What is our mission statement? It is a set of ideals and foundations we utilize and build upon to accomplish our goals, better ourselves, and better the world around us. These precepts have a long lineage far before CAIII% was a unified group. In an interview with our prior State Leader (SL), and current State Training Officer (STO), Andrew Joyce, he said, "He knows this mission statement has been around for a very long time in one form or another." According to Zone 4 Leader (Z4L) Eddie Schuyler when interviewed, he stated, "There were many hands instrumental in the formation of our mission statement." Put quite simply, our mission statement is as follows: Self, Family, Community. Our mission statement is ordered by sequence and priority. Let's dig a little deeper.
What is Self? Well... literally, this means one's self. Firstly, let's discuss a little real world application. There is a purpose to first responders making sure they survive a dangerous situation first, it is the priority. The reason they prioritize their own survival is because if they don't and they are injured or killed, they and their victims now need to be rescued. If they do not firstly take care of themselves not only will they be ineffective to help those in a situation they are responding to, but they will add to the crisis making themselves a victim now needing yet another first responder to render them aid. This is shown by beach lifeguards, they are instructed that when rescuing a victim and a wave is about to throw the guard and victim into a rocky jetty they are to place the victim in between themselves and the rocks. They are to prioritize their own survival, if they do not, then two people could die instead of one person sustaining injuries that can later be attended to.
What is the first thing we do when we get up in the morning? We shower, we eat breakfast, we dress ourselves, etc.. We prepare ourselves for the day. Preparation is key in many other instances in life, and in reference to our organization. Z4L Eddie emphasized, "Self is the foundation to be built upon. If you can't take care of yourself you won't be useful to your family or your community." I must first be prepared in myself having the capacity to give of myself to others if I wish to benefit my family. If I have done a good job taking care of myself I will be well prepared, having much ability and high morale to lend of my gifts to those around me. If I have done a poor job caring for myself, my ability to care for and help others will be wholly diminished. If I were to stand guard in the military having not slept the previous night, there is a high probability I will fall asleep at my post, and result in my superior stomping their boot knee deep into my face. Everyone has their own way of taking care of self. Personally, if my spiritual condition isn't being maintained my life slowly begins falling apart, sometimes quickly. If I don't have a close relationship with God (the God of Israel), speaking to Him often and spending time in His Word, I tend to see that distance from God manifest as turmoil in my life. A good spiritual connection leads me to as close to heaven on earth as I'll get this side of the living. Again, this is a big part of MY taking care of self, yours may indeed be different. This is the foundation, without self the mission statement will surely not be achieved.
The second principle in the statement is Family. Family has a few different meanings depending on who you ask. Speaking on this STO Andrew said, "(he) considers all of us in CAIII% to be one big family," therefore we fall into the family category of our mission statement. This viewpoint was exactly shared by Z4L Eddie, "(he) considers CAIII% as part of his family." Family is my relatives; my wife, my children, my brothers, my sisters, and/or my parents, etc., but I also consider my close friends to be pretty much family, especially CAIII%. In the organization our bond is almost a kinship that connects us, even though I haven't met all the CAIII%ers I feel like we have been friends forever. Our like-minded ideals, shared goals, common path, and similar world view do more than just give us conversation points, they forge one heart and destiny together. Speaking on this Z4L Eddie said, "We are not just a facebook page, we are a group from top to bottom that is devoted to these ideals." We come into this group initially seeking out friends that think the same as we do. We are looking for allies, but we find something much deeper than this in our CAIII%er brothers and sisters. We find family. This is the next foundational level of our mission statement, having taken care of my "self" well, doing the things I need to do to be successful in life, I can now focus on taking care of my family in the home. I cannot spend all my time at work or even in social groups and be fully successful or fulfilled, I must nurture a well maintained home life and family. I must be faithful in attending to my family's needs and wants. They say, "Happy wife, happy life." It is true that if the home isn't right, nothing outside the home can be right. The effective family is the model for order, and conversely the dysfunctional family is the model for disorder. Take for example the classical nuclear family, everyone has an integral part that effects the solidarity and function of the entire family. From the father leading and protecting, to the mother nurturing and supporting, to the children respecting and obeying their parents, when all are in harmony there is joy and the family thrives. If the father spends too much time at work neglecting his wife and children, there is a rift that can grow and cause division and turmoil within the family, problems like this can cause deep distress and crisis within each individual in the family. Thus such as "self", "family" must be tended to dutifully to foster success and to thrive in the final aspect of our mission statement, "community". Without these first two aspects to build upon, we cannot hope to achieve anything in our communities. These first two ideals must be building blocks that are well seated in order to place the final piece in our mission statement.
