President Donald Trump’s policy on transgender people serving in the military, which critics compare to “don’t ask, don’t tell,” takes effect on Friday, NBC News reports.
The Pentagon on Friday implemented a new policy that prevents anyone with transgender dysphoria who is currently receiving hormone treatments or who has already transitioned may not enlist. Any troops currently serving who are diagnosed with gender dysphoria after this date may not take hormones or have gender reassignment surgery, and must serve as the sex on their birth certificate.
“The policy is insidious in operation but designed to be as comprehensive a ban as possible,” reads a report from the Palm Center, a nonpartisan group that studies LGBTQ military issues. “In that sense, it is a perfect parallel to the failed ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy, also sold as not being a ban although designed to systemically push gay people out of military service — or at least keep them silent and invisible.”
“There’s transgender people who have been scrambling to try to hurry up, come out and begin the transition process so that they can be included in this so-called grandfathered group,” Shannon Minter, Legal Director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights and one of the lead attorneys in two lawsuits filed in response to the policy, told ABC News. “So that has been a source of enormous stress and anxiety.”
When asked last October about his campaign promise to protect transgender people and his proposed ban on transgender people from serving in the military, Trump said he is “protecting everybody.”
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