In a series of tweets published over social media today, Donald Trump has denounced any support he previously claimed to have for the LGBT+ community, deciding it suitable to ban transgender service men and women from the U.S. military.
The President tweeted: “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender [sic] individuals to serve in the U.S. Military.”
“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdening with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you”.
The move revoked a previous historic move by former U.S. President Barrack Obama to lift the Pentagon’s ban on allowing transgender soldiers to openly serve in the military.
Former Defence Secretary Ash Carter called the lifting of the long-held ban under Obama’s administration as “the right thing to do for our people and for the force.”
“We’re talking about talented Americans who are serving with distinction or who want the opportunity to serve. We can’t allow barriers unrelated to a person’s qualifications prevent us from recruiting and retaining those who can best accomplish the mission.”
The declaration over social media has been labelled an abomination and complete neglect of care towards LGBT+ Americans.
The Human Rights Campaign condemned the news, declaring that Trump and Pence “should be working to ensure all service members and their families are getting the support and resources they need and deserve, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation.”
Since the inauguration of Donald Trump, LGBT+ communities across America have held their breath in fear of their rights being affected. Trump refused to acknowledge or recognise LGBT Pride month in June, his administration took 180 days to respond to gay men in Chechnya being detained, tortured and murdered and recently cut LGBT+ people from the US 2020 Census.
Earlier in the year, the Trump administration withdrew Obama-era guidelines issued by the departments of Education and Justice that let trans students use the facilities that correspond with their gender identity. Trump also signed an executive order nullifying an initiative that ensured federal contractors could not discriminate based on gender identity of sexual orientation.
Many feared a Trump presidency would be a step backwards for LGBT+ equality, particularly due to Vice President Mike Pence, who has been a vocal opponent to equal marriage. This is despite claims during his campaign that he would “fight” for the LGBT community. He promised to protect LGBT citizens from the “violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology” – but made little mention of US government legislation.
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