In a series of tweets yesterday morning, President Trump announced that transgender individuals will not be able to serve in the United States military, in any form. This comes after former president Barack Obama allowed transgender people to actively join the military in June of 2016. It is estimated that before the ban was lifted last year that between 1,320 to 6,630 service members were transgender. That number is estimated to have grown since the ban was lifted but there is no official tally.
Trump’s decision has caused outrage among those with socially liberal leanings, especially activists of many LGBT groups and their supporters. The common question is why? Trump cites “medical costs and disruption” as reasons for the harsh decision. Well that makes absolutely no sense at all. The military pays ten times more on giving troops Viagra and other medications to combat Erectile Dysfunction than it does on healthcare services for transgender individuals. It is estimated that the military pays a paltry $8 million per year out of the $600 billion military budget. So that obviously proves that cost isn’t an actual issue. I am also unaware of any disruptions that transgender soldiers have caused but maybe someone can fill me in on that.
Trump supporters may not like to hear it, but this another broken campaign promise. On the campaign trail, Trump vowed to support the LGBT community. The decision made yesterday is obviously a broken vow. The news has also caused backlash to an Ivanka Trump tweet that stated “I am proud to support my LGBTQ friends and the LGBTQ Americans who have made immense contributions to our society and economy.” This administration cannot be trusted and has no problem doing the complete opposite of what Trump or other members of his inner circle claimed they would do. Their words are less than worthless.
Now for Donald Trump himself. Trump got a deferment during the draft for the Vietnam War due to “bone spurs.” Now I have never served in the military or plan to serve but I think it is hypocritical of Trump to decide that a certain group of people can’t fight and defend our country. Many transgender individuals have given more for this country than Trump and his entire family has and I don’t think that’s a very debatable statement.
In summary, the decision made by the White House is shameful. I understand transgender people can be taboo to many people but there is always something I like to say in defense: how has a transgender person negatively affected your life? My guess is they haven’t. You don’t have to understand it, you just have to respect and accept it. I wish President Trump and his supporters that agree with this action had the strength and courage to do that.