Is Lying About Military Service Is Okay?
Jack Jacobs can proudly — and truthfully — say he was awarded the Medal of Honor for his valor in Vietnam. After a recent Supreme Court ruling, anyone else is free under the First Amendment to make the same claim, whether it’s true or not.
Some military veterans say they consider the ruling a slap in the face. For Jacobs, though, it was the right decision. He said he wore the uniform to protect people’s rights — even if he doesn’t agree with how they exercise those rights.
The high court ruled 6 to 3 on Thursday to toss out the conviction of Xavier Alvarez, a former California politician who lied about being a decorated military veteran.
He had been charged under the 2006 Stolen Valor Act, which made it a crime to lie about receiving the Medal of Honor and other prestigious military recognitions. The decision invalidated the law, as the justices ruled Alvarez’s fabricated story was constitutionally protected speech.
I find that the Supreme Court totally blew it on this decision. I also think it was pretty underhanded to seemingly sliding it in under the ObamaCare ruling – that speaks volumes to me.
It is clear that since none of the members of the Supreme Court have served in the military, they have no idea what kind of message that sends to service members, veterans, and their families. The message received is “We don’t care if people falsely claim they were in the military or won honors, but we don’t care how that will affect the real service members, veterans, and their families either.” Justices, remember who proctects the country in which you makes the highest level of legal decisions.
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