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LEGAL Marines discharge sergeant for Facebook posts
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  1. #1

    Marines discharge sergeant for Facebook posts

    Marines discharge sergeant for Facebook posts

    SAN DIEGO — A sergeant will be discharged for criticizing President Barack Obama on Facebook in a case that called into question the Pentagon's policies about social media and its limits on the speech of active duty military personnel, the Marine Corps said Wednesday.

    Sgt. Gary Stein will get an other-than-honorable discharge and lose most of his benefits for violating the policies, the Corps said.

    The San Diego-area Marine who has served nine years in the Corps said he was disappointed by the decision. He argued that he was exercising his constitutional rights to free speech.

    "I love the Marine Corps, I love my job. I wish it wouldn't have gone this way. I'm having a hard time seeing how 15 words on Facebook could have ruined my nine-year career," he told The Associated Press.

    Gary Kreep, an attorney for Stein, said he would pursue administrative appeals within the Marine Corps but anticipates the effort will fail. He said he planned to file an amended complaint in federal court.

    "As long as he wants to pursue this, we will be supporting him," said Kreep, who is executive director of the United States Justice Foundation, an advocacy group.

    The Marines acted after saying Stein stated March 1 on a Facebook page used by Marine meteorologists, "Screw Obama and I will not follow all orders from him." Stein later clarified that statement, saying he would not follow unlawful orders.

    Brig. Gen. Daniel Yoo, the commanding general of the Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, said in a brief statement Wednesday that evidence supported an administrative board's recommendation to discharge Stein.

    Tom Umberg, a former Army colonel and military prosecutor, said Stein persisted even after being warned.

    "The Marine Corps gave him the opportunity to think about his actions, yet Sgt. Stein continued to undermine the chain of command," said Umberg, who was not involved in Stein's case. "I think his purpose was to leave the Marine Corps in a dramatic fashion in order to begin a career in talk radio or what have you."

    Umberg believes the decision to discharge Stein will have limited impact because the vast majority of Marines would never consider such postings.

    "I think 99 percent of the soldiers and Marines currently on duty understand the duties of supporting the chain of command and understand their rights of free speech are limited," he said. "To that 1 percent who don't know their rights to free speech are limited once they take the oath, this is a loud and clear message."

    During a hearing, a military prosecutor submitted screen grabs of Stein's postings on one Facebook page he created called Armed Forces Tea Party, which the prosecutor said included the image of Obama on a "Jackass" movie poster. Stein also superimposed Obama's image on a poster for "The Incredibles" movie that he changed to "The Horribles," military prosecutor Capt. John Torresala said.

    At the hearing this month at Camp Pendleton, Torresala argued that Stein's behavior repeatedly violated Pentagon policy and he should be dismissed after ignoring warnings from his superiors about his postings.

    The military has had a policy since the Civil War limiting the free speech of service members, including criticism of the commander in chief.

    Pentagon directives say military personnel in uniform cannot sponsor a political club; participate in any TV or radio program or group discussion that advocates for or against a political party, candidate or cause; or speak at any event promoting a political movement.

    Commissioned officers also may not use contemptuous words against senior officials.

    http://xfinity.comcast.net/articles/...e.Free.Speech/
    If the Arabs put down their weapons, there would be no violence or war, if Israel put down their weapons, there would be no Israel.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    SE Louisiana...
    Posts
    321
    What a dweeb. When he signed up to the Corps, he knew damned well that his freedom of speech was no longer entirely "free" for the duration of his enlistment. Everyone that pays half a lick of attention when they sign up knows as well. Read the UCMJ. It's all there in fairly simple terms.

    He ran his suck, he got busted for it. He can go cry in his panties.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    washington co,oh
    Posts
    466
    even still i wrote the provest marshell up for parking in a no parking zone ..on PI. ..got me the plt gidon flag ..and never pulling duty in the middle of the nite ever again ..take charge of my post and all government property in view .

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    AR
    Posts
    1,997
    Biggest mistake was he used a government/work computer! That is a huge No-No.
    Taxation WITH representation isn't so great either!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    12,565
    Marines are getting a bad rap lately.
    This, then the Columbia thing and now this, hurting a prostitute.
    One of the marines involved was a supervisor.

    Panetta: Marines punished for prostitute attack
    By LOLITA C. BALDOR, Associated Press–1 day ago
    BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) — Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Tuesday three Marines on a U.S. Embassy security team and one embassy staff member were punished for allegedly pushing a prostitute out of a car in Brasilia late last year after a dispute over payment.
    The incident is similar, but unrelated, to the scandal involving Secret Service agents at the Summit of Americas in Cartagena, Colombia, before President Barack Obama arrived for a visit.
    Panetta, speaking to reporters in Brasilia, says the Marines were pulled out of the country. Two had their ranks reduced. The embassy staffer was removed from his post.
    Panetta said he had "no tolerance for that kind of conduct."
    "Where it takes place you can be sure that we will act to make sure that they are punished and that that kind of behavior is not acceptable," he said.
    According to a defense official, "there were at least two women with the Marines outside a nightclub." The official said it appears that one of the women started a fight in a vehicle, then she was removed from the car and when she tried to re-enter fell to the ground and was injured. The official also said that no charges were filed by Brazilian authorities.
    According to another defense official, the embassy staff member was a supervisor. The second official said the woman broke her collarbone when she was pushed from the car in late December.
    The official says the embassy tracked the woman down and paid for her medical expenses. But in the wake of the Cartagena scandal, she has hired an attorney and is suing the embassy. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.
    Panetta is touring South America to meet with his counterparts in the region.
    "I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -DH Lawrence
    "We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are." - The Talmud

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Eastern MO
    Posts
    3,305
    This incident is unfortunate. Many conservative people I know are rallying for the sergeant, but it is what it is, he is the "property" of the US Govt. and swore an oath to his commander in chief.
    marymonde
    +++++++++++++++++++++

    ``Where the Bishop is, there let the multitude of believers be;
    even as where Jesus is, there is the Catholic Church'' Ignatius of Antioch, 1st c. A.D

  7. #7
    I find it hilarious that its not Ok to criticize a communist for what he is but its Ok to smoke your buddys pole no questions asked.......what a snafu we have here. whats next??

  8. #8
    marymonde
    This incident is unfortunate. Many conservative people I know are rallying for the sergeant, but it is what it is, he is the "property" of the US Govt. and swore an oath to his commander in chief.


    Yep. Anyone who served knows no freedom of speech for GI's and their Officers. I have to believe they are told this often. I wish the gentleman well, hope he does OK and helps build the future.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    2,232
    "Screw Obama and I will not follow all orders from him."
    So we are on here beating him up for this comment? Here is a guy that is saying straight out that if the Bastard in Chief told him to start killing us Citizens, he is gonna tell Obby boy to F#CK OFF ! and we are beating him up about it....geesh..
    Rusty in NC
    Don't tread on me!
    sic semper evello mortem tyrannis

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    667
    Ah the military the last place where what you say can actually hurt you.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Bugville
    Posts
    5,439
    He can THINK anything he wants, but he should have had the common sense to know he should not say (or even worse) write it, publically while still in the employ of the US military.
    The thing about common sense is, it is not so common any more
    Sic Semper Tyrannis

    "SO......What's going on in the Land of WTF Just Happened?" ~ Mr. BurtonLake

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