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 discriminatory ban on transgender people, not a ban on a medical condition and we will continue to fight against this bigoted policy.https://t.co/7ISTtvX9XD
— Rep. Adam Smith (@RepAdamSmith) March 13, 2019
Narrator: "It was a ban."
— 🅜🅞🅛🅐🅢🅢🅔🅢 🅑🅞🅨 (@MolassesBoy) March 13, 2019
Brought to you by the people who said the Muslim ban was not a ban.
— Lifendz (@Lifendz) March 13, 2019
This is a joke,
You can claim you’re transgender as long as you don’t look, act, or reflect transgender in any way.
— dane southard (@Ohdaneit) March 13, 2019
Ah, I see the liars are not lying again.
— AssiduousTheCruel (@TheIntegrator) March 13, 2019
— Lesbians Who Tech + Allies (@lesbiantech) March 13, 2019
The ban is part of a disturbing pattern from the Trump administration.