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More Stolen Valor

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by BFISA, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    AP: POW benefit claimants exceed recorded POWs

    By ALLEN G. BREED, AP National Writer Allen G. Breed, Ap National Writer – 2 hrs 22 mins ago

    Prisoners of war suffer in ways most veterans don't, enduring humiliating forced marches, torture or other trauma that may haunt them long afterward. In partial recompense, the government extends them special benefits, from free parking and tax breaks to priority in medical treatment.

    Trouble is, some of the much-admired recipients of these benefits apparently don't deserve them.

    There are only 21 surviving POWs from the first Gulf War in 1991, the Department of Defense says. Yet the Department of Veterans Affairs is paying disability benefits to 286 service members it says were taken prisoner during that conflict, according to data released by VA to The Associated Press.

    A similar discrepancy arises with Vietnam POWs. Only 661 officially recognized prisoners returned from that war alive — and about 100 of those have since died, according to Defense figures. But 966 purported Vietnam POWs are getting disability payments, the VA told AP.

    Being classified as a POW doesn't directly increase a veteran's monthly disability check. There's no "POW payment."

    But a tale of torture and privation can influence whether a vet receives some money or nothing at all in disability payments — and the VA's numbers raise questions about how often such tales are exaggerated or invented altogether.

    For one Korean War veteran, a made-up story helped to ensure more than $400,000 in benefits before his lies were discovered. A Gulf War vet told a tale of beatings and mock executions, though he was never even a POW. Four women Vietnam vets blamed disabilities on their time as prisoners — even though there's no record of female POWs in that war.

    At the root of the problem is a disconnect between two branches of government: The Defense Department determines POW status and posts the lists online; the VA awards benefits, but evidently does not always check the DoD list to verify applicants' claims. Result: Numbers of benefit recipients that are higher than the number of recognized POWs.

    "They're either phonies or there's a major administrative error somewhere," retired Navy Cmdr. Paul Galanti, who is on a VA advisory panel for POW issues, said when told of the agency's numbers.

    VA spokesman Terry Jemison says POW status is confirmed "in conjunction with Department of Defense authoritative records." But the agency has not explained discrepancies between its POW numbers and the DoD's, despite repeated requests for comment.

    Galanti, who was shot down over North Vietnam in 1966 and spent nearly seven years in the infamous "Hanoi Hilton" prison, calls the discrepancy "outrageous" and adds: "Somebody ought to get fired for that."

    But as service members return from Iraq and Afghanistan, he knows an investigation that could bog down benefits would be shouted down as anti-veteran. And so the investigating falls to private watchdog groups like the P.O.W. Network, which says it has outed some 2,000 POW pretenders.

    Nothing could be more pro-veteran, such groups say, than to go after people who are taking money meant for their comrades — and also, in effect, stealing their honor.

    ___

    There's incentive to lie. A 100 percent disability rating can be worth more than $35,000 a year in tax-free VA benefits for a married veteran with at least one dependent child — not to mention also making the veteran eligible for Social Security disability payments, and full health coverage and significant educational benefits for himself and his family.

    And a POW designation in VA files puts a vet in a special category under federal regulations.

    Normally a veteran's "lay testimony" about traumatizing events — or stressors — is not considered proof when applying for disability with the Veterans Benefits Administration, or VBA, the agency's claims arm. However, the regulations add: "If the evidence establishes that the veteran was a prisoner-of-war ... the veteran's lay testimony alone may establish the occurrence of the claimed in-service stressor."

    So, if a veteran told a VA psychiatrist that he had been a POW, and that story, true or not, formed the basis of the doctor's post-traumatic stress disorder diagnosis, what does that mean?

    "I would probably accept the paperwork," says Richard Allen of Wichita, Kan., who retired from the VBA in January after 25 years as a claims specialist.

    "They're home free if they're a confirmed POW," says Allen, himself a Vietnam-era Army veteran. "We don't ask any other questions as far as verification of stressors."

    POWs are exempt from copays for VA inpatient and outpatient care and medications. And POWs are entitled to an annual evaluation at the Robert E. Mitchell Center for Prisoner of War Studies in Pensacola, Fla., travel and other expenses paid. That applies only to those on the Defense list, says Dr. Robert E. Hain, executive director of the Navy-run facility.

