“The rules are simple. At least that’s how my brother sees it. One, avoid the infected at all costs. Their breath is highly contagious. Two, disinfect anything they’ve touched in the last 24 hours. Three, the sick are already dead, they can’t be saved. You break the rules, you die. You follow them, you live. Maybe.”
With that, the 2009 film Carriers, staring Chris Pine, begins. The story is of four young adults in their late teenage years or early 20’s. But this is not the carefree world that many young adults enjoy; this is a world where a virus has ravaged much of the U.S., killing the majority of the population in a slow and agonizing manner.
The four are trying to reach a childhood vacation spot fondly remembered by two brothers. They hope against hope that they’ll be safe in their childhood get-away.
Along the way, they see what society left behind. Barren streets, abandoned vehicles, and darkened homes without electricity are all that remains.
They encounter a few others along their journey. Some are good people infected with the deadly disease with no where to go. They are lepers and outcasts struggling to survive or to find help. Others, like the four cross-country travelers, are just trying to survive the outbreak any way they can.
As pure entertainment, the movie was ok if you are into the these kind of semi-dramatic, semi-horror movies. Calling it purely either would be a mislabel. It’s not a horror movie. It’s not a good drama, either. So, I’m not sure how to label it.
The film is replete with moral decisions that the traveling crew must face. The rules at the beginning sound simple, but when there is a face associated with the rule, where a loved one or a child embodies the rule, the decision is much less academic, much more complex.
The Take-Away for the Prepper
A preppers, we take our preparations seriously. We buy the supplies that we believe will help us survive during tough times. We have medical supplies. We have a food. We have ammunition. We strive add to our knowledge and skill sets so that we can make it when and if TEOTWAWKI ever visits our part of the world.
And in abstract, we have ideas and plans for how we’ll handle others who haven’t prepared. Others, who, instead of buying supplies, choose to buy large screen televisions or new luxury vehicles. Others, who choose to ignore the ever-growing evidence of an impending TEOTWAWKI and live life as if there was no tomorrow.
Yet in reality, should TEOTWAWKI ever come, it won’t be so easy.
- Will you really turn away a starving mother and her two children? Turning them away means almost certain death to them. Yet taking them in will effectively be taking food from your own children’s mouths.
- Will you really shoot someone trying to steal a tomato from your garden? Not doing it will invite him and others to come back an pillage all you have worked so hard to grow, yet killing a hungry man over a tomato seems extreme.
- What will you do when your supplies run low? Will you forcibly take from others, becoming the very person that you’ve planned to defend yourself and your possessions from? Or will you watch as your kids slowly waste away?
These are tough questions. And though Carriers didn’t bring up these questions specifically, it does give you something to think about.