A crippling ice storm that left Travis Maddox and thousands of other Missouri residents without power in 2007 had an “almost apocalyptic feel to it.”
“No one could move. It just shut the whole region down for two weeks. I wasn’t as prepared as I thought,” said Maddox, a burly man of 43, sporting a long black beard, T-shirt, cargo pants, and baseball cap, while tending his garden.
Those two weeks made Maddox realize that being prepared—“prepping,” as it’s called today—was the key to a life of self-reliance and personal freedom.
As an Eagle Scout, he never forgot the Boy Scout motto: Be prepared.
“To me, the ultimate level of prepping is being self-sufficient. You’re still being modern, but you’re in control,” Maddox told The Epoch Times on Aug. 5.
In 2009, Maddox launched his YouTube channel, “The Prepared Homestead,” which now has over 32,000 subscribers.
People, he said, are waking up to the worsening reality of supply chain disruptions and food shortages, and rapid political and social changes that all point toward “a perfect storm” just ahead.
The COVID-19 lockdowns and empty store shelves only served to heighten popular sentiment that the “old normal” is gone, he said.
“When the pandemic struck, we started seeing all this panic buying,” Maddox said. “What’s really increased is the number of people that contact me. These are really personal emails. They’re not crazy extremists. These are single moms, elderly people, disabled people, regular working people. They’re realizing that things are changing. They can just feel things are changing rapidly,” he said.
“The riots [of 2020] were bad. The election was bad. Now what’s happening is the whole world is starting to change.”
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