    "That's essentially the gold standard," says Hain, a retired Navy captain.

    Many states offer POWs free parking at public facilities, property tax exemptions and a waiver of vehicle registration fees. That can mean hundreds of dollars saved when buying a car and hundreds more in annual renewals with POW tags.

    All it takes is a letter from a VA facility, which may or may not have verified the veteran's story.

    The P.O.W. Network says most phonies are just braggarts puffing at the local Kiwanis luncheon or preening for women in bars, but many have received significant benefits while trading off their borrowed valor.

    Edward Lee Daily of Clarksville, Tenn., collected more than $412,000 in disability and medical benefits over 15 years before being exposed.

    Daily, who spent most of the Korean war as a mechanic and clerk, far from the front, took advantage of a fire that destroyed documents at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis. He forged paperwork not only to show he was a POW, but that he'd been wounded by shrapnel and given a battlefield promotion to first lieutenant.

    Daily pleaded guilty in 2002, and was sentenced to 21 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution. After years of garnishing his monthly Social Security check, the government has recouped just $7,000. (Daily also gave fabricated information to the AP in interviews for an unrelated story in 1999.)

    VA's Jemison says the Veterans Health Administration, the agency's medical arm, confirms a veteran's POW status using DoD records.

    But that doesn't explain people like Daily or John Karl Lee, of El Paso, Texas.

    Lee's POW tale is set at the time of the Gulf War in 1991. The Army reservist claimed in interviews that he and two comrades were taken while fighting was raging, and only after emptying their M-16s at the pursuing Iraqis.

    "We were beaten with the butt of their AK-47s," he told El Paso Inc. in 2002. "Sometimes in the leg, head, even the groin."

    The truth was that he and the other two were sightseeing in Kuwait after the war had ended, and their vehicle strayed into Iraq. They were arrested by Iraqi authorities and held for three days at a hotel, where they were fed well, his comrades later said.

    "I was held against my will," Lee told the AP in a recent interview.

    Lee told AP he received a VA medical card identifying him as a former prisoner. (His documentation included an application to the VBA for POW status.) For a time, he received full disability payments from the U.S. Labor Department, supposedly for injuries and PTSD from his three weeks — not days — in captivity.

    When authorities discovered Lee was running a business, they charged him with fraud and making false statements. He was convicted and ordered to pay nearly $230,000 in restitution and fines.

    Lee is now applying to have some VA benefits reinstated.

    The phenomenon of the fake POW is nothing new — frauds have been outed from conflicts going back at least to World War II. And it's not limited just to men.

    When the landmark National Vietnam Veteran Readjustment Study came out in 1988, four of the 427 female veterans surveyed attributed their stress to their time as POWs. That's impossible, says B.G. "Jug" Burkett, co-author of the book, "Stolen Valor: How the Vietnam Generation was Robbed of its Heroes and its History."

    "There just plain weren't any," says Burkett, himself an Army officer in Vietnam.

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  2. fan4ever
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    fan4ever BoltTalker

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    Doesn't (rep) john macain draw full benefits and yet he owns 8 mansions with his rich wife? Vets with no homes yet...:icon_sad:
  3. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Sen McCain has a few other things going for him than any VA bennies he may be collecting.

    BTW, what's your take on phony V?A claims??
  4. fan4ever
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    fan4ever BoltTalker

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    Phony claims are wrong. Just as pulling bennefits when your rich when there are so many that have given up sanity and limbs are left in the dark. It's bad enough that most of the military is made up of those with no other opportunities, but that they get left behind when they come home. Putting a sticker on the import does nothing for them. It's time corruption came to an end.
  5. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    For the record, I doubt seriously if Sen McClain has put in claims for VA, although he's certainly entitled to them.

    As for your claim that most of the military is made up of those with no other opportunities, I submit that's bunk. And the part about being left behind when they come back is another load.
  6. Game123
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    Game123 Well-Known Member

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    Made up service history is just as bad as phony veteran status. It does no honor to our soldiers who served their country. But, to say that our veterans should decline their rightfully obtained veteran's benefits just because they're more well to do than their fellow soldiers, is no better than discounting their service to this country. All veterans have paid a price in service to the United States. They are no less a veteran because of their personal wealth.
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  7. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    IF we deal with the HEROES, the wannabes must also be dealt with. False MoH Recipients does just that. The point is made that Medal of Honor Recipients is a closed society; there's only 157 of them still alive, and they know each other. Those that choose to steal their Valor have got to know this, but do it anyway.
  8. Lightning's Girl
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    Lightning's Girl Mod Chick =) Staff Member Moderator

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    Speaking as the proud mother of TWO United States Soldiers, I call those statements by a less attractive and equally-to-the-point name: bullshit.

