Megyn Kelly and Stolen Valor

| February 9, 2010

Megyn Kelly discusses the Stolen Valor Act in regards to the First Amendment with two other lawyers.

I think Julia Morrow’s grandfather would disagree that he “won” the Purple Heart considering the prerequisites of that particular award. And “Everybody lies” hardly seems an adequate defense.

Category: Phony soldiers

Comments (22)

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  1. TSO says:

    They are all looking at this the wrong way anyway. The law was passed, and thus if it is not to be applied, it must be found unconstitutional. Therefore, it isn’t that this is just lies or anything else, the Defense has to show that the speech in question was one that is constitutionally protected. And the presumption is towards finding something constitutionally valid. The Court has never held that a deliberate mistatement of fact is constitutionally protected. This whole nonsense bullshit about pick up lines in bars is simply absurd. No one has yet passed a law to that effect, and there would be no compelling reason for the gov’t to do so.

    So, for those opposing this law, show me where the Supremes have ever held that untrue speech is constitutionally protected, or prove to me that the Gov’t has no compelling interest.

  2. TSO says:

    Oh, and clearly here there is a bright line between facts that are ascertainable, and ones that are not. For instance, does anyone think it is constutional to tell the police you were in Cleveland when in fact you were in Toledo? Would there be a constitutional right to perjury? Or impersonation? Or any like thing?

    And as for harm, everyone of these people gained from their lies, whether in tangible benefits (money to the CVA, free tix etc) or through untangible, membership in the exclusive club that is those of us who paid the price of membership.

  3. Toothless Dawg says:

    Listening to that video almost cost me a small TV in my home office. As I come away from it, I am incensed that America has come to the point that we need to listen to three bimbo’s who have absolutely no idea about what they are talking. I normally like Megyn but my gosh man … sometimes (this case in point) she comes off as some idiotic blonde trying to justify being blonde by her idjit statements.

    For the posers, 20 years to convince Bubba that they are really ‘bad dudes’. Well … thinking about that again … maybe 30 years. Well again thinking about the sentence …

  4. Old Tanker says:

    2 of those three bimbos were defending the stolen valor act, including Megyn…..

  5. proof says:

    “Everybody lies. Where are we going to draw the line?”

    Er, excuse me, but we’ve already drawn that line! What justification do you have to re-draw it?
    We tolerate much odious speech, but phony soldiers should be punished when exposed. They cheapen the sacrifices made by the genuine article.

  6. Susan says:

    Excellent analysis TSO. The reality is that the First Amendment does not protect provably untrue speech – that is why we have laws regarding slander, perjury and lying to authorities (just ask Martha Stewart!). The First Amendment protects debate and opinion, not knowing lies.

    The time for debate about harms etc. was before the law was enacted. Now it is presumptively Constitutional and all this crap about “no harm” runs against a Congressional finding so the burden is on those who think it proscribes protected speech.

  7. fm2176 says:

    What many people seem to forget is that without Soldiers and their comrades in uniform this country would not exist, period. In today’s volunteer military, those few of us whom serve do so with honor and integrity that our forebears would admire. Our predecessors made the same sacrifices we do and to defend those who would steal the honor and lineage of millions of veterans is to demonstrate ignorance of what our fighting men and women have contributed.

    I wonder if those who would repeal the Stolen Valor Act see any difference in the following lies:

    “Yeah, I “won” a Purple Heart.”

    “Yeah, I’m an FBI agent.”

    “Don’t worry, I’m a paramedic.”

    I could go on, but I’m not feeling too creative. Point is, “everybody lies”. Now, if I want to take my federal service a bit further and claim to be a Federal Agent, why can’t I? I mean, no harm, no foul, right? All’s fair in love, war, and barrooms. Oh, wait, LEOs are protected against impersonators. I forget that those of us who protect even the protectors should not be afforded the same courtesy.

  8. Toothless Dawg says:


    I went back and listened to the video once again after reading your post. I may have over-reacted to some extent but I’m not sure because I still can’t understand what the brunette on the ‘right side of the screen’ was saying. I know I’m hard of hearing nowadays but I will try listen more closely to what they are saying again. I wish I had adjustments to slow down their talk … and raise the volume (more than my speakers allow)

  9. USMC Chris says:

    Two things that NO ONE is pointing out. It’s so fricken in your face that I’m pretty appalled that no one has said anything about this.

    1) Megyn Kelly is so freaking hot. Seriously. Like SUPER hot. If she were stove, I’d lay my meat on her and we could start cooking.

    2) I think that Alvarez guy isn’t just faking he’s a soldier. I think he’s actually an iguana in human costume. Did you see that guy’s crazy dead eye looking in a completely different direction as his other eye? I say check this dude’s refrigerator. If it’s filled with various vietnamese snacks of crickets, maggots, and fucking stick bugs, then I say we throw the book at him, and alien autopsy the fuck out of him.

    The shame of you guys missing such fackin obvious points. I shake my head in disgust.

  10. Debra says:

    LOL… Spoken like a true Marine. Semper Fi. (I ain’t a Marine, but I’m around ’em all day, so that should count for something, shouldn’t it?) Plus, all my venison came from a Marine, so I know a lot about it. 😀

  11. FOMSG says:

    I think Maria could stand to spend a little time in A-stan. Maybe “win” herself a Purple Heart. Bet she wouldn’t like it if I went around calling myself a lawyer and claiming to graduate from her law school.

