Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-10-18
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

It's official: Trump directs Pentagon to enact trans military ban
by Chris Johnson, Washington Blade
2017-08-27

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Nearly one month after announcing via Twitter he'd ban transgender people from U.S. military, President Donald Trump made good on his promise in a memo to the Pentagon Aug. 25 enacting a ban on their service—although the fate of transgender people currently in the armed forces remains to be seen.

In a memo to the Pentagon and Department of Homeland Security dated Aug. 25, Trump asserted the Obama administration "failed to identify a sufficient basis" to end the ban on transgender military service in June 2016 and directs the U.S. military to put the prohibition back in place.

"I am directing the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to the U.S. Coast Guard, to return to the longstanding policy and practice on military service by transgender individuals that was in place prior to June 2016 until such time as a sufficient basis exists upon which to conclude that terminating that policy and practice would not have the negative effects discussed above," Trump wrote.

Citing dubious concerns openly transgender service will have negative impact on military effectiveness and lethality as well as unit cohesion, Trump concludes "further study is needed to ensure that continued implementation of last year's policy change would not have those negative effects."

Under the Obama administration, former Defense Secretary Ashton Carter lifted the longstanding medical regulation barring transgender people serving in the armed forces. The guidance from the White House effectively reverses that decision.

The Trump memo has two major components. The first continues the Pentagon practice of barring openly transgender people from enlisting in the armed forces. Although the Obama change allowed transgender people to come out in the military without fear of discharge, it delayed transgender accession until a later time. That delay—already extended by Defense Secretary James Mattis to continue until 2018—will now be continued indefinitely.

The second part of the memo bars U.S. government resources "to fund sex reassignment surgical procedures for military personnel" except in case wheres the procedure is necessary to protect the health of an individual already undergoing transition. The memo gives the Pentagon until March 23 to implement this change.

It's not immediately clear whether this policy means dependents of U.S. service members are also ineligible for U.S. government funds for gender reassignment surgery.

The memo also instructs the Pentagon to prepare by Feb. 21 an implementation plan for the instituting policies aimed at blocking transgender people from open service.

With respect to transgender people who began serving openly in the military after the Obama-era change, the memo gives significantly leeway to the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security, which operates the Coast Guard. An estimated 15,000 transgender people currently serve in the U.S. armed forces, according to the Williams Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles.

"As part of the implementation plan, the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, shall determine how to address transgender individuals currently serving in the United States military," the memo says.

The White House was expected to do so by the end of last week. A senior White House official, on Aug. 23, told the Los Angeles Blade the policy would be made final and sent to Pentagon before Trump left for Camp David over the weekend.

Dana White, assistant for public affairs to the secretary of defense, affirmed the Pentagon had received the memo, but withheld further comment.

"The Department of Defense has received formal guidance from the White House in reference to transgender personnel serving in the military," White said. "More information will be forth coming."

The Department of Homeland Security didn't immediately respond late Friday to confirm it had received the memo or lay out its implementation plan for the Coast Guard.

Transgender rights advocates blasted Trump for instituting the memo, pledging to fight the ban on transgender military service in court.

Matt Thorn, executive director of the LGBT military group OutServe-SLDN, said in a statement the policy change against transgender service amounts to "nothing less than a purge" from Trump.

"He is implementing this purge based on bigotry, motivated by agents of an ideology that has no concern for the national defense, and in blatant disregard of the experience of career officers who spent more than a year developing and implementing the current policy," Thorn said.

Denying "a man with a demonstrated incompetence in managing the small staff of the White House should have any credibility" in leading the U.S. military, Thorn said a joint lawsuit is forthcoming from his organization and the LGBT legal group Lambda Legal.

Ashley Broadway-Mack, president of the American Military Partner Association, called on Congress or the courts to take action to reverse Trump's policy.

"This horrifying, vicious assault on thousands of actively serving troops has turned from reckless tweets into an unabashedly discriminatory policy aiming to purge the military of thousands of transgender men and women," Broadway-Mack said in a statement. "We unequivocally condemn this ban as an unpatriotic attack on currently serving troops and qualified transgender recruits who want to serve their country."

Attorneys for National Center for Lesbian Rights and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, which had already filed a lawsuit against Trump ahead of the guidance, said their current litigation will stop the ban.

"This policy is a shameful slap in the face to people who put their lives on the line everyday to defend our country," said Jennifer Levi, GLAD Transgender Rights Project Director. "Our military is strongest when all people who are fit to serve have the opportunity to do so. This unprecedented policy amounts to a purge of qualified, contributing troops, and will serve only to undermine unit cohesion and weaken military readiness."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi ( D-Calif. ) also condemned the policy change in a statement, insisting the transgender ban is based on "prejudice, not the national defense."

"A study commissioned by the Department of Defense itself found that the cost of providing medically necessary care for transgender troops would be miniscule," Pelosi said. "In fact, every year, the Pentagon spends five times more on Viagra than they would for transition-related care. The President of the United States should have more respect for the transgend

This article is from the Washington Blade, as part of the National LGBT Newspaper Association.


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

New Study: Attitudes toward gays, lesbians changing in developing world 2017-10-18 - Washington — Today, Center for Global Development Senior Fellow Charles Kenny and Researcher Dev Patel released a new studythat finds that just as ...


Gay News

GUEST COLUMN Fighting transphobia 2017-10-18 - A lot of people believe that being completely open with your significant other is an important part of any relationship, but to what ...


Gay News

World news: Sydney cops, torture victim, suicide study, Prince Harry 2017-10-18 - Four cops in Sydney claim they were singled out for investigation on drug charges simply because they are gay, NewNowNext.com reported. In early ...


Gay News

Global Medical Body Condemns Forced Anal Exams, Homosexuality Tests 2017-10-18 - ( Nairobi, October 17, 2017 ) — Doctors, medical professionals, and national medical associations should heed the World Medical Association's October 2017 resolution ...


Gay News

GLAD and NCLR Call Out Trump Administration For Transgender Military Ban 2017-10-18 - Former Top Military Leaders File Powerful Statements of Support, As 15 State Attorneys General, National Advocacy Groups, and Leading Health Care Organizations Join ...


Gay News

National roundup: Stonewall, intersex case, Caitlyn Jenner, Kamala Harris 2017-10-17 - The Trump administration ( and the National Park Service ) withdrew support for a ceremony at Stonewall National Monument that involved the dedication ...


Gay News

Dining news: New hotel spot, Sable chef, Lawry's/SideDoor event 2017-10-17 - —Marriott Marquis Chicago, 2121 S. Prairie Ave., has announced the opening of its new restaurant concept, Woven & Bound. The hotel and restaurant's ...


Gay News

Attny Gen Madigan files brief opposing ban on transgender military service 2017-10-16 - Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan, along with 14 other attorneys general, filed an amicus brief opposing the federal administration's plans to ban ...


Gay News

PFLAG, HRC call out Trump/Pence hanging "joke" 2017-10-16 - PFLAG National ED Jaime Grant Calls Out Trump/Pence Hanging "Joke" WASHINGTON, D.C.—PFLAG National—the nation's largest and oldest organization uniting families and allies ...


Gay News

Justice Dept. steps in trans murder case 2017-10-16 - In an unusual move that Attorney General Jeff Sessions initiated, the Justice Department has dispatched an experienced federal hate-crimes lawyer to Iowa to ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.