In Clever Move, President Trump Rescinds Military Transgender Ban

Though it isn’t being reported this way, last Friday President Trump actually rescinded the ban he previously implemented on transgenders in the military last August.  The new memorandum (PDF) explicitly withdrew his prior policy:

I hereby revoke my memorandum of August 25, 2017, “Military Service by Transgender Individuals,” and any other directive I may have made with respect to military service by transgender individuals.

The new memo did not institute a new presidential directive.  Rather, the President deferred to the Department of Defense — that is, the “independent judgment” of the DoD — with regard to its policies.  He said [emphasis added]:

These [DoD-produced] documents set forth the policies on this issue that the Secretary of Defense, in the exercise of his independent judgment, has concluded should be adopted by the Department of Defense.

It’s a clever move.  Lawsuits and media attacks up to this point have focused on the President.  Here, the President essentially — in fact, explicitly — says Secretary James Mattis of the DoD has made these policies, not him.  This severely undercuts those who have made this issue about President Trump — and especially those who have tried to portray this as Trump overruling the DoD.  President Trump isn’t going against the military; he’s letting them make the decision.

The new DoD policies (PDF) contain updated guidance on military service by individuals who are confused about their biological gender [emphasis added]:

“Among other things, the policies set forth by the Secretary of Defense state that transgender persons with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria — individuals who the policies state may require substantial medical treatment, including medications and surgery — are disqualified from military service except under certain limited circumstances,” a memo released by the White House on Friday night said.

Some of the same groups who complained Trump was ignoring DoD conclusions (when it favored their agenda) are now ignoring the latest statements by the same DoD [emphasis added]:

“Based on the work of the Panel and the Department’s best military judgment, the Department of Defense concludes that there are substantial risks associated with allowing the accession and retention of individuals with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria and require, or have already undertaken, a course of treatment to change their gender.

“Furthermore, the Department also finds that exempting such persons from well-established mental health, physical health, and sex-based standards, which apply to all Service members, including transgender Service members without gender dysphoria, could undermine readiness, disrupt unit cohesion, and impose an unreasonable burden on the military that is not conducive to military effectiveness and lethality.”

Naturally, LGBT activist groups decried the policy, but they didn’t always think through what they were saying. For example, the AMPA — led by Ashley Broadway, the famous “devout Christian” — attacked President Trump (and Vice President Pence) and applauded the American Psychiatric Association’s statement, highlighting this quote:

“All Americans who meet the strenuous requirements and volunteer to serve in U.S. military should be given the opportunity to do so.”

That’s great, Ashley. Do you understand that not having gender dysphoria is one of those “strenuous requirements”? Seems like you actually support the DoD policy.

Federal courts put a hold on the implementation of President Trump’s prior policy, but the Justice Department has already indicated an intent to proceed — in fact, the memo was filed with the intent of ending the current legal cases. Historically, it seems unlikely LGBT advocates would prevail at the Supreme Court anyway, given the judiciary’s deference to the military on matters affecting national defense.

First, as previously noted, this is now being presented as a DoD issue, not a President Trump issue.

Second, in the early 1980s the Supreme Court said the military could restrict a service member’s free exercise of religion — even though that’s an explicitly enumerated right in the US Constitution.

By contrast, there is no right to serve in the US military. There is no right to have the government support your personal perception or feelings about your sexuality.

There are actual, physical issues regarding these neo-sexual “rights” in the military, which even now society is struggling to handle. Similarly, there is again a nexus with religion. What of the US troop who believes he would be participating in sin to shower with someone who was biologically the other gender, but asserted a different gender? What of the troop who believed it morally wrong to support a “perversion” of God’s creation in calling a “male” a “female,” or vice versa?

It’s not a non-event.

If the Supreme Court wouldn’t “protect” an actual right, why do sexual activists think SCOTUS would protect a manufactured one?

Then again, you never know.

For those that still don’t get it, a military father articulately explained it this way:

I have a Deaf son and daughter. They cannot serve in the military. Do I personally wish they could? Of course, I love the Army and what it has done in my life, I would love for them to have every opportunity I have had because I’m their dad.

But I’m also a leader. I’m also responsible for ensuring our lethality. I’m aware that just because my amazing Deaf children would be capable of serving doesn’t mean that’s what’s right for the Army as an organization.

The military isn’t about individual expression, it’s about service to our nation and not about our nation serving us.

This is 100% the right move by Chaos 6. There are plenty of other opportunities available to serve our Nation available to my children if they do choose. Range control to health care to DOIM. The list is almost endless of jobs they can do, with shoot move and communicate as a team not being there.

I’m okay with that. I get it. I get that our national security is worth that conversation I will have to have with them about why Daddy could serve in uniform and they can’t.

So to all the transfolk our there I say, it’s not about you. It’s not about your “rights” as a trans person because no one has a right to serve. It is a privilege of the few. Feel a little raw about it? Plenty of jobs at range control, health care, DOIM, etc.

