In all the very appropriate outrage over the Supreme Court ruling on ObamaCare, another ruling made by the Supreme Court has gotten much less attention – except in military/Veteran circles. And we are disgusted. Not to mention furious. The Supreme Court ruled on the Stolen Valor Act, as well as ObamaCare.
The Stolen Valor Act prohibits a person from falsely claiming that he or she has been awarded a military honor. It was passed by Congress in 2005, signed by President George W Bush, and called for a possible 1 year prison term.
Voting in favor of striking down the Stolen Valor Act were the Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen G. Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
Supporting the law were Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito.
The case the Supreme Court heard involved a man falsely claiming to be a Marine having been awarded the Medal of Honor – the highest of Honors. In Boot Camp we ‘joked’ that to get the Medal of Honor you had to be dead – you had to have sacrificed yourself to save others. It is commonly presented posthumously.
The Medal of Honor is, admittedly, the most extreme example. Many of our heroes live to receive their military awards, rather than having them presented to a grieving family. And they are often left with serious physical injuries, and even more often with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or other mental and emotional injuries.