Trump declared that transgender people weren’t fit to serve in any branch of the armed service in any capacity, siting a strain and distraction to the United States military readiness. His exact words were:
“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. 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. Thank you”
Taking away the right of transgender people to have access to the economic prosperity that the military can provide is flat out discrimination and wrong.
Luckily, this President is too stupid to understand that tweets don’t translate to actual policy change. But this is significant in its another indication of the culture Trump is trying to create. I’m not surprised at the misguided propaganda or the pathologizing of transgender people by this President, the Republican party, or conservative thought in general. They have never been in alliance with us nor have they shown an iota of care for our human rights or treatment. This, intersecting with Trump’s obsession with dismantling Obama’s legacy, was only a matter of time before he began to strip the protections guaranteed to us by the last administration. They then attacked all LGBT people by filing a brief stating that sexual orientation wasn’t protected by the civil rights acts. We are literally going backwards
For me this isn’t about patriotism. The United States military has a legacy of imperialism and colonization which makes love of nation and call of duty foreign concepts that don’t align with my politics, empathy or awareness. However, taking away the inalienable right of transgender people to have access to the economic prosperity and stability that a career in the military can provide is flat out discrimination and wrong. Pretending that trans folks’ medical needs are a strain on the military’s budget or is a distraction from its readiness in neither based on data or reality. The fact of the matter is that Trump and his cronies in office are bigots who are less concerned with governing and more with pushing through a racist, homophobic and transphobic agenda that seeks to devalue anyone that isn’t white, straight, rich or male.
If he comes for trans folks in the military then he will attempt to take away our rights to be parents, teachers, to occupy public office or use public spaces.
Transgender servicemembers have become a sacrificial pawn and distraction from the greed and incompetence that has riddled this administration with scandal. This is just the beginning. If he comes for trans folks in the military then he will attempt to take away our rights to be parents, teachers, to occupy public office or use public spaces. We can’t appeal to the empathy of people who have no empathy for others or are dedicated to dehumanizing and oppressing us. We have to turn in and dig deep. From grassroots organizers to celebrities and heavily funded organizations, the time is now to stop relying on this heartless government and strategize around the resources and strengths we have at home. There is no creating allyship here. We are on our own.