A tea party activist, Marine Gary Stein says he may be forced to give up his nine-year long position with the Marine Corps for raising finger on President Obama’s authority while bashing him on his Facebook page. The marine is also accused of violating the policy of involvement in political activities by the service members. Stein denies all charges, insisting that he only said what was true and no body can deprive him of his right of free speech.
The Camp Pedelton marine is the founder of a Facebook page by the name of “Armed Forces Tea Party", which, according to him, is a platform that encourages free speech rights of fellow service members. Stein first came under government scrutiny when he openly said that while he respects the office of the president, he is not under any obligation to obey Obama’s orders.
In messages posted from January 26th, 2012, onwards, Stein called Obama a "liar” and a "Domestic Enemy our oath speaks about.” He also questioned Obama’s birth certificate and refused to obey his orders. He later on clarified that he meant he would not obey “illegal orders” such as sending military to Syria without the prior approval of the congress.
"I'm completely shocked that this is happening," Stein said after the Corps commander announced taking administrative action against the marine. "I've done nothing wrong. I've only stated what our oath states that I will defend the constitution and that I will not follow unlawful orders. If that's a crime, what is America coming to?"
"The allegations drummed up against me are no more than an agenda by the Marine Corps to use me as an example," Stein said in a statement posted to his page. "If I am guilty of anything it would be that I am American, a freedom loving Conservative, hell bent on defending the constitution and preserving America’s greatness."
Stein says that while he feels no repentance over the comments he has given, he never spoke on behalf of other marines working with him. If Stein is discharged, his current rank of Sergeant will be reduced to lance corporal. He has already been removed from his current job and assigned a new one with no access to a computer.
Stein is not the first service member to have said such a thing about Obama. Army Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin was sentenced to six months behind bars after he declined to accept the order of being deployed to Afghanistan.