The Freedom to Lie
Since the 1st Amendment has been the topic of conversation recently I thought I would throw this out there. There is a case that was argued before SCOTUS last week United States vs. Alvarez where a dipshit violated the "Stolen Valor Act" which makes it a crime to falsely claim to have earned a military medal. Alvarez worked for a water management agency and at a group meeting he rose to introduce himself and claimed to have served in the Marines for 25 years and was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. Alvarez never spent one day in the military and was charged under the valor act threatened with 6-12 months in jail.
A good summary of the case is available at http://www.scotusblog.com/?p=139036 or if you are truly nerdy the actual arguments are available at http://www.oyez.org/cases/2010-2019/2011/2011_11_210
I think it is absolutely absurd to throw someone in jail for lying unless real harm has been caused and malicious intent can be demonstrated. It is an absolute outrage that the government even considers throwing an american in jail for a lie that doesn't cause any real harm to anyone. It is offensive, it is a really stupid thing to do and Alvarez should be ashamed unless he did this solely to press a supreme court case against a law he believes in unconstitutional in which case he should be praised as a patriot.
For the record, I didn't earn any medals for valor from the US military. Although I do have several Medals of Honor courtesy of Jane's because I was once a kick ass helicopter pilot. Fucking politicians, on our presidential ballot we should have an "undo" box that when checked repeals all laws signed by the previous president.
It was morality that burned the books of the ancient sages, and morality that halted the free inquiry of the Golden Age and substituted for it the credulous imbecility of the Age of Faith. It was a fixed moral code and a fixed theology which robbed the human race of a thousand years by wasting them upon alchemy, heretic-burning, witchcraft and sacerdotalism.-H.L. Mencken