California court rules: pretending to be a war hero is protected under the first amendment

Skyler Smith

By Pete Kotz

“An appeals court in California ruled this week that the Stolen Valor Act violates the First Amendment, since it’s a restriction on speech. After all, our constitution is designed to protect all speech, even if it’s utter bullshit.

One might presume the feds will appeal the ruling to a higher court, so the case is not likely over. Obviously it’s a chickenshit move to claim you were a hero when you’re actually the guy who ran away when things got tough. But once the government starts regulating speech, it’s only a matter of time before they start banning non-bullshit speech, isn’t it?

Skyler Smith claimed to be a hero during his Army service in Iraq and Afghanistan. When he was around other veterans in Huntsville, Alabama, he walked with a limp and liked to wear his medals — including two Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Combat Infantry Badge…

He even rode on the Purple Heart float in Huntsville’s Veteran’s Parade, and was about to be inducted into the American Legion’s Military Order of the Purple Heart. He also used his status as a disabled vet to get a $160,000 contract with the Defense Department to provide bullet-proof vests.

But when the Legion decided to do some digging before Smith was formally inducted, it found something terribly amiss. It seems Smith not only wasn’t a war hero; he was actually a cowardly douchebag who went AWOL from his unit, having fled the 82nd Airborne just as it was to be deployed to the Middle East.”

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