It's been over two years since President Donald Trump announced intentions to implement a ban on transgender troops serving in the United States military in a reversal of a new policy announced in 2016 by former President Barack Obama.
The ban forbids any person who has transitioned from the sex they were assigned at birth from enlisting in the military, however the Department of Defense claims that transgender people may serve openly, but only if they present as their birth sex.
One defense department official told Buzzfeed News:
“This new policy does not allow discrimination based on gender identity. You can reveal your preference and reveal you are transgender, but you have to serve under standards of your biological sex.”
On a conference call with reporters, one official stated that:
"Under the new policy, if they transitioned prior, they would not be eligible for accession into the military. I really don’t get any logic to how this gets you to this is a ban on transgender service.”
Kind of sounds like a ban.
While gender presentation varies widely among transgender people, the policy essentially forces these soldiers to live and present as cisgender while serving.
As the National Center for Transgender Equality pointed out:
"The instructions state that any of the thousands of current transgender service members who come out, or is found out, after April 12 and is not willing to renounce and suppress their identity will be subject to discharge."
Many agreed: a ban by any other name is still a ban.
Anyone who is qualified and willing should be allowed to serve their country openly. Make no mistake, this is a di… https://t.co/sqL7X5IcoN— Rep. Adam Smith (@Rep. Adam Smith)1552485195.0
@ZoeTillman @dominicholden Brought to you by the people who said the Muslim ban was not a ban.— Lifendz 🇺🇸🗽 (@Lifendz 🇺🇸🗽)1552506528.0
@ZoeTillman @dominicholden This is a joke, You can claim you’re transgender as long as you don’t look, act, or ref… https://t.co/8UgUDA3yKm— dane southard (@dane southard)1552506838.0
@scottbix @AdamSerwer @dominicholden Ah, I see the liars are not lying again.— AssiduousTheCruel (@AssiduousTheCruel)1552508835.0
Ban (verb): to prohibit especially by legal means https://t.co/0NLdO2k9dZ #TransMilitaryBan— Lesbians Who Tech & Allies (@Lesbians Who Tech & Allies)1552508328.0
The ban is part of a disturbing pattern from the Trump administration.
The President has routinely attempted to put the rights of trans people on the chopping block.
The administration has previously moved to strike down regulations protecting transgender people from discrimination in healthcare.
The administration attempted to define gender as one's assigned birth sex, effectively dismissing trans identities across America.
The administration banned the word "transgender" from use in Center for Disease Control documents.
Trump's animosity toward trans people hasn't been lost on anyone.
Advisor: Everyone hates you. How can we make them hate you more? Trump: Banning Transgender people from the military. A: God you're good.— The Raybould Brothers (@The Raybould Brothers)1503535454.0
"Trump for transgenders"? What a joke. Trump hates transgender people and Most Americans. Trump for jail. Lock that… https://t.co/vSKCp01mSW— Larry Cooper (@Larry Cooper)1548175935.0
@scotusreporter @erinscafe The Trump admin really, really hates transgender people.— The Road Hoarier (@The Road Hoarier)1543002407.0
As much as this administration may try to erase the recognition of transgender people, they won't be going anywhere.