    Neither my daughter nor my son joined the military because they had no other opportunities; they CHOSE to serve their country because they saw it as the right thing to do. (Well, it didn't hurt that they'd have the chance to earn some money AND see something of the world beyond our little burg in Western Oregon.:lol:) To insinuate that the military is full of losers who couldn't make it in college or get a job is not only wrong, it's an insult. I'm appalled.:icon_evil:
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  9. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    I thought that might piss you off.
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  10. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Not to mention Pat Tillman.
  11. Lightning's Girl
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    Lightning's Girl Mod Chick =) Staff Member Moderator

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    Yep, it sure did :censored:
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  12. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    I showed it to my son when he came back from the ME recently; I'll not repeat his comments here, but he wasn't happy.
  13. Lightning's Girl
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    Lightning's Girl Mod Chick =) Staff Member Moderator

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    I can imagine!

    My daughter would DEFINITELY have an issue with that statement, seeing as how she is currently a) up for promotion to Sergeant in two weeks, b) the training supervisor for the ATC program, c) in charge of three "problem" soldiers whom she mentors, and d) also in charge of putting together a demonstration of the "gas chamber" for an upcoming inspection by some of the top brass.

    This is a 23-year-old we're talking about here. She's got a sense of responsibility built into her that the average person doesn't get until they're well into their fifth and sixth decades of life. The military doesn't merely take "losers" and turn them into passable human beings; it takes good people and makes them better.........far better than they could ever be on their own.

    So there. PFFFFFFFFFFFFFFT!!!
  14. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Solid; and may I add that her mom is a very special lady!! :yes: :tup: :icon_toast: :flag:
  15. Lightning's Girl
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    Lightning's Girl Mod Chick =) Staff Member Moderator

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    Awwwwwwww..........that's really sweet, and I can't even rep ya cuz I'm out............

    I got some bad news from her today; she's been diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, and they're doing biopsies of both ovaries and cervix to rule out cancer since her Pap came back with "abnormalities". To say that I am terrified for her is the understatement of the year---granted, she's young, and there is no history of these sorts of CA in our family, but while I know that intellectually, my heart isn't listening very well.

    Add to that the fact that she'll probably never be able to have any more babies and faces an enormous risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome and other endocrine problems, and suddenly my "steel magnolia" becomes a little hothouse flower, beautiful but much more fragile than she looks. I'm so sad for her, I just wish I could reach over the 3000 miles between us and hold her to me until all the hurt goes away.

    I'd like to ask those who might be so inclined to lift her up in prayer over these next few days while we wait for the biopsy results to come in.........thanks in advance!
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  16. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Goes without sayin' Darlin; thoughts and prayers for your precious daughter, and all precious children, whilst I'm at it.

    In the meantime, stay strong and listen to your brain; let it overrule your heart.
  17. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Another phony ******* exposed!!

    Linky

    Vets expose advocate as impostor

    <snip>Federal authorities are looking into whether Rick Duncan, whose real name is Richard Glen Strandlof, could have pilfered money he raised in the name of Colorado veterans, said Daniel Warvi of the Colorado Veterans Alliance (CVA), the group that Duncan founded.

    "We were all taken aback," Warvi said.

    Strandlof, 31, who invented the name Duncan and claimed he was a former Marine captain and 1997 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, never served in the military and falsely claimed that he was in the Pentagon during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the group said.

    Two members of CVA said the group became suspicious of the man they knew as Duncan after discovering inconsistencies in his personal story.

    In a search of the Colorado Secretary of State's Office records, for example, they found that the name Colorado Veterans Alliance had been reserved by "Rick Strandlof," whom they had never met, the group said.

    The group said it found that Strandlof had been a patient in a mental hospital in Washoe County, Nev., at the time of the roadside bombing in Fallujah, Iraq, that he claimed left him severely wounded.<snip>
  18. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Another one bites the dust

    Relieved of duty : A veteran recently featured for falsifying his military record lost his job as a bailiff.