Finally, the pinnacle of the Mission Statement of a CAIII% Member is Community. With a solid foundation beginning in our hearts, then continuing into the care of the ones we love immediately around us, we can ultimately turn our attentions outward into the world around us, from our doorways all the way to the ends of the earth. This is where the equation gets very big, if I want to affect positivity in my world I am right with myself, with my family, and I can, therefore, do right by anyone and everyone I might have direct or indirect contact with. This is the moment where our principles, our rudimentary convictions, our righteous way of life can move mountains. Our community can be very widely interpreted, when asked STO Andrew said, "If there are two buildings on fire, one has some socialist antifa (member) in it and the other has a(n) (american) patriot in it, we don't choose the patriot, we choose both. We reach out to those in need regardless of their beliefs." This is exemplified by our direct and attentive focus in forming and organizing Disaster Response Teams (DRT), long before you see us fighting in the streets you will see us sifting through rubble in hope of pulling the hand of our fellow man from turmoil and/or emergency. Both STO Andrew and Z4L Eddie reflected on the 2018 CA Fire Season. Andrew remarked that during those wildfires many of our members saddled up and drove in to render aid to CAIII% and non members of those communities alike. When needed we sacrificed to help our fellow man, rendering aid and supplies where we could. Eddie recounted that fire season, that the supply drops and relief action exhibited all three aspects of our mission statement. Eddie spoke in depth on this, "Community is volunteerism and community service. (Community is) civic activity, being involved with local goverment, (and) attending city council meetings." He also said, "Community activity grows membership, 'birds of a feather flock together'." Eddie continued, "We are not just a facebook page, we are a group from top to bottom that is devoted to these ideals!" As I've said before, everyone will have a slightly different interpretation of our mission statement. In my experience these guiding principles are a cornerstone and framework who's benefits can never be overstated.
Personally, I spend quite a bit of time, energy, attention, and resources in preparing for success here with these three aspects of the statement. My world view and personal way of life lined up very closely with our mission statement, before I knew about it. Taking into account the intuitive nature I assume most people identify with the statement personally. I go to work, I pay my bills, I clean my house, I am able to protect myself, I can feed myself, I have access to potable water, I am appropriately clothed to withstand the elements and daily requirements of my life, I have a roof over my head, I prepare contingency plans for failures in the systems in my life, I commune daily with my God in some way, I seek to be peaceable with all men (and women), and I try to take time to rest and recuperate when I need to. This is a short list, but this just to show that my "self" must be a priority, and one that I must take seriously. I'm all for selflessness, so I must first build up a self that if I am compelled to, I can give of. Having found successes with self, I then am available, willing, enthusiastic, about pouring love, time, and attention into the lives of my family. I classify family into two subcategories, relatives and friends that are basically relatives. I think anyone honest with themselves would admit that their spouse, children, siblings, parents, etc. come first in most, if not all, circumstances outside of "self". If there are issues my first thought is of my wife, then other immediate family members, but once they are confirmed to be safe and sane my mind instantly goes to my close circle, my "fr-amily", so to speak. I say this to iterate that I look to my blood, and very shortly after that my close friends, before I am going to the local town hall to see what good I can do on that larger scale. Though, this is a specifically personal distinction, and again, everyone might look differently at where the boundaries within the mission statement exactly line up in their personal lives. Now, once I am solid in self and my family is squared away , I then look to the world around me beyond the home where I can be of use, where I can build positive and fruitful relationships. I myself am a younger man of 30 (at the time of this writing), for me I am very focused on my self and family at the moment, most of my community activity is aspirational. I try to be active in our organization, in my church, and I try to build good relationships with my LEOs (specifically because I work in security and it could help me on the job). I vote and speak out politically with those I come in contact with. In the future I hope to do much better in this part of the mission statement, I hope to get much more involved with my church, with my community politics ie. city council meetings, school boards, etc., as well as any other community civic and/or social involvement. Community is very important to me. Community is how we turn the tide to the fights we are fighting; drugs, violence, gangs, political abuses, and other local or national issues. Our battles are won or lost contingent upon our faithful pursuit of our mission statement. Unwavering dedication is paramount to accomplishing our mission.
As California Three Percenters we take the steps to be part of something much bigger than ourselves. We look outside ourselves and seek out our like minded peers and kindred spirits. We strive to better the world around us being the change we would like to see in the world. Though, to realize this goal me must first focus on the home. Our mission statement; Self, Family, and Community is a vital part of what we do and who we are, it is a guiding light. If our mission statement resonates with you, maybe you are one of us. I look forward to meeting you all as we steadfastly trudge this road to a brighter future together. God bless you, God bless the CAIII%, and God bless America. From the by-laws of the CAIII%:
MISSION STATEMENT Self, Family, Community We are a gathering of like-minded patriots with the desire to serve, protect and improve our communities and country. You can help us by: 1. Self. Take care of yourself first. We cannot serve and protect others without making ourselves a priority. This goes along with the first two pillars of our group: moral strength and self-readiness. Seek out opportunities to improve yourself, train, and always be prepared. 2. Family. Take care of our families/loved ones. Providing resources for them, keeping them safe from harm, learning necessary skills to create a safe, survivable environment for them. This can include prepping, first aid training, and survival readiness. 3. Community. We are here to serve our community! Get involved, provide safety when necessary, and lend a hand to fellow brothers and sisters. Partnering with local resources to find avenues in which to get involved allow all of us to promote a positive message about our group and grow as a community.
"Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness"