Self-Defense Is Sexy

Source: Reason
by Matt Welch

“Try as President Ronald Reagan might, American kids of the 1980s were more likely to identify with the Wolverines of Red Dawn than the Contras of Nicaragua. I refused to register with the Selective Service out of fear of being drafted to enforce the Reagan Doctrine. But if the Russkies somehow took California? All Molotov cocktails, all the time. In April, pictures of Ukrainian tanks bearing the graffiti ‘Wolverines’ began circulating online. The built-in sexiness of defense contains lessons far beyond foreign policy. In America, social change often comes after a politician or government goes too heavily on offense against individuals wishing merely to stand their ground and assert their rights. Bull Connor’s fire hoses and George Wallace’s billy clubs helped tilt public opinion toward brave civil rights protesters.” (for publication 07/22)