Posted on Jan 27, 2016
SFC Platoon Sergeant
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Some people just shake their head when they see the news headlines, scroll past it, or lose their mind and share with the world. I would like to think deep down we all really do care about exposing phonies especially when they are wrongfully receiving benefits that the deserving need. There is a chain reaction that could be talked about forever on how the phonies hinder the process for veterans.
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LTC Psychological Operations Officer
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Edited 8 y ago
I'm becoming more and more uncomfortable with this culture of SMs or Vets walking up to people and demanding proof of service. Lately there were two threads about 75 year old vets getting publicly humiliated by other vets. In one case the vet ( or maybe it was a soldier) wouldn't even believe the vets VA card, claiming anyone could print one out.

So that got me thinking how I would respond if someone saw me wearing either military related awards or badges on Veterans Day or say military badge related hats or Tshirts, and came up and started asking me questions. The truth is, in this day of identity theft and scams, I would probably politely tell that guy to f--k off. I sure as hell would never feel like I owe it to any stranger that walks up to me to produce my military ID card and DD214. Really, who the f--k do these people think they are?

This is the United States. I don't have to respond to "your papers please" from anybody, much less some soldier with a hair up his ass.

And as pissed as that would make me, I can't imagine how my dad would have responded when he was 75 if some twenty something "kid" walked up to him and basically demanded that he, a WWII and Korean War vet, prove to this stranger he is authorized to wear his CIB with star. Even at age 75, he would probably try and fight the guy.

So this whole blood sport of confronting and videoing and humiliating people just because they may be wearing a badge wrong has got to stop. It's unprofessional and unAmerican. As I said, I don't have to tell you where I went to basic, what Ranger School Class I was in, or anything else. It's none of your f--king business. You're a damn total stranger to me. Hell, I have no way of knowing if you are even a soldier yourself. So get out of my face and keep your vigilante bullshit away from me or my dad, or others like us. I'd rather a thousand clowns walk down the street in costume than one vet be humiliated by someone who probably hasn't served a fraction of the time the vet did.

There are laws about actually stealing goods or services by impersonating vets. Leave that to the stores. If they give military discounts to people without requiring appropriate ID cards or documentation, that's their mistake. IMO vets should stay in their lane and stop confronting people.
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MSgt George Murray
MSgt George Murray
3 mo
I agree. It's one's business. I can bet the one demanding the information didn't serve a day in basic training.
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MSgt Tony Marlin
MSgt Tony Marlin
2 mo
I understand when it's outright stolen valor but some get to the point if someone wears a sweatshirt and didn't serve in that unit, STOLEN VALOR. Guess I'm guilty because my son (ret Navy E-7) sent me a bunch of hats for the ships/commands he served on/in which I wear all the time....
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CW3 Ray. Mead
CW3 Ray. Mead
1 mo
WELL SAID!
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COL Ralph Bryan Hanes
COL Ralph Bryan Hanes
17 d
Well said.
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LTC Yinon Weiss
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Edited 8 y ago
I care, but I care more about the Constitution than my own feelings. We can't say "we're a free country, but you can't say or wear those things because it offends me." I'm just not a fan making laws that ban citizens from wearing certain symbols when there are groups of people offended by those symbols. It sounds contrary to everything we serve for.

Now if people want to expose phonies, I'm all for it. Let them be judged by the public.

When it comes to fraud, there are plenty of existing fraud laws to cover those cases. Those who commit fraud should be prosecuted under fraud laws.
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1SG James Kelly
1SG James Kelly
5 mo
We can't say "we're a free country, but you can't say or wear those things because it offends me."

But, but, but it's my hobby - offending assholes.
And I'm so good at it.
:)
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1px xxx
Anonymous
5 mo
SPC Mike Tierney - My father came back from Vietnam and he never encountered any problems either from anyone in public even though he was still active duty.
SGT Karen Emanuelson
SGT Karen Emanuelson
4 mo
Thank you!
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Sgt Timothy Forkes
Sgt Timothy Forkes
3 mo
Great answer. I've seen plenty of people who never served wearing military gear. It's a fashion statement to them. I don't care, it doesn't offend me anymore. I still get all the medical care I need at the VAMC whether they wear camis with rank insignia or not.
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1SG David Niles
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I was going to pass this up and not respond...but I changed my mind.. What other people wear either earned or not takes nothing from what I did and earned. I don't need nor seek approval or recognition from others in regards to my service. I don't need to justify or explain what I have or have not done. I only have an issue with someone getting a concrete benefit from their fraud, i.e... Va medical, va loan ect
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SPC Mike Tierney
SPC Mike Tierney
4 mo
Wearing badges you didn't earn is really not as important as the lying that goes along with making claims that are not true. I am sure there are plenty of active duty soldiers wearing Combat Infantry Badges they never earned. There are not many ribbons that are readily recognized. Maybe Purple Heart, certainly CMH, but not many others.
It tends to be politicians that claim military honors and activity so they can get a sympathy vote. These people are blatant liars and should not be eligible to run for office. Once their lies have been exposed, they certainly should not be eligible to run again. The lies can also be about their college, their jobs, their wealth....Plenty of recent example such as George Santos and Don Trump.
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CAPT Kevin M. McGuinness
CAPT Kevin M. McGuinness
3 mo
Roger that!
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CPL Miguel Velez
CPL Miguel Velez
3 mo
SPC Mike Tierney - That is so LOUD and clear! I forgot how many badges and awards I earned on active duty. I had requested them free through the Military Files, and they were sent to my home mailbox inside of an official Medal Case. Thanks to another veteran who shared the link for the one-time benefit. I also have many veterans or nonveterans challenging me about them. At the beginning of this bullying coming from our own backyard veterans and heroes want-2-Bees, you know what folks? Over the years I became much wiser when approached by these MH jerks. People must be careful out there talking BS about their actions, missions, confirmed kills, and bla-bla-bla. So don't worry if you are for real, then I got your 6.
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COL Ralph Bryan Hanes
COL Ralph Bryan Hanes
17 d
Amen!
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