Lies about military valor — protected by free speech? US Supreme Court to decide

The Purple Heart

THE GUERRILLA ANGEL REPORT–In my opinion, lying about one’s military service, and, especially, claims of valor ranks right up there with wife beating and abusing animals.
I have know of a few of these boasters, including a U.S. Representative from Oregon, Wes Cooley, whose military service claims were debunked by a long thought dead sergeant who surfaced and said Cooley’s claims were pure BS. Cooley was hounded out of office, and later arrested for fraud in another state (on a different matter).

The First Amendment protects free speech and this includes the right to lie about military service. This is something that I have to agree with. The golden rule here is, don’t believe everything you hear, especially if it has to do with military service.

There is a law on the books called the Stolen Valor Act which makes it a crime to falsely claim to have earned medals in the military. The 9th U.S. Court of Appeals struck it down saying the government can’t act as a “truth police” to punish lies that cause no harm.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear the case. I have a hunch that free speech will prevail and we will have to find another way to hold those who lie about military valor accountable for their actions.

From wiki: The Stolen Valor Act of 2005, signed into law by President George W. Bush on December 20, 2006,[1] is a U.S. law that broadens the provisions of previous U.S. law addressing the unauthorized wear, manufacture, or sale of any military decorations and medals. It makes it a federal misdemeanor offense to falsely represent oneself as having received any U.S. military decoration or medal. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stolen_Valor_Act_of_2005

I can’t vouch for this site but these people report those who are lying about military service: http://www.reportstolenvalor.org/

Related story: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/18/us/justices-take-case-on-lying-about-honors-from-military.html



Categories: Everything else

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: