So, the town of Berkeley, California, has done something stupid. The City Council has approved a measure that calls the Marine recruiters “unwelcome intruders”, and applauds citizens who “impede… the work of any military recruiting office located in the City of Berkeley.”
By doing this, they’ve drawn national attention — not to mention sharp criticism — and it will almost surely backfire. Anybody who was on the fence about joining the military will surely be offended by the measure; people who were getting ready to join may just travel on up to Berkeley to make a statement by joining there.
To me, it’s like a pastor who shows a pornographic poster and says “Look at this filth!”
So, it’s stupid to try to decrease recruiting by passing a measure like this.
It’s also, of course, stupid to try to decrease recruiting; we need the Marines. Ironically, we need them in order to help defend the right of people like the Berkeley City Council to do stupid stuff just like this. (And can I just say: the Semper Fi Act of 2008, which will take money from Berkeley and give it to the marines, is just a beautiful way to retaliate?)