Board Recommends Marine Be Discharged For Comments About Obama | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

Board Recommends Marine Be Discharged For Comments About Obama

A U.S. Marine sergeant who posted "contemptuous" comments and images about President Obama on the Web should be dismissed and given an other-than-honorable discharge, a Marine Corps administrative board recommended late Thursday evening.

The case against Sgt. Gary Stein, 26, has raised questions about how far the military can go to restrict the First Amendment rights of its personnel.

As the Los Angeles Times reports, "lawyers for Stein said that because his comments were made off-duty, not in his capacity as a Marine, they are protected by the 1st Amendment. ... Lawyers for his command say Stein has violated several orders restricting Marines from making partisan political statements or comments 'contemptuous; of the chain of command, including the commander in chief."

During the hearing, prosecutors presented evidence that Stein had posted images of Obama's face on a donkey, had called the president a coward and had said the commander in chief is "the economic and religious enemy," the Times says. He also argued that the president should be defeated in this November's election.

Stein's Facebook page is here. On it, he says "I am a Conservative, hell bent on defending the constitution and preserving America's greatness. I do not represent the views of the United States Armed Forces."

The Associated Press adds that, "the board's recommendations go to a general who will either accept or deny them. If the general disagrees with the board, the case could go to the secretary of the Navy."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Mary Ellen Mark And The Caged Prostitutes Of Mumbai

The photographer, who died this week, turned her lens on the marginal people of the world. One of her most acclaimed projects was her series of photos taken in the brothels of Mumbai.
NPR

Trickster Journalist Explains Why He Duped The Media On Chocolate Study

John Bohannon, the man behind a stunt that bamboozled many news organizations into publishing junk science on dieting, talks to NPR's Robert Siegel about why he carried out the scheme.
NPR

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley To Seek Democratic Nomination

O'Malley, also a former Baltimore mayor, has made no secret of his desire to run, despite his lack of a national profile. He faces an uphill battle against front-runner Hillary Clinton.
NPR

Tech Giants Compete ... For Your Vacation Albums

With ballgames, family reunions and trips to the beach, summer is full of chances to snap photos. Apple and Google are in a battle to help you store, organize and share all those visual mementos.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.