Trump defends transgender military ban: ‘I’m doing a lot of people a favor’
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 14, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Keeping transgenders out of combat may be politically incorrect, but President Trump believes it’s so common sense that he’s “doing a lot of people a favor” by “coming out and saying it.”
As with other unpopular conservative moves such as pulling out of the Paris Climate Accord, Trump is not not backing down to critics but “doubling down“ on his stand.
“I have great respect for the (LGBTQ) community. I think I’m a great supporter (and) I’ve had great support from that community,” the president said in response to questions from the press at his golf club in New Jersey. “The military is working on (the ban) now ... It’s been a very difficult situation, and I think I’m doing a lot of people a favor by just coming out and saying it.”
“As you know, it’s been a very complicated issue for the military. It’s been a very confusing issue for the military,” Trump reiterated, “and I think I’m doing the military a great favor.”
The president announced the transgender soldier ban on July 26 in a series of tweets.
“The United States government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. military,” Trump stated, explaining further, “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.”
The president’s tweets received a bevy of social media reactions, both in favor and against the ban.
Homosexual activists like Bruce Jenner publicly criticized Trump’s ban. Human Rights Campaign president Chad Griffin called it “delusional.”
Five military men who dress as women and use women’s names sued to stop Trump’s transgender ban, saying it violates their constitutional rights. But the U.S. Constitution does not specify that transgenders have an inviolable right to serve as soldiers.
Some liberals are even blaming Trump’s ban for LGBTQ self-harm. Australia’s Special Broadcasting Service reported a “huge spike” in crisis calls to homosexual help hotlines. Trevor Project’s Amit Paley concluded, “Anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and legislation directly leads to crisis among our community’s young people.”
Many high ranking military leaders, however, strongly support Trump’s ban of transgenders from the military.
A letter from 16 retired officers thanked President Trump for his “bold” and “extremely courageous decision” to reverse President Obama’s transgender recruitment.
“There may be an enormous amount of vitriol directed at you for making this policy correction, but please know that overturning this policy may have done more in the long term to save the culture and war-fighting capacity of the U.S. military than perhaps any other military policy you will adopt as president,” the high-ranking officers’ July 27 letter stated.
The letter praising Trump and his transgender ban was signed by seven major generals, three lieutenant generals, three brigadier generals, an admiral, a vice admiral, a Marine Corps veteran, and other soldiers.
“Aside from the time lost due to the non-deployability of the person transitioning, one must also consider the time taken away from commanding officers for transgender case management,” the generals and other officers point out. “Needless to say, that is time not being spent training or thinking about how to engage and defeat our enemies in combat. The shifting of Commanding Officer time would have been a real detriment to military effectiveness.”
“Department of Defense guidelines require that those serving in the military be ‘medically adaptable to the military environment without the necessity of geographic area limitations,’” the letter added. “However, both hormone therapy and gender reassignment surgery result in the need for specialized medical care which will not be available in all geographic locations.”
The new ban is in stark contrast to the Obama administration, whose Justice Department not only refused to uphold the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell federal law but issued a series of edicts facilitating the infusion of open homosexuals and transgenders into military and civilian society and the universal promotion of their lifestyles as normal and good.
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was notified a full day before Trump tweeted his decision.
Last week, the administration issued “A Guidance Policy for Open Transgender Service Phase Out,” which has not been made public yet.
The New York Times cites an unnamed administration official saying Trump is considering encouraging transgender soldiers to retire early. But an anonymous “defense official” told the Times that such a move would be challenged in the courts.