U.S. ban on transgender troops: A blunt strike on LGBT's rights


President Donald Trump announced Wednesday 26th July that he plans to reinstate a ban on transgender individuals from serving "in any capacity" in the US armed forces.
"After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military," Trump said in a series of tweets Wednesday morning. "Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail."
A 2016 Rand Corp. study commissioned by the Defense Department concluded that letting transgender people serve openly would have a "minimal impact" on readiness and health care costs, largely because there are so few in the military's 1.3 million-member force.
The study put the number of transgender people in the military between 1,320 and 6,630. Gender-change surgery is rare in the general population, and the RAND study estimated the possibility of 30 to 140 new hormone treatments a year in the military, with 25 to 130 gender transition-related surgeries among active service members. The cost could range from $2.4 million and $8.4 million, an amount that would represent an "exceedingly small proportion" of total health care expenditures, the study found.
Trump's decision marks a setback for LGBT rights groups who have expressed concerns that the Trump administration could chip away at progress the community has seen in recent years on the backs of a series of landmark decisions in recent years that have included the legalization of same-sex marriage nationwide and a repeal of the ban on gay people openly serving in the military.
In announcing the plan, Mr. Carter acknowledged the many transgender people who were already serving in the military.
“We have transgender soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines — real, patriotic Americans — who I know are being hurt by an outdated, confusing, inconsistent approach that’s contrary to our value of service and individual merit,” he said.
 Trump's decision is also another setback for the transgender community following his decision several months ago to reverse an Obama administration policy allowing transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice.
The announcement was immediately criticized by LGBT leaders and civil rights groups.
The American Civil Liberties Union called the decision "outrageous and desperate" and said it was exploring ways to fight the policy shift.
"Let us be clear. This has been studied extensively, and the consensus is clear: There are no cost or military readiness drawbacks associated with allowing trans people to fight for their country. The President is trying to score cheap political points on the backs of military personnel who have put their lives on the line for their country," said Joshua Block, the senior staff attorney with the ACLU's LGBT & HIV Project.
Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Michigan, the vice chair of the congressional LGBT caucus, called Trump's decision a "slap in the face to the thousands of transgender Americans already serving in the military" and said it "undermines our military's readiness."
"Anyone who is willing to put on the uniform of the United States and risk their life in service to our country should be celebrated as patriots, regardless of their gender identity. This short-sighted and discriminatory policy will make America less safe," said Kildee.
Some celebrities also joined politicians and the LGBT community in speaking out against Trump's decision.
Retired Olympic gold-medal winner Caitlyn Jenner has had gender reassignment surgery. "There are 15,000 patriotic transgender Americans in the U.S. military fighting for all of us. What happened to your promise to fight for them?" Jenner asked in a tweet retweeting Trump's tweet.
It's an attack on the transgender community. It is shameful and un-American to turn away individuals who are willing to put their lives on the line for a country they love, solely based on their gender identity. It is nothing short of hypocrisy for someone unfit to serve honorably in the presidency to tell honorable, hardworking, patriotic persons who answered their country’s call to service that they are unfit to serve because of who they are. The message that's being sent is that transgender people are less than and are incapable of doing their jobs. Trump "is choosing to retreat in the march toward equality" and calls it divisive. It is a cruel and arbitrary decision designed to humiliate transgender people. He attacked their humanity and their basic human rights./.
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All comments [ 8 ]

LawrenceSamuels 1/8/17 22:09

There are 15,000 patriotic transgender Americans in the U.S. military fighting for all of their country. What happened to U.S. promise to fight for them?

Only Solidar 1/8/17 22:11

The world's LGBTQ media advocacy organization GLAAD released a statement to express outrage over the ban.

MaskOf Zero 1/8/17 22:13

Some lawmakers denounced the move as discriminatory while others claimed potential economic benefits of cutting Pentagon funding for transgender-related health care costs.

Jane smartnic 1/8/17 22:14

The ban is a "cruel and arbitrary decision designed to humiliate transgender Americans who stepped forward to serve their country.

Deck Hero14 1/8/17 22:15

I don't even think Trump knows what transgender means — he probably thinks transgender people are those cars that turn into robots.

Love Peace 1/8/17 22:17

America is so hypocrite! This ban totally violates human rights to protect the country.

yobro yobro 1/8/17 22:19

Chelsea Handler previewed Friday's episode of her Netflix show with a message to the transgender community: "I'm sorry a man that has never served in the military a day in his life is denying you the right to serve your country. Thank you for your service and thank you for your bravery. And to the members of the Republican party who continue to choose party over politics, grow a fucking spine!"

Pack Cassiopian 1/8/17 22:22

Ban on the right of serving the country is that what the U.S. always calls human rights and democracy!

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