You can be forgiven for think millennials are the Snowflake Generation, given all the negative press they get. However, these snowflakes have sharp edges as a British Army recruitment campaign recently demonstrated. According to ProlificLondon, adverts targeting “me me me millennials”, “snowflakes” and “selfie addicts” have driven the highest recruitment rates in at least seven years, despite their divisiveness. And this attitude isn’t just unique to the UK.
Across the pond, US millennials are picking up arms and their cellphones. They are flocking to Instagram with captions like “Happiness is a warm gun. Bang bang pew pew. #lifeisepic”, and call themselves members of the “tactical community.” In light of this growing trend, a number of businesses are moving into this space, such as leggings with concealed carry for yoga moms, or self-protection jewelry. In fact, in 2007 only 10 registered gun sellers in the country had “Tactical” in their names. By 2017, there were 128.
To understand more about this growing community, we spoke with Hannah Jobe, Operations Manager of Yellow Jacket Case, a company that has produced a phone case that doubles as a stun gun and backup battery for your phone, who says: “For me, living a tactical life starts with an awareness that there are active dangers which exist in our society, and fully taking advantage of our constitutional freedom to defend ourselves against those dangers. It is incredibly empowering, especially for me as a woman, to know I am capable of defending myself should I face such a situation. Personally when choosing a new self-defense tool to add to my arsenal, effectiveness, and ease of use are at the top of my priority list.”
She adds: “The Yellow Jacket fits flawlessly into my tactical lifestyle. The unique device is a phone case, back-up battery for your phone, and an extremely powerful stun gun. It is also a non-lethal option which can be a great addition for individuals who choose not to carry a firearm, but also great for individuals who do carry because not every situation requires lethal force.”
With mass shootings taking place across the world in schools, festivals, cinemas, and many other locations, it is understandable to see the appeal of this self-defense community. However, an additional driving factor for the success of this community is its glamours appeal. According to a recent article in The Washington Post titled “The Heavily Armed Millennials of Instagram,” members of the tactical community have no interest in collecting hunting rifles or shotguns, as owners of these types of weapons are referred to as Fudds, as in Elmer. Instead, they prefer the gun of mass murderers, the AR-15, which is also the preferred gun of the sexy millennials of Instagram, states the article.
According to a previous NPR article, polls suggest that millennials are no more liberal on gun control than their elders. This is believable in the face of these armed millennials. Let us hope that in such a community safety and proper training is taken with the utmost severity, and perhaps we might be looking at a future generation of deadly, yet sensible, well-prepared individuals.
Disclosure: This article includes a client of an Espacio portfolio company