Xavier Alvarez told of playing hockey for the Detroit Red Wings, marrying a Mexican starlet, piloting a helicopter in Vietnam and suffering gunshot wounds while rescuing the American ambassador during the Iran hostage crisis. All were lies.
He got into legal trouble……..in 2007 and described himself as a retired Marine who had received the Medal of Honor.The Supreme Court will take up Alvarez’s case Wednesday to decide whether the 1st Amendment protects not just the freedom of speech but a right to lie about military honors.
Congress enacted the Stolen Valor Act in 2006 to make it a crime to falsely claim a military honor. And Alvarez, once he was exposed, was convicted and fined $5,000.” here
The (very Liberal) 9th District Court of California, bought Alvarez’s defense claiming not only that “everyone lies” but it was his “freedom of speech”. And thus the Supreme Court is hearing the case.
This is a too fold argument and beyond.
True, people lie. It’s part of the sin nature mankind is born with. There was a time when lies and liars were scolded, shunned, run out of office (Mr. Clinton) and would be force to feel the sharp needles of shame.
It’s also true we have Constitutionally held “freedom of speech” . . . unless it comes to yelling “fire!” inside a building and endangering others. Then it’s a felony.
So what’s correct?
Lies of this magnitude, as with the lies of the then Pres. William Jefferson Clinton – hurt and malign other individuals. But the lies politicians willingly and eagerly tell to push their case, also harm other people. The lies reporters tell about celebrities hurt other people.
So where does “freedom of speech” end and responsibility and accountability come into play?
Perjury, lying under oath, is what got the defunct, ex-President Bill Clinton impeached, as well it should have. He committed perjury, denying a woman a fair trail. All to protect his lousy, adulterous hide.
But more importantly, when a politician swears to “uphold the Constitution of the United States” and does not do so in word or deed, that should be an impeachable offense. (wouldn’t it be nice if we could actually hold these elected official to the truth).
What Xavier Alvarez did was reprehensible; claiming to be a war hero when he was the cowardly, lying lion. He should be held accountable in the Court of Public Opinion if nothing else and hopefully he will. But I imagine the Court will over turn the Congressional Stolen Valor act and rule that it’s unconstitutional. (which they should also do with ‘Obamacare’ and most of what this man his done in office).
Lies seem to be something we seem to want to protect in this country . . . . and the liars who extol them.