“From now on …that’s Colonel Perry….to you …suh!!!!!”
So what the devil does this mean’
Well, it’s simple…last week the fabulous 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals (in California, where else’) decided that the stolen valor act was unconstitutional. For those of you unfamiliar with this act, it had made the fraudulent wearing of military decorations a crime. You could not, for example, wear a Purple Heart of a Medal of Honor unless it had actually been awarded to you. The court was comprised of a three member panel with two members voting to strike the law and one dissention.
The reason the court voted to overturn the law was… in their opinion, that the existing law violated the rights of the first amendment. Punishing you for alleging that you had earned the Medal of Honor when you really hadn’t… violated your rights of free speech.
The opinion went on to state that ‘as long as no one was harmed….then lying about something cannot be considered a crime…merely an expression of free speech.’ They also stated that perhaps someone really wanted to be a mountain climber or a race car driver, they saw no harm in allowing someone to make statements such as these. Their rationale was that anyone who wants to ‘fudge’ on their weight or height is free to do so and the government has no business charging someone with a crime who makes false statements. The unfulfilled ambitions of anyone who wants to change their personal history is an expression of the first amendment.
So, that leads me to my story…..when I was in the service, I only rose to the rank of an e-5 sergeant during my 3 years. But I ALWAYS really wanted to be an officer. Now a general would be a little presumptuous, and a lieutenant or captain a little too far down the chain of command ladder. So, a colonel seems to be about right. Therefore I’d appreciate it if you all would kindly address me as such from this point forward. No harm in that is there’
I suppose this ruling means that any false statement I care to make about myself and my background is ok and perfectly legal. I guess those who apply for jobs and think they graduated and have a PHD degree or wanted to have a PHD degree should not be afraid to post these claims on their resumes. I mean I thought I had a degree…..although I could be mistaken…but gosh, I was just wishing I had a degree from Harvard, Vassar or wherever. What’s wrong with that’I have a right to express myself…..this is America.
Good God Gertie……have we lost our ever-loving minds’Have we no sense of respect’sure if some five foot tall Bozo wants to tell everyone he was a forward for the Chicago Bulls, that’s ok with me, I can probably figure that one out for myself. Those kinds of things are kind of obvious.
But passing yourself off as a Medal of Honor winner or the recipient of some medal for valor is a different issue in my mind. It comes down to a sense of value. Do we have value as a nation or not’Do we not see a problem with someone who tells us lies and is a fraud’If we allow falsehoods to be accepted, then what is the value of truth’How can we prosecute a Madoff when all he did was make false statements about the value of investors’ money’Weren’t his lies an expression of his first amendment rights as well’
Of course, that statement is silly….of course Madoff hurt people though his fraud and his rightfully being punished for his fraud.
But I ask you; don’t the mother and father of an injured or killed military son or daughter deserve the protection of our countries laws to keep their sons and daughters sacrifices pure and sacrosanct’
Or are those medals of valor so meaningless that we freely allow their value to be claimed by any and all for whatever reason under the guise of ‘free speech’’
I think not.