We don’t all get a choice to void our ability to serve. My children were born unqualified to serve. You chose to make yourself that way. Get in line, because it ain’t all about you.

It’s not about you.

Also at the Religion Clause, Stars and Stripes, Politico, and CBN News.

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14 comments

  • A deaf person would possibly be a problem on the battlefield because they could not hear an order leading to them not fulfilling the military objective.

    A transgender person would possibly be a problem on the battlefield because…..

    • @Donalbain
      To use the in vogue term, your assertion about the hearing impaired is ableist. You need to check your privilege. The hearing impaired could be accommodated, and their patriotism, sacrifice, and selfless desire to serve could be honored.

      By contrast, you’re presumably more than willing to accommodate the medical, logistical, and moral(e) issues with transgenders that the US Department of Defense has determined could “undermine readiness, disrupt unit cohesion, and impose an unreasonable burden on the military that is not conducive to military effectiveness and lethality.”

    • Freedom Fighter

      Very well, I’ll bite.

      DOD need not cite historical examples of “problems on the battlefield.” If, in a commander’s plenary discretion, he determines that a person with a particular mental health diagnosis would undermine good order and discipline, unit cohesion, esprit de corps, etc., that is sufficient.

      Bed-wetters and people with flat feet may be disqualified from service. Please show me the evidence that patriots with those conditions have resulted in problems on the battlefield. I’ll wait.

    • OppressedMajority

      /sigh

      Let me break this down for you. There are standards in the military. Some standards apply to all, while others apply to TWO different groups: males and females.

      There are TWO separate physical fitness standards: one for males and another for females. Why is this? Because at some point in time, the military identified that MEN are stronger than WOMEN. Its not discrimination, its biology.

      I served 5 years in the Navy. On a ship, men slept in male “berthings” and females in female “berthings”. Why is this? Well for starters there is a stark difference between men and women ie: women have periods due to menstruation. Females typically enjoy the right to privacy from MEN while dealing with female issues. Also, there is the issue of pregnancy while deployed. We see it all the time. Men and women attract and violate rules and regulations, so they are SEGREGATED to avoid potential problems that detract from GOOD ORDER AND DISCIPLINE. You could argue that gays/lesbians are attracted to same-same, so my point is invalid and my counter to that is that we had several incidents of homozexual relationships that violated good order and discipline, and those were often never dealt with as harsh as heterozexual relationships that violated good order and discipline, due to fear of EO reprisal. FACTS!

      Now in 2018, we are discussing individuals wanting to “hop the fence” and play for the other team.

      Take this hypothetical scenario:
      Imagine Joe, who joined the military and has served honorably for 2 years. He always felt a little different inside, but “he” concealed his true feelings during enlistment so “he” could serve. Now, in 2018, “he” learns that his gender dysphoria is welcomed and embraced. So “he” decides to undergo the “transition” (body mutilation). Up until this point, his peers often wondered, but never really cared about his orientation or feelings about being male. They just did their job, and so did he without any issue.

      His first sergeant/commander go through the proper channels and allow “him” to begin this process. After about 1-1.5 years of surgery, hormone therapy, etc. Joe is now declared Jane and a “female”. During this time, several people had to take deployment assignments since Joe was unable to deploy on his previous rotation. A hetero father of 3 instead took Joes spot, so Joe could shed some pounds down below. Don’t worry America, the non-dysphoric troops will cover the gaps.

      Oh but wait, it gets better! Current DoD policy allowed Joe to sleep in the female quarters/berthing/whatever your branch calls it DURING THE TRANSITION PERIOD. His/her/whatever female counterparts who used to call “him” Joe now have to sleep within yards of “Joe” while “he/she” undergoes extensive surgery. These females are now forced to shower/sleep/deal with WOMAN-issues while a MAN is among them, going through a transition. Do you not see how this…

      …DETRACTS FROM GOOD ORDER AND DISCIPLINE?

      Oh and to top it off, Joe–> Jane can now conduct his/her PT test under the much, MUCH easier female PT standard. I know the Army and Marine Corps factor in PT scores for boards and what not. A man-to-woman competing among actual females is going to dominate the charts for score (I know you will find a one-female example who beats all the boys, but I can go find a strongman to shut your argument down). So now females are forced to compete, unfairly, against biological men and will score lower on boards/promotions due to that. I know the AF does not factor actual score for promotions, but rather a pass/fail system.

      The point is, there exists 2 standards. To suggest that men and women can hop the fence and conform to those standards without making THE VAST MAJORITY OF “NORMAL” PEOPLE serving in the military uncomfortable is ridiculous. Its not about being a bigot or hateful or discriminatory. And stop comparing transgenderism with race. Here is my INSTANT shut down of that logic: can a white man “transition” to be a black man? NO, so stop with that nonsense.

