Friday, March 23, 2012
Gary Stein, Marine Sgt., Faces Dismissal for Anti-Obama Facebook Posts

Gary Stein, Marine Sgt., Faces Dismissal for Anti-Obama Facebook Posts

Gary Stein, a member of the Marine Corps and an avid conservative, is facing dismissal from the armed forces for his outspoken Facebook page criticizing the Obama administration and their policies.

Sgt. Gary Stein formed the Armed Forces Tea Party Facebook page, and its constant criticism of Obama policies- along with Stein's adamant refusal to follow "unlawful orders"- has landed the Marine in a world of trouble.

"I am facing an Administrative Discharge from the Marine Corps for simply expressing my right to free speech and stating I would not follow unlawful orders. … Sounds crazy right?" wrote Stein in the Armed Forces Tea Party group, which boasts over 20,000 members.

Stein posted March 8 that he would not follow unlawful orders from President Obama, like kill Americans or take away their right to bear arms, for instance. The post caught the attention of his commanding officers in a San Diego boot camp, who began investigating Stein and the group.

"They're entitled to their opinions but I still think this is a freedom of speech issue," said Stein. "I'm standing up for the Constitution."

Despite his insistence that his right to free speech is being violated, the Marine may have violated a military policy limiting the free speech of members, especially openly criticizing the Commander-in-Chief. David Loy of the American Civil Liberties Union told The Associated Press that because of the Facebook page's name, many could associate Stein's opinions with that of the military.

"The military has a very strong interest and appropriately so to remaining neutral," said Loy. "The last thing we want is our military taking side on political issues."

Stein did certainly take sides. On the page, he constantly pointed some states' challenging of the President's Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare. He also posted a letter from nine Attorneys General who dispute the legality of various Obama administration policies.

Stein, who has served eight years in the Marine Corps, sought to reenlist. He could be dismissed before that happens, however, and demoted to lance corporal. Currently, he has been reassigned to a desk job with no access to computers for the time being.



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