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The year 2000 problem represents a potentially difficult time for all of us. However, let's not lose sight of the fact that it's a temporary bump (or pothole) in the road--not the end of the world. No one knows what will happen, nor how serious it will be. However, we can and will get through this or any other difficulties, if we all work together.

Many people ask what they can do to protect themselves. Should they go off to the woods, move to another state? Others want to know if they should withdraw their money from the bank. I say No! Why?

There are over 260 million people in this country alone. You think you'll be the only one in the woods? They will all be focused on their own survival, perhaps at the risk of yours. Then there's the larger issue--if everyone leaves, who will be left to keep the communities and cities going? What will be left to come back to?

If 5 percent or less of depositors take their money out of the banks, the banks will close. How does intentionally crippling the financial infrastructure help you, your family or community? How will we be able to rebuild? It's not about 'me' anymore, it's about 'we'; and our individual actions can and will impact everyone, for good or ill.

Individual preparedness is for those who can; community preparedness is for those who can't. What kind of world will be left if the elderly, the poor, the ill and the disabled are abandoned, perhaps to suffer or die? Is that the world we want our children to inherit? The life lesson and legacy we wish to pass on?

Life isn't just survival, it's about living, building and growing; and passing it on to the next generation. The only way to get through this is to pull together and work through it as a community. Problems can't be escaped, they can only be dealt with. If you are concerned about your safety, the best means of securing it is to help your neighbor prepare; and work with your community to develop needed and appropriate plans.

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