A Primer on Personal Strategy

Years of experience and considering all options leads to the conclusion that underground storage of properly conditioned firearms in suitable hermetic or vented containers provides a safe, secure and virtually undetectable means to keep firearms. Even under the most oppressive regime imaginable. Once your firearms are stored safely outside your home and off your property, you will be free to continue your shooting interests and traditional way of life. Within limitations.

If properly executed, risks associated with underground storage can be negligible or non-existent if you choose. There is a wide range of strategies which allow you to balance your shooting activity against your ability to accept or to not accept a particular degree of risk at any given time.

For example, consider the situation once your firearms are safely in the ground. No longer will you hold firearms in your home or on your property. This relieves you from fear of seizure of property, arrest or charges. Authorities can search you all they want (but can't because the law protects you against unreasonable searches), but wouldn't find anything anyway.

It is not difficult to see that once underground, you will be free to enjoy possession of any and all firearms of your choosing. So long as you do not register your guns.

You can choose to prepare your firearms for Long Term Storage (LTS) and dig them up only when we have a new and reasonable government in Ottawa. In this case, the degree of risk to you is non-existent. You can rest a free man and wait and work for better days. This buys time, which right now the firearms community badly needs.

Or, once your firearms are secure in LTS, you can decide to test the water, crack out a gun or two, and go shooting! A series of small underground storage sites at any number of your favourite shooting and hunting locales can be built up over time into quite an extensive personal system. As time goes on, it will become easier and easier to move firearms between sites. And as you acquire more and more sites and more firearms, the need to move firearms between sites will become less and less, till eventually you won't need to move any at all. You can zero a rifle off-season, prepare it for Short Term Storage (STS) at your chosen hunting locale, and dig it out just before opening day. You go out carrying no gun, and come back with your legal kill - and that's all.

Underground storage reduces your exposure to risk of seizure and arrest from 365 days to as little as one or two days a year or nothing at all if you so choose. And even on these few days when you may be moving guns from one site to another, the risk to you is still immeasurably smaller than if you keep or conceal your guns at home. You, not the authorities, have strategic control of the time and place and method that you choose to reposition firearms.

A great deal can and will be written about personal strategies and tactics for the use and enjoyment of firearms stored at underground sites. It is not difficult for you to develop an effective personal strategy. But overall, there is no denying risks can be minimized or eliminated as you choose, and tailored to your individual needs and the local situation at any given time.

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Scott Ostrander: scotto@cica.indiana.edu