      All of this “equality” crap leads me to one solution. NO MORE DUAL STANDARDS FOR MALE OR FEMALE TROOPS. there will be ONE standard, the MALE standard. You “people” aka the “left” always talk about combat capability. OK FINE. One PT standard, one sleeping area, one bathroom, one set of showers period. who cares what you have in between your legs. Also, add pull-ups to the PT test. <–instant FAIL for many. Let's attract the STRONG to the military, no more weakness, since we are all concerned about combat capability. Guess what, 50% yes FIFTY PERCENT of the military would be immediately disqualified due to not being able to do 35 <–LOL pushups and run a mile and a half in THIRTEEN freaking minutes let alone just ONE full-hanging pullup. But anyone who meets the standard will be allowed in, screw it!

      Lets start with TRUE equality-one standard, fair to all. You either get up over the bar or you don't. FAIR, SIMPLE, EQUAL. Let the trannys in I say! just do 1 pullup

  • So. No actual examples or evidence. Just the same vague nonsense as was used to defend race and sexuality based segregation. Thought as much.

    • A transgender individual is mentally ill. His/her problem is called “gender dysphoria.” Look it up on Wikipedia where the illness is described with terms like “profound state of unease, depression, anxiety, risk of suicide, bipolar disorder, emotional distress,” etc. These are profound and serious problems.

      The absurd solution advocated by these people (and their sympathizers) is bodily mutilation to try and change physical reality to conform to their mental fantasy. This is to be done at taxpayer expense—using scarce resources that should be devoted solely to the defense of the nation in order to cater to the psychotic delusions of a handful of mental cripples who cannot come to terms with reality. Along with their “surgery” they rely on government provided expensive drugs to keep them functioning in some kind of semi-normal state. Those people who buy into this craziness as being OK in a military setting are almost as delusional as these pitiful objects of their overwrought sympathy. I don’t need a medical or psychiatric text to tell me of the stupidity of this proposed solution. It is just common sense.

      From a practical standpoint, I want my fellow soldiers to be in full control of their mental processes and to be able to distinguish between reality and fantasy. In dealing with life and death situations I don’t want someone next to me with a gun who thinks he is Santa Claus any more than I want a man next to me who thinks he is a girl, or some other weird thing that may suddenly pop into his head. I cannot be confident in the stability of such a person.

      If a person cannot look at him or herself and accept the reality of the way they were created, I feel genuine sorrow for them and their mental/spiritual problems. They genuinely need help, but the military is not the place for that. To claim that they can do the job merely because they have the physical capacity to pull a trigger is utterly sophomoric thinking. A heck of a lot more goes into being a good and effective soldier than just being a warm body with a gun. As a soldier I want someone next to me who is in full control of his mental processes, who can think and has a clear grasp of reality. I don’t want some mentally ill person who might suddenly confuse me with the enemy, do something else irrational, or who even commits suicide because he finally cracks in a stressful situation about his gender dysphoria depression. He might not have taken his “drugs” that morning and his fellow soldier is now the one who pays the price for being forced to put his life in the hands of a mentally ill person. That is political correctness run amuck. No thank you. I don’t want someone like that next to me in a combat situation!

    • Actually, his logic is sound and his examples concrete. I thought as much that a hate-mongering bigot such as yourself wouldn’t understand that.

      Go figure; you lot never could understand the concept of rights, privileges, regulations, and common sense.

  • You make them sound like wack-a-doodles Michael Martin…most are not. The American Psychiatric Association does NOT define “gender dysphoria” where the illness is described with terms like “profound state of unease, depression, anxiety, risk of suicide, bipolar disorder, emotional distress.” Wikipedia is NOT an official source for anything. These people “may be” very uncomfortable with the gender they were assigned, sometimes described as being uncomfortable with their body (particularly developments during puberty) or being uncomfortable with the expected roles of their assigned gender. BFD. If they can do the job regardless, let them. I do not agree that the Military should pay one penny for any “reconfiguration” of their bodies, let them pay.

    I know a few transgender types and they are more stable with their issue than some other people I know. It makes no sense to ban all of them if they are of good mind. In fact, one of the females I know can shoot a lot of guns better then some men and she wants to be a man. I’d fight next to she/he any day!

    • Freedom Fighter

      Ah yes, the classic argument-by-anecdote. “These so-called experts are idiots. I know someone who is an exception to the rule. Therefore, the rule must be changed.”

    • Do you have any military experience?

  • Michael Martin

    IDKYALL won’t answer my question. So much for his/her declaration, “I’d fight next to he/she any day!”

  • Michael Martin

    @ JD
    Ah, good thing I guess. Thanks for the info.

  • In my defense my second reply back to Michael Martin may have been too close to certain truths that would upset the apple cart, um “spam filter”. So here is another attempt, iso the so-called idiots, these medical professionals help hundreds of troops recover from many mental, emotional and behavioral disorders everyday. Yes, I’m a retired military person and I can tell you that given the recent news that a mere 20% of todays youth is qualified for Military service we need to evaluate each person on their individual merits/qualifications, not just their physical identity. Emotional stability is easily determined by the experts and there is no reason to deny a person for Military service if they can do the job; the gay people have already proven that.

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