A federal court back in November ordered the Trump administration to begin accepting transgender recruits on January 1 into the U.S. Military, per a previous Obama policy. In the weeks that followed, several federal courts, including at least one appeals court, ruled Trump’s attempt to ban transgender service members could not stand and ordered him to begin accepting transgender service members January 1.
The New York Times reports “nearly all … transgender recruits who have tried to join up since a federal court ordered the Trump administration not to ban them from the military,” are “still waiting” to hear back from the Pentagon, run by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis (photo, with Trump) after having applied on or after January 1.
Since those federal court rulings, “scores have applied — but it appears almost none are being accepted.”
“The Defense Department refused requests for statistics on transgender enlistments. But Sparta, an organization for transgender recruits, troops and veterans, says that out of its 140 members who are trying to enlist, only two have made it into the service since Jan. 1.”
Among those The Times mentions are a man who has “two martial arts black belts,” “aced the military aptitude test, and organized the stack of medical records required to show he was stable and healthy enough to serve.”
Others include a rugby coach, a substitute teacher, someone who “repairs tractors and heaves bales of hay for the cattle that he and his grandmother keep on a small hillside farm in Appalachia,” and another applicant who “moves 200-pound tanks of carbon dioxide for a job creating special effects for Broadway shows.”
It seems clear the Trump administration is doing everything it can to find reasons to reject any applicant who is transgender, and at a time when the military is in desperate need of new recruits.
“One applicant in Ohio spent five months submitting more and more medical records, and then was rejected in late May because of knee surgery he had as an infant,” 25 years prior.
“We’ve heard people are meeting with mystifying obstacles,” Shannon Minter, the the legal director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR). “We want to give the military the benefit of the doubt, but at this point so few applicants have been accepted, there is reason to be concerned that there is some passive resistance to the injunctions, and people are getting slow-walked.”
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
116 Lawmakers Call for End to Transgender Military Service Ban
116 members of Congress sent a letter Wednesday to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Attorney General William Barr to call for the elimination of the ban on open transgender military service. This follows the June 15, 2020 Supreme Court ruling that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects LGBTQ people from workplace discrimination. Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) spearheaded the initiative.
“This policy is an attack on transgender service members who are risking their lives to serve our country and it should be reversed immediately,” DelBene said.
On April 12, 2019, the Trump administration banned transgender individuals from serving openly in the military. The discriminatory policy denies transgender people the ability to enlist in the military and puts transgender troops at risk of being discharged for living openly. It also denies them transition-related health services.
“In light of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling…we urge the Department of Defense (DOD) to immediately update its policies to eliminate the ban on open transgender military service,” lawmakers wrote in the letter. “Additionally, to prevent further harm to transgender service members, we urge the DOD to instruct the Department of Justice (DOJ) to negotiate the end to litigation challenging the ban.”
“It’s past time for the Trump administration to end its ban on transgender troops serving openly,” said Mara Keisling, Executive Director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. “The policy is hateful and discriminatory, and puts at risk our country’s national security by purging brave transgender people from the military despite their honorable service to the American people. The administration must move quickly to right this wrong and protect transgender members of the military.”
“It’s crucial that the Department of Defense remove this unconstitutional transgender military ban and ensure any qualified patriot is able to serve,” said Modern Military Association of America Interim Executive Director Jennifer Dane. “Thousands of transgender service members have already more than proven themselves with honor and distinction, and this discriminatory barrier that has nothing to do with their ability to accomplish the mission must be taken down. We are thankful for Congresswoman Suzan DelBene’s leadership, and we urge the Department of Defense to take swift action.”
The transgender service ban was put in place against the recommendations of several former Surgeons General. Additionally, the country’s preeminent health care organizations, including the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Medical Association, have all affirmed that transgender people can competently serve in the military.
The letter was signed by Representatives Alma S. Adams, Ph.D. (NC-12), Colin Allred (TX-32), Karen Bass (CA-37), Ami Bera, M.D. (CA-07), Donald S. Beyer Jr. (VA-08), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE-At-large), Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01), Julia Brownley (CA-26), Salud O. Carbajal (CA-24), Ed Case (HI-01), Sean Casten (IL-06),
A copy of the letter can be found here.
Trump Again Targets Transgender People – This Time in New Proposal to Rescind Obama-Era Healthcare Protections
President Donald Trump, through his Dept. of Health and Human Services, is once again targeting transgender people, this time by proposing a new rule that would rescind Obama-era healthcare protections.
The proposed rule would let doctors and other medical professionals, and health care organizations discriminate against transgender people by allowing them to deny care to someone on the basis of gender identity.
“Predicated on little more than prejudice, this proposal will abandon 2 million Americans who already face significant barriers to accessing adequate and life-saving health care,” Mara Keisling, Executive Director for the National Center for Transgender Equality, said in a statement. “This is not about free health care or special treatment. It’s about the right of every American to be treated with dignity when they walk into an emergency room, meet a new doctor, or find the right insurance plan. If permitted, this rule will promote ignorance and hate that no American should have to face while seeking care, and we are ready to fight it with everything we’ve got.”
The Dept. of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights, headed by Roger Severino, will be in charge of the new rule, including determining if it will go into effect. The Human Rights Campaign has called Severino a “radical anti-LGBTQ activist.”
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.
Trans Americans Still Face Tremendous Discrimination in the Workforce
- 'NO SHAME'2 days ago
‘You Singlehandedly Blocked the Emmett Till Antilynching Act’: Rand Paul Scorched Over His MLK ‘Commemoration’
- WTH?2 days ago
Lara Trump Thinks Microsoft Office Assistant ‘Clippy’ Is a Real Person Spying on Everything She Writes
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM3 days ago
Die-Hard MAGA Trump Supporters in Arizona Think ‘It’s Very Possible’ States Will ‘Decertify’ the 2020 Election
- 'WHAT'S THE NEXT LINE?'2 days ago
‘Performative Drivel’: Marco Rubio Mocked and Schooled After Taking MLK Quote Out of Context
- COMMENTARY1 day ago
Legal Experts Blast ‘Jerk Gorsuch’ for Refusing to Wear a Mask – Forcing Sotomayor to Stay in Chambers
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM1 day ago
Former Top FBI Official: ‘Concerning’ Ginni Thomas Signed Letter Saying Jan. 6 Participants ‘Have Done Nothing Wrong’
- PARTNERING WITH HATE AND ANTI-IMMIGRANT GROUPS2 days ago
‘Unprecedented’: Trump Tried to ‘Exert Extreme Partisan Influence Over the Census Bureau’ Docs Reveal
- 'STANDING ALONE'21 hours ago
Top Democratic Donor Groups Pulling Endorsements – and Funding – From Sinema and Manchin Over Filibuster