Carriers: Tough Moral Choices After TEOTWAWKI

December 6, 2012



“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.

carriers movie 2012

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.

I would say is something of a cross between Contagion and The Book of Eli, but even that is stretching it. Currently Amazon’s rankings has it at 3.5 out of 5 stars.

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.

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8 Comments on “Carriers: Tough Moral Choices After TEOTWAWKI”

  1. mike I Says:

    let me preface first… at some point people will come together and create communities, as as trading posts at 1st but since the beginning of time communitites found strength together… lets take the statements 1by1.. i don’t believe i would trun away a starving mother with a child. i would not kill someone for stealing a tomato? nope i would scare the snot out of them given then something to eat, a pack of tomato seeds and at the worst send them on their way… we are in our 50yrs and no childern… i would not kill but i would try to pursuade or barter… just us


    • Joe Says:

      I agree with you mike I. I think that after a TEOTWAWKI style event, people will eventually begin banding together in small communities and eventually it will grow and spread.

      These are tough questions to address; I think too often as preppers we make decisions in isolation, in the comfort of our living rooms. I think it’s good to consider the fact that the decisions may not come so easily when we actually face them.

      Thanks for the comment.


  2. scrambo Says:

    here is a question that my friends and i have wrestled with. in the event you are about to be detained and taken to a fema camp with the possibility of having your young kids taken from you and being raised in a brainwashed Godless statist environment, what do you do? let it happen or sacrifice yourselves ? If your kids have not reached the age of accountability, and you know they will be raised without the possibility of excepting Jesus Christ as savior, what do you do?


    • Joe Says:

      Another tough question, Scrambo. You’re right, as important as surviving this life is, where we’ll spend eternity is far more important. That’s the best prep you can give your kids.



      • Dee Says:

        I would probably get killed trying to escape with my kids . Eternity is what matters . I would fight and possibly really injure someone to defend my kids ,but kill ? I would not want that on my soul .


        • hawk Says:

          I have no problem killing to defend my family. I don’t think that will condim my soul.

          However I can not harm anyone eating in my garden or field, as long as they do not fill their pockets.


  3. Stu C. Says:

    Alot of good salient points here. along with some very tough questions. Most of us have already identified exactly how far we are willing to go to protect what we hold dear. I know exactly how far I can go when threatened. The big struggle for me (morally at least) is how to keep my conscience and my honor clean in the dark times. Definitely food for thought.


    • scrambo Says:

      sounds pretty paranoid to me…any survivors are going to be in sizeable groups…going forward in a world without antibiotics will require exposure and only the fittest will survive…the gene pool will strengthen…and a few will survive…that is history…we have manipulated it with modern science…


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