I'm no fan of Hummers, but the protests that took place Saturday demanding a ban on Hummer advertising are, I think, strategically unwise -- they reinforce the sense that Hummers are "politically incorrect," which makes them even more appealing to a lot of potential buyers, and, maybe worse, they reinforce the impression a lot of people have that people on the left hate and fear anything that's big and tough and manly and all that.
Look, I've grown really weary of the supersizing of America -- McMansions, glutton-sized portions, excessive musculature that isn't even used for anything, and big blocky vehicles -- and our national fondness for gas-guzzlers seems insane when we're fighting multiple Middle Eastern wars. But I think we need to pick our battles better. Why not start by protesting the insane loophole that now allows small-business owners and self-employed people to tool around in massive SUVs (not just Hummers) and get huge tax breaks? The loophole was designed for farmers and contractors and others who legitimately need big vehicles for their work; it uses a weight limit -- a limit quite a few SUVs exceed. A doctor or self-employed consultant who could easily drive a smaller vehicle thus gets to buy a Cadillac Escalade and write off a big chunk of the purchase price, at everyone else's expense. The message is: You want to be macho? Don't do it at my expense, schmuck.