    By Tabatha Hunter Staff Writer tabathah@nwanews.com

    Posted on Friday, May 1, 2009


    <snip>BENTONVILLE - James Holland has been released from his duties as bailiff for Circuit Court Judge Doug Schrantz after Sheriff Keith Ferguson pulled Holland's commission with the Sheriff's Office on Thursday. Holland's termination comes on the heels of a Daily Record report detailing his military career. In previous stories, Holland claimed to be an Army Ranger and a member of the Special Forces, commonly known as the Green Berets. Holland also said he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and the Silver Star. These claims proved to be false.

    Before Holland was hired by the Sheriff's Office, he submitted a type-written military biographical summary. In that summary, Holland claims to have been awarded the Silver Star, the Special Forces tab and the Ranger tab.

    Holland, in fact, did not receive the Silver Star. He was not in the Special Forces, and he was not a Ranger.

    "I have never been awarded the Distinguished Service Cross or the Silver Star," Holland previously told a Daily Record reporter.

    "You do not see me wearing a Green Beret or Ranger tab," Holland said of the claims for the Special Forces tab and the Ranger tab listed in the military biography provided to the Sheriff's Office by Holland.<snip>
  19. Charger Dave
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    Charger Dave Back to the Alethiometer..

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    ...and at that point in reading your post my opinion changed. Possibly if you learned how to properly spell the word benefit and its various iterations when used in the English language it wouldn't have caused me to start reading more closely? Now I must assume that you are stating your opinion - but that it is not one based upon personal experience. Don't bother with an apology for the highlighted portion or your post - I won't be reading it anyway.

    MCPO USN-Retired ... I enlisted at 17 and have NEVER asked anyone if they wanted curly fries with their order. Can you say the same?
  20. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Don't bother with this chump, Dave, he's got nothing of substance to say on this thread.
  21. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Even on a day as solemn as Memorial Day, some jerk-off thinks he can pull some **** off-

    http://www.madisonpress.com/local.asp?ID=1678&Story=1

    A time to pause and reflect
    Monday, May 25, 2009

    By Sarah Thompson
    Staff Writer

    - - - - - [excerpt] - - - - -

    “You’d have a little kid come up and throw up a hand grenade. That made him a hero to kill two or three GIs. You learned not to trust anyone that approached you when you were in a group,” he said. “We had people walk up on us with grenades or kill you when they shine your shoe.”

    Reed also spent time as a prisoner of war. His account was frightening and captivating.

    “I was a prisoner of war for thee months,” he said softly. “I was 20 and we went into Cambodia. We were up in a tree. We’d followed Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Regulars, gathering information.

    “All the sudden, I felt something cold in my ear. It was a P-10 pistol. Now, I speak fluently North and South Vietnamese. He told me, ‘You can either killroy (surrender) or I’ll blow your brains out.’”

    - - - - - [end excerpt] - - - - -

    Sarah Thompson can be reached at (740) 852-1616, ext. 14 or by e-mail at news4@madison-press.com.

    I contacted the reporter of this story as well as Chuck and Mary Schantag and Doug Sterner regarding Mr. Reed's fraudulent claims.

    This ******* isn't on any of the POW rolls, and the simple fact is, if you ain't on that list, you ain't no POW.

    Man, that jes flat ****es me off!!
  22. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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  23. Charger Dave
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    Charger Dave Back to the Alethiometer..

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    I dug up Toby's old thread just to post this article:

