Crazy Eddie wrote:
You're the one who said nothing changed between TOS and TNG. The change was that Starships started going into deep space with children and families on board.
Am I wrong? Was this NOT a change? Did they have families on Kirk's Enterprise?
Which seems to have come to a screeching halt if the TNG movies, DS9 and Voyager are accounted for.
Again, even in early-TNG, the "we're not the military" remark Picard gives simply doesn't stand up under any kind of serious scrutiny. Starfleet is the one that is sent when an aggressor threatens Federation borders. Starfleet is the one who protects civilian shipping and outposts. Starfleet is the one who develops weapons and strategy for defending the Federation.
You have to have a dedicated military for defense and border patrol. Does Starfleet have exploration and science responsibilities? Yes. But never have we seen those responsibilities as being more important than the defense of the Federation. Which, to me, shows where Starfleet's actual priorities are.