Marines discharge sergeant for Facebook posts


Locutus
#1
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 nearly 10 years in the Corps said he was disappointed by the decision. He has argued that he was exercising his free-speech rights.

"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 be denied. 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.
 
EagleSmack
+4
#2  Top Rated Post
Well... as a Sgt. he should know better. If one of his LCPLs said he wasn't going to obey his orders I am sure he'd have a disagreement.

Chain of Command... it is drilled into the Marines DAY 1 on Parris Island... and the President is at the absolute top of the Chain of Command.

Giving him a Other than Honorable discharge I thought was pretty harsh but that's the Marines. They always come down a little bit harder than the other services. I wonder if he was offered NJP (Non Judicial Punishment) and he refused and wanted a Court Martial instead. If they did offer NJP the most that could have happened was reduction to Corporal, Half months pay for 2 months, and extra duty. If you refuse NJP and want a trial you can get REAL F***ed with regards to punishment. As it stands now, it is as if he never served a day. He loses his veterans status.

Should of kept it ZIP Sergeant!
Last edited by EagleSmack; Apr 25th, 2012 at 04:05 PM..
 
Goober
Free Thinker
#3
Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmackView Post

Well... as a Sgt. he should know better. If one of his LCPLs said he wasn't going to obey his orders I am sure he'd have a disagreement.

Chain of Command... it is drilled into the Marines DAY 1 on Parris Island... and the President is at the absolute top of the Chain of Command.

Giving him a Other than Honorable discharge I thought was pretty harsh but that's the Marines. They always come down a little bit harder than the other services. I wonder if he was offered NJP (Non Judicial Punishment) and he refused and wanted a Court Martial instead. If they did offer NJP the most that could have happened was reduction to Corporal, Half months pay for 2 months, and extra duty. If you refuse NJP and want a trial you can get REAL F***ed with regards to punishment. As it stands now, it is as if he never served a day. He loses his veterans status.

Should of kept it ZIP Sergeant!

From what I understand he was told on more than one occasion to delete these comments.
We have what is referred to as CO's punishment. But you can also take the Courts Martial. And if found guilty the price is higher.

Therefore he should have also been charged under the DFA - Dumb Fuks Act. Every Military has a catch all charge.
He could have then taken this to court over denial of free speech.
And he should know it is not a job but a Profession.

Many Canadians are unaware that certain rights afforded under law to civilians are overridden in the numerous Acts/Legislation pertaining to the Military. I would assume it is the same in the US Military.
 
wulfie68
No Party Affiliation
+2
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by GooberView Post

Therefore he should have also been charged under the DFA - Dumb Fuks Act. Every Military has a catch all charge. He could have then taken this to court over denial of free speech.And he should know it is not a job but a Profession.

I'm not an expert but I'm pretty sure that its written into the enlistment contracts that certain rights (such as freedom of speech as it pertains to political statements) are limited and subject to the judgement of the individual's superiors/chain of command...
 
EagleSmack
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by wulfie68View Post

I'm not an expert but I'm pretty sure that its written into the enlistment contracts that certain rights (such as freedom of speech as it pertains to political statements) are limited and subject to the judgement of the individual's superiors/chain of command...

Absolutely. We sign a contract and take an oath. The Sgt. is in the wrong and I am doubtful any appeal will be successful.
 
gerryh
#6
dumb *** just doesn't cover it.
 
EagleSmack
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by GooberView Post

From what I understand he was told on more than one occasion to delete these comments.
We have what is referred to as CO's punishment. But you can also take the Courts Martial. And if found guilty the price is higher.

.

We call it NJP or "Office Hours". When charged with a minor infraction the powers that be may offer the accused NJP instead of a court martial. He/she has the choice to accept or ask for a Court Martial where the punishments could be more harsh if convicted.

However in serious cases or repetitive behavoir NJP may not even be offered.

Quote: Originally Posted by gerryhView Post

dumb *** just doesn't cover it.

Well that's usually what we would say when someone got busted doing something stupid.

"He's going to Office Hours for what!? ... what a dumb ***."
 
Goober
Free Thinker
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmackView Post

We call it NJP or "Office Hours". When charged with a minor infraction the powers that be may offer the accused NJP instead of a court martial. He/she has the choice to accept or ask for a Court Martial where the punishments could be more harsh if convicted.

However in serious cases or repetitive behavoir NJP may not even be offered.

We also have a saying "March the Guilty Bastard in". I would guess you guys have a similiar saying.
 
L Gilbert
No Party Affiliation
+1
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by LocutusView Post

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 nearly 10 years in the Corps said he was disappointed by the decision. He has argued that he was exercising his free-speech rights.

"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 be denied. 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.

Last I heard, if you are an active Marine, your a$$ as well as your opinions are owned by the Marines.
 
gopher
No Party Affiliation
+1
#10
Like it or not he President is CIC and he's gotta obey Marine Corps protocols.
 
DaSleeper
#11

Obama gets 39corpsman39 wrong - YouTube

 
The Old Medic
Conservative
+1
#12
This man was told, repeatedly, to delete those comments, and he refused to do that. He was separated under an "Other Than Honorable" Discharge, which will affect him for the rest of his life.

He will be unlikely to be able to enter ANY profession that requires a license or a background check (physician, nurse, school teacher, real estate agent, stockbroker). He will be unable to obtain a bond, he won' even be able to work in a Pawn Shop.

He will never be allowed to work for ANY level of government.

To put it mildly, he screwed himself. And, he knew exactly what he was doing. Every member of the Armed Forces is trained, from their first day, that they do NOT have total freedom of speech, and that they are NEVER allowed to denigrate their superiors.

Frankly, I think this guy is lucky that the Marines did NOT take this to a Court Martial. He would have had no defense, and would have received at least a "Bad Conduct" Discharge, which would hurt him even more.

By the way, for those who wonder, I served 10 years on active duty with the U.S. Army, and left as a Sergeant First Class (E-7).
 

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