Prepare, Sustain, Thrive and Survive Simply

10 Maps About the Best Places to be Free in the US

John Wesley Smith of Destiny Survival interviewed me on his Dr. Prepper blogcast. The show will air this Thursday, 6/20, at 1 PM CT, 11 AM PT. It can be downloaded as an audio file any time afterward from here:

During the interview, I mentioned the maps I’d linked to on my Simple Unhooked Living Facebook page and thought I’d post them here as well so they are easier for people to find.

It seems increasingly important during uncertain times that people who want to practice resourcefulness, self-reliance, and autonomy are free to do so in any way feasible. Unfortunately, the powers that be thwart thrival and survival in a number of crucial ways.

This has happened because we let it. Too many people in the US let themselves get lulled into a technocratic stupor. They stopped paying attention to how the stuff they need gets to them, and they forgot how to take care of themselves. They forgot about the importance of being free. As a result we are a nation of sick and fat tax paying consumers who compensate the rulers to keep us in a state of ignorant dependence.

But more are waking up each day. Many are working toward being independent, skillful, and confident that they can get what they need to survive as mainstream supply chains fall apart. They are learning to take care of themselves and their families by reviving the traditional practices of their ancestors, and mixing it up with new appropriate technologies.

So, the question is, where is the best place to do it?

1. Where Can You Still Build What You Want?

Building your own sustainable home is a big leap toward freedom. Imagine no mortgage and no ridiculous energy bills. But building rules vary widely by county. Some are so draconian they will red tag your project and fine you daily for non-compliance. This is particularly frustrating when counties insist on ruling over building practices they know nothing about, but which have been proven safe and effective elsewhere. Other counties let you build with no permits or under very relaxed terms.

The Pockets of Freedom Map  published by the earthship folks is an ongoing effort to document those counties where building a dwelling is not a bureaucratic expensive quagmire. They encourage you all to help fill in the map by reporting on the situation in your area.

2. What is the Constitution-Free Perimeter?

It’s not every day that a conservative constitutionalist group draws on a study by the American Civil Liberties Union to alert the public to a freedom threat. But left/right concerns about disappearing liberties are converging rapidly and people who want to prevail are learning to get over the divide and conquer mentality. It was the Stevens County Assembly that drew my attention to a (rather old) article published by the ACLU on 12/15/2006, entitled: Are you Living in a Constitution Free Zone? It shows that unconstitutional border security policies affect a huge swath of American citizens.

See the interactive Constitution Free Zone Map of the United States to find out if the Constitution is still the law of the land where you live.

3. Is it Legal to Catch Drips from the Roof?

Water can be expensive to acquire and in many places it’s getting scarce, so catching rainwater seems like a great idea. But here is an article that explains how longstanding water laws in many states make it illegal to “harvest” rainwater.

Here is a map of Rainwater Harvesting Laws published by The National Conference of State Legislatures. Scroll down for details on rainwater and gray water rules, and below that, a table of notable rainwater harvesting legislation for 2012.

4. State by State Review of Raw Milk Laws

If you find a relatively free place to build a house and raise your family in this country, you may also want to milk a cow, goat, or sheep and drink the raw milk. If you are blessed with a bounty of milk, it makes sense to sell some of it, right? But that activity is highly regulated in many states. To get around states’ restrictive raw milk laws, some people started herd share groups.

Check the Raw Milk Nation map  to see where your state stands on raw milk. See how the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund is working to protect your right to grow and eat what you want.

5. Where is it Legal to Teach Your Kids at Home?

You may be in a financial position to teach your children at home rather than subjecting them to institutionalization seven or more hours a day. Some states make it easy and others force you to jump through hoops that can get expensive. The Home School Legal Defense Association website provides summaries of home schooling laws in each state as a benefit of membership. You can look at the map for free.

If you’re planning a thrival and survival move to the boonies and hope to teach the kids at home, look at this State Law Home Schooling Map to determine where you might want to relocate.

6. States With the Firearms Freedom Act

People who live in the country generally have firearms to protect themselves and their property from both two and four legged intruders. As government becomes more and more overbearing, some Americans are thinking they will need guns to protect themselves from tyrants. Whether or not this is feasible remains to be seen. Meanwhile, states are passing firearms freedom laws and mounting legal challenges designed to restrain federal intervention in their constituents’ right to keep and bear arms.

This Firearms Freedom Act map is current as of April 2013. It shows which states have passed gun freedom laws, which ones are considering legislation, and those where nothing has been done.

7. Got Nukes?

If you don’t want to waste a lot of time building a house, raising livestock, and having a family just to ruin it all with radioactivity, you may want to know where the nuclear reactors are.

Check out this entertaining US Nuclear Reactors Map. It has red circles that pop up to see theoretical danger zones from radioactive iodine in the event of an accident.

8. Where it’s Okay to Smoke Pot Now

If you think it’s important to be able to smoke pot for medicinal purposes or otherwise, without losing everything you own, you will want to check the weed laws throughout the US.

The Dramatic Spread of Legal Weed in the U.S. map is a dynamic map that shows progression of marijuana laws from 1970 to the present.

9. Overall Freedom Map

The Mercatus Center tracks and ranks freedom in the 50 states by collecting data on a wide variety of factors from victimless crime incarceration, to minimum wage laws, tobacco freedom, occupational licensing, and much more.

See the fun interactive Freedom in the 50 States map for the five freest states overall, and which ones to stay away from if you value liberty.

10. Where Can One Carry a Knife?

KnifeUp provides a guide to knife laws for all 50 states. To use their map, just click on a state to read about what kinds of knives are legal or not.  Laws do change, so if you spot an error, just leave a comment under the map.

3 comments on “10 Maps About the Best Places to be Free in the US

  1. Pingback: Are You Up to Living the Unhooked Life?

  2. Pingback: More Maps for Freedom Seekers on the Move | simpleunhookedliving

  3. Pingback: The Plan to Herd Everybody into Cities Map | simpleunhookedliving

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