses would be staggering.
Unless money is no object then you are aware of the food prices in this country. They never seem to go down, it is always up and of course, wages never keep up, in fact, they have went the other direction for many people.
Food could conceivably get to the point where most of it is unaffordable for the average person. Food supplement programs would not be able to keep up. The facts are as a country the United States cannot simply afford to pay for everyone’s dinner forever, there is no denying this. This may be the trigger as some have predicted, because the government may simply say the money is all gone, so then what for the millions upon millions that rely on that money to eat.
Civil War may be closer than we all think, so what does this mean for you. It may be too late to change what would cause it to happen the only thing you can do is prepare for the effects of it.
More people lack access to clean drinking water then they do food on a daily basis. The numbers are staggering in both cases, but it shows what the priorities are. You always hear of starvation around the world and hungry children right in our own country. You hear of famines caused by droughts. You do hear about the lack of access to clean water but not as much.
Unemployment, higher food prices, government debt, collapse of the welfare system and government incompetency all bubbling and boiling together may cause an explosion that triggers civil unrest that can turn into a civil war.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics , in 2013 among the 34.4 million families with children, 88.2 percent had at least one employed parent in 2013. One parent unemployed means less money, less food on the table, anxiety over providing food for the family is on the rise (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics , 2013).
People take their food seriously, and some will kill to get enough for themselves and their family. Theft of food is on the rise, because the cost of food is on the rise. People are becoming desperate, and it may not be so much the lack of food, but the perception that food at some point will not be available to most people.
What lengths would you go to get food for your children, your spouse or partner? Your answer is all you need to understand about how deadly a civil war over food would be become if everyone were doing what he or she needed to do to feed their families. A starving person is never a good citizen in the minds of those in charge. A parent will go to any length to feed their starving child will this too make them a bad citizen then.
In the beginning, you would have the authorities against the people but soon the authorities would realize they are people too and they need to feed their families as well. Local governments will collapse quickly, causing even greater shortages, but soon it would be a complete lack of food.
Given all that you have read what, do you think your priorities will be?
Paveliuc-Olariu, C. (n.d.). Retrieved from Paveliuc-Olariu C., 2013 Food scarcity as a trigger for civil unrest. AAB Bioflux 5(3):174-178.: http://www.academia.edu/5334114/Food_scarcity_as_a_trigger_for_civil_unrest
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics . (2013). Retrieved from http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/famee.pdf