    Why It's Criminal to Lie About Military Honors
    www.theatlantic.com

    As the Supreme Court decides whether to uphold the Stolen Valor Act, the public should note the damage that fraudulent veterans have already done.
    Rick Duncan was a politician's dream. A former Marine Corps Captain and a graduate of the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, he was awarded the Purple Heart due to combat injuries he sustained from an IED while serving on one of his three tours in Iraq. Mr. Duncan, with his unassailable credentials, served as the perfect mouthpiece for anti-Iraq War candidates during the 2008 elections. He took center stage and spoke with authority about the failed Bush policies in Iraq, commanding attention from politicians, reporters, and even other veterans. For almost two years, Duncan continued to be a fierce anti-war advocate, creating the Colorado Veterans Alliance and speaking at length about the plight of his brethren.
    But there was a problem with Rick Duncan. He did not actually earn the Purple Heart, go to Annapolis, or serve even one tour of duty. In fact, he had never served one day in the military. His name was not even Rick Duncan; rather, it was Rick Strandlof and he was a total fraud. For his lies, Strandlof was convicted of violating the Stolen Valor Act.
    This Act, as codified in Title 18, Section 704 of the United States Code, makes it a crime to lie about having received a military award such as the Purple Heart or the Medal of Honor. The law has its origins in history dating back to the Founding Fathers, but it is now being challenged before the Supreme Court on the grounds that it infringes upon free speech rights. Strandlof's was one of the first cases to be overturned by a Denver federal judge, on the grounds that the statute was "facially unconstitutional" as a violation of the First Amendment.
    This law, though, does not restrict the free speech protected by the First Amendment, because lies are inherently fraudulent. Fraud, alongside obscenity and incitement, is among the categories of speech recognized by the Supreme Court whose "prevention and punishment . . . have never been thought to raise any Constitutional problem." A statute that punishes fraud therefore comports with First Amendment freedoms. As the name of the Act implies, every lie about a military honor defrauds true heroes and American society, polluting the very meaning of heroism and causing harms that Congress can constitutionally criminalize.
    Restrictions on who can claim to be a recipient of military honors date back to George Washington, who created the first American military award, the Purple Heart, during the Revolutionary War. Then General Washington immediately established the first ban on the unauthorized wearing of such awards by ordering, "Should any who are not entitled to the honors, have the insolence to assume the badges of them, they shall be severely punished."
    Before the current Stolen Valor Act was passed by Congress in 2006, a long-standing statute codifying Washington's order prohibited wearing military service medals or military uniforms without authority. Four decades ago, the Supreme Court in Schacht v. United States declared this to be valid law, writing that "making it an offense to wear our military uniforms without authority is, standing alone, a valid statute on its face."
    Recent trends in society have clouded the situation somewhat. Two weeks before the Stolen Valor Act was introduced to Congress, the hit comedy Wedding Crashers was released in the United States. It featured Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn lying about being Purple Heart recipients to get free drinks and to pick up women. The movie's official website offered a printable Purple Heart advertised as a gimmick so moviegoers could do the same. The website advertised, "To get one of these babies, some dudes have to prove their physical, mental and spiritual strength with great feats of bravery on the battlefield. All you need to do is press the button below."
    The current challenge to the Stolen Valor Act presumes that the characters in the Wedding Crashers, while they may be despicable, are not criminals. Such opponents of the Act argue, if a guy gets a free drink at a bar or a little extra sympathy by claiming an award, what's the problem? Even the Supreme Court pondered this question in oral argument about the Stolen Valor Act. Justice Sotomayor compared it to a boyfriend who lies to her on a date, asking, "Outside of the emotional reaction, where's the harm?"
    The issue is that these are not few or isolated events, and each one defrauds. According to Congressional records, prior to the enactment of this statute, more than twice as many people claimed to have received the Medal of Honor as had actually received it. In the 18 months after the statute was enacted, the Chicago Tribune estimated there were 20 prosecutions under the Act. According to the Washington Post, the FBI investigated 200 stolen valor cases in 2009 and typically receives about 50 tips a month. According to Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion (who filed briefs supporting the Stolen Valor Act in this case), imposters have included a United States Attorney, Member of Congress, Ambassador, Judge, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and bestselling author, manager of a Major League Baseball team, Navy Captain, police chief, top executive at a world-famous research laboratory, director of state veterans' programs, university administrator, pastor, candidate for countywide office, mayor, physician, and more than one police officer.
    Rewards for some of these fraudulent lies may be as simple as an undeserved free drink, but others have been extremely costly. Perhaps the most egregious example is a Marine Sergeant who used false claims of Silver Stars, Purple Hearts, Bronze Stars, and Air Medals to secure $66 million in security contracts from the military. When the military learned of the man's fraudulent combat record, they revoked the contracts, but he had already fled the country.