  12. ponsdorf says:

    Thanks TSO and Susan for the simple clarity.

    I’ll still posit that the law should have had added a sort of misdemeanor level since there appears to be two distinct levels defined in it already. That would have covered ‘the drunk in a bar scenario’.

    BUT, the law is what it is!

  13. Ray says:

    Hey… it works for Branum. 😀

  14. Dave Thul says:

    Hello TAH readers! My Name is David Johnson, and as the President of the Federal Reserve for 48 years and close adviser to the last 4 US Presidents, I have a fantastic investing opportunity for you. Having won the Presidential Medal of Economic Freedom and the Consumer Reports Best Investment Scheme for 2010, I am going to share with you my secret wealth building plan-

    Any ‘exaggerations’ later found to be listed above are clearly covered under the first amendment under Ms Morrow’s understanding of free speech.

    Seriously, if this is what constitutes free speech in America, than any of Claymore’s ‘no shit there I was’ stories can be subpoenaed as evidence for a grand jury investigation.

  15. Yat Yas says:

    The key was these two dumb-asses weren’t at some bar telling war stories, but were actively trying to profit from their lies. Plus if you get caught wearing valorous awards that is definitely alot different than some loser trying to impress some hottie by telling a lie.

  16. Chuck Z says:

    “Everybody lies.”

    Let’s explore that. Anyone ever heard their kids say “but everybody’s doing it!” Doesn’t hold water.

    The NOW has said (either they or a similar band of screeching harpies)that every time a woman has sex, it’s rape.

    Well, if everyone is doing it, that makes rape okay then, right?

    Of course, in the grand scheme of things, stolen valor isn’t the worst thing a person can do. It isn’t rape, or murder, or getting elected to a high-level office in the government without meeting the constitutional requirements.

    That’s also why the maximum sentence he’ll get is a year. It isn’t even a felony, but a federal misdemeanor. Nonetheless, what he did is a crime, it is a slight on veterans and true heroes, and just think how “bad assed” people will think he is after a year in the big house.”

  17. settlesdown says:

    Here’s my take:

    You can only get up to 1 year for violating the Stolen Valor Act (according to news article). That being said, if the People want to punish these guys (and I do) they would be better served by also prosecuting them for fraud (Because, they lied in order to benefit financially.) I’m sure these dirtbags get paid a public speaking fee. You could also have the audited by the IRS.

    People should also hold any politician accountable for propping up these liars. If they can’t do a simple background check on these guys, do we really want them making policy?

    Ultimately, I can see how this would encroach on the First Amendment but there are other ways to get these turds.

  18. Jonn Lilyea says:

    Actually, he can get a year for each DSC, PH, and Silver Star and six months for each of the lesser medals he didn’t earn and six months for each of the badges, if I read the Act correctly. That’s probably why he had a panic attack – doin’ the math. As Barbie tells us, girls don’t like math.

  19. Dave Thul says:

    Any chance the Stolen Valor act falls under the 3 strikes and you’re out law?

  20. Just A Grunt says:

    What grinds my gears on this whole debate is how it has been boiled down to telling a lie in a bar to pick up a chick.

    That isn’t it at all. The people who are being prosecuted under this law went far beyond telling a lie. They wormed their way into the inner circle of politicians, betrayed the public trust, and in general damaged the reputation of all service members by causing all people who claim to be veterans to come under yet another layer of scrutiny.

    Using their logic, remember know some of these people gave speeches and promoted causes using their “military honors” as a hook, I could claim to be a doctor and then go on Oprah and dispense medical advice. I mean come on I do have first aid training and all I am trying to do is impress some chick.

    No harm no foul right, even though I told you to go home and start an IV of bleach to rid you fat cells.

    How about finding out the guy who manages your retirement account flunked out of the 7th grade but he told you he always manages to return a 120% return on your investment.

    We put the Bernie Madoffs and other impostors in jail and those who seek to misrepresent their service in an effort to gain from it, whether financially or through influencing lawmakers or simply duping an unsuspecting public like some sort of grifter scam artist should be prosecuted too.

    It makes me mad that somehow misrepresenting military service is not as egregious as pretending to be some other type of professional like a say a climate change scientist.

    This argument simply cannot be allowed to devolve into a case of some guy in a bar trying to impress a chick. Besides how hard is it to pick up a girl if you first ask if she voted for Obama?

    That is what we call a gimmee.

  21. Claymore says:

    I remember it like it was yesterday man…we had been sent into the ‘ville for power converters when this old dude and some kid rolled in on their hopped up dune thingy. We asked these two jackasses if they had seem some stolen electronics we were on the look out for, and the old dude started some shit about us not needing to see their ID, but we could see the damn things hanging out of their trunk. What I couldn’t effin’ believe was what happened next; Our squad leader let the dudes go! Boy the shit hit the fan then. Next thing I know, we’re all packed up and headed to some godforsaken frozen wasteland full of these giant bear things that tried to eat us. I have a really bad feeling about this, man. Frickin’ Chimpy Bushitler’s fault, man.

    CPL T.K. “1138” McCloney
    Ft. Hoth

  22. Sam Elliot says:

    My name is not really Sam Elliot.