    In another instance, 12 men defrauded the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs out of more than $1.4 million in veteran's benefits by alleging military medals they had never received. In 2003, 642 people claimed exemption from Virginia state taxes for having received the Medal of Honor; however, at the time, there were only four living recipients in the whole state. Others have used their lies to publicize books, get VIP tickets to rock concerts, and obtain free hunting and fishing licenses.
    Additionally, imposters rewrite history because they are given unique access to the media on account of their claimed awards. They distort historical accounts of military events by providing fictitious "memories" that have been reported in newspapers, magazines, memoirs, and documentaries. Along with Rick Strandlof, for instance, Jesse Macbeth fraudulently used his claim of being a Purple Heart recipient to lend credibility to his fabricated stories about mass murders and other war crimes he purportedly witnessed American troops committing during the liberation of Iraq. Even the Library of Congress was deceived: In a project concerning veterans' oral histories, it found 25 of the 49 Medal of Honor recipients it identified, as well as 32 Distinguished Service Cross recipients and 14 Navy Cross recipients, had lied about having been awarded those honors.
    The third aspect of these lies' harm involves stealing honor and respect from true recipients of the military awards. Recipients of these awards are recognized for a character of selflessness, bravery, and heroism, whereas imposters brag about credentials they have never earned. This denigrates society's overall impression of medal recipients and increases skepticism about those who have rightfully received these awards.
    Moreover, protecting the integrity of military awards has been long seen as an important aspect in maintaining a motivated military. As Napoleon Bonaparte recognized, "A solider will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon." Our soldiers are not driven by medals, but this recognition of their bravery and excellence is a kind of code -- a "language" that lets others know that an individual has reached a level of performance and patriotism, and that he or she deserves the respect of peers.
    In one such case of stolen valor, David Weber, a 69-year-old veteran of the Marine Corps, falsely claimed to be a two-star Major General at a Marine Corps birthday celebration near San Diego, California. Mr. Weber said he had been awarded a Purple Heart, along with other medals that he did not earn. Because of his status as a wounded warrior and senior officer, Mr. Weber was offered the first slice of birthday cake. At the same celebration was a veteran who had fought in the Battle of Guadalcanal in World War II, a battle that ended with over 7,000 dead Americans and 31,000 dead Japanese. While it is true that the monetary value of the first slice of cake may be infinitesimal, the honor he stole from the other veterans is priceless. Recognition of the Guadalcanal veteran was muffled by the attention-grabbing antics of Weber.
    Finally, those who lie about receiving an undeserved military honor swindle unearned sympathy and respect from the American people. The Supreme Court recently recognized the significance of this unquantifiable sentiment in Porter v. McCollum, where it held that a defendant's military decorations were so important to a jury's verdict that the failure of his attorney to bring the awards to the jury's attention constituted ineffective assistance of counsel. In the Court's words, "Our Nation has a long tradition of according leniency to veterans in recognition of their service, especially for those who fought on the front lines." Unearned credibility in the community was one of the harms Congress explicitly contemplated in this statute. When imposters claim this status, they steal leniency, credibility, respect, and sympathy from the American public.
    In the case of Rick Strandlof (aka Rick Duncan), the New York Times reported that his ability to "fool so many people for so long says much about the power of veterans in Colorado, a swing state with numerous military bases." People do not want to question a warrior's story. Indeed, Mr. Strandlof reported that he lost a finger in Iraq when it was blatantly apparent he had all ten digits. Even with this obvious discrepancy, his copious lies went on for months. He specifically used the respect for veterans to campaign for Jared Polis, who won a seat in the House of Representatives, and for Mark Udall, who won a seat in the Senate.
    It is true that it is difficult to determine the actual harm done in each stolen valor case, but it not hard to see that each case harms someone or something. When Congress spoke of how "imposters . . . cheapen the value of these honors," it didn't mean that the Medal of Honor becomes worth less in dollar value on the black market. They meant that there is a cost to each military hero and to the American people for each of these lies, even when the only quantifiable profit comes in the form of a slice of cake.
    For these reasons, the Act was passed in 2006 by an overwhelming majority in Congress, and should be upheld by the Supreme Court. Because someone who falsely claims these honors cheats his audience, dilutes the positive perception of the honors, and benefits in tangible ways from his fraud, these lies are not and should not be protected by the Constitution.
  24. BFISA
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    BFISA Well-Known Member

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    Brings back alotta memories
  25. Charger Dave
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    Charger Dave Back to the Alethiometer..

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