Trump bars transgender individuals from US armed forces

Stock images, St. George News

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA (AP) — President Donald Trump is barring transgender people from serving in the military “in any capacity,” he announced Wednesday, citing “tremendous medical costs and disruption.”

Trump’s announcement on Twitter did not say what would happen to transgender people already in the military.

The president tweeted that after consulting with “Generals and military experts,” the government “will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”

Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail,” he added.

At the Pentagon, members of the staff of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis appeared to have been caught unaware by Trump’s tweets.

A Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, declined to answer questions about what Trump’s tweets mean for the current policy, including whether transgender people already serving in the military will be kicked out.

“Call the White House,” he said.

Davis later released a statement, saying:

We refer all questions about the president’s statements to the White House. We will continue to work closely with the White House to address the new guidance provided by the commander in chief on transgender individuals serving the military. We will provide revised guidance to the department in the near future.

The White House press office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Already, there are as many as 250 service members in the process of transitioning to their preferred genders or who have been approved to formally change gender within the Pentagon’s personnel system, according to several defense officials.

The Pentagon has refused to release any data on the number of transgender troops currently serving. A Rand Corp. study estimated that there are between 2,500 and 7,000 transgender service members on active duty and an additional 1,500 to 4,000 in the reserves.

Trump’s decision drew swift reaction from critics.

House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, called the move “a cruel and arbitrary decision designed to humiliate transgender Americans who stepped forward to serve our country.”

Matt Thorn, executive director of OutServe-SLDN, which represents the LGBT population in the military, said thousands have been serving in the U.S. armed forces without causing any issues.

It’s an absolute absurdity and another overstep,” Thorn said. He threatened legal action if Wednesday’s decision is not reversed.

Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan, director of the Trans/Gender Non-Conforming Justice Project, National LGBTQ Task Force, said Trump “has stood against the trans community with this decision and is harming lives for the sake of political gains.”

“The military is often the last resort for people who can’t find jobs because of discrimination,” Rodriguez-Roldan said. She said the transgender community “will not stop fighting” for justice.

Some conservative organizations and lawmakers hailed the decision.

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins applauded Trump for “keeping his promise to return to military priorities — and not continue the social experimentation of the Obama era that has crippled our nation’s military.”

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, said Trumps supporters “will be happy to hear it. We don’t need to be experimenting with the military. Plus there’s no reason to take on that kind of financial burden.”

Transgender service members have been able to serve openly in the military since last year, when former Defense Secretary Ash Carter ended the ban. Since Oct. 1, transgender troops have been able to receive medical care and start formally changing their gender identifications in the Pentagon’s personnel system.

Carter also gave the services until July 1 to develop policies to allow people already identifying as transgender to newly join the military. Mattis announced earlier this month that he was giving military chiefs another six months to conduct a review to determine if allowing transgender individuals to enlist in the armed services would affect the “readiness or lethality” of the force.

Key concerns include whether currently enlisted troops have had medical or other issues that cause delays or problems with their ability to deploy or meet physical or other standards for their jobs. Military leaders also wanted to review how transgender troops are treated, if they’re discriminated against or if they have had disciplinary problems, defense officials have said.

They were not authorized to discuss internal deliberations publicly so spoke on condition of anonymity.

Written by CATHERINE LUCEY and ROBERT BURNS, Associated Press. AP staff writers Darlene Superville and Vivian Salama contributed to this report.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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  • ladybugavenger July 26, 2017 at 10:49 am

    We don’t need that kind of confusion in the military. The transgenders don’t even know that boys have penises and girls have vaginas. Bless their hearts. It’s probably not all their fault either. Alot of children are confused, it all depends on what you feed the child’s mind. If your ok with your 3yr old son painting his nails well then you probably are feeding his mind that it’s ok to be like girls. And he may end up feeling uncomfortable being a boy. Bless his heart.

    You can be what you want. But I don’t have to conform it. I agree, transgenders should not be in military they are confused. They don’t even know they were born in the right body. Not everyone is accepted in the military just because they want to serve.

    • comments July 26, 2017 at 11:20 am

      Exactly, transexxuals are very confused and mentally ill people. The far left claims that genders are constructs, which means there’s no such thing as transgenders, and I actually agree, it is a construct. It’s as simple as having 2 sexes: girls and boys. The far left has lost their minds and nearly completely cowed to a zionist agenda of perversion and degeneracy, and the so called “conservatives” in gov’t have failed to keep them in check.

      • Travis July 26, 2017 at 12:08 pm

        “mentally ill people”, “perversion”, “degeneracy”, “keep them in check”. And the far RIGHT believes in “God” and the bible. Guess what, the “far left” still have votes in this country.

        • CADET321 July 26, 2017 at 1:00 pm

          And they are still losing 🙂

        • comments July 26, 2017 at 3:41 pm

          and the far left have turned into loons. What happened to common sense within the d-party? I have no idea.

        • desertgirl July 26, 2017 at 6:03 pm

          More importantly, the military is not a hospital for elective surgery. The swamp creatures cannot provide proper and necessary (in other words, progressive loon, life threatening physical) medical care for the enlisted and veterans who put their life on the line and pay these totalitarian wanna be dictators and their sheep; the tax payer should not be paying for gender reassignment. Get it done while a civilian and then apply. You, Travis, are the result of decades of Marxist/Socialist propaganda, brain-washing, and manipulation of the public with the small or unimportant issues. Fools and sheep then don’t give their attention and are taught not to care about what matters most. And it isn’t transgenders, bathrooms for less than a half of a percent of the population, putting people out of work to save a fish or a spec of land. Get over yourselves and learn out to think without the totalitarian masters dish masters. Until then you are part of the problems in life not the solution.

  • Travis July 26, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    Even my father, the Army colonel, was sympathetic/empathetic when he saw Broke Back Mountain. I was even shocked he went to see it. So was my mother.

    They are not “confused”, ladybug avenger.

    My brother’s marriage ended recently after almost 18 years. After the separation, she began a relationship with a woman. She is now living with her and my niece and 2 nephews. Would I have liked things to go differently for my brother and his wife – certainly. But this is the reality now. All along we all thought that his alcoholism was the true reason the marriage ended, but this certainly brings up the thought that it was his wife that had issues in the marriage as well. Nevertheless, my brother was devastated. He truly loved this woman.

    I had a very close friend in high school who struggled but never told anyone what she was going through. She told NO ONE !!!! She married, had 2 children and then she came out to her husband and gave up custody of her children to her husband. Her struggles finally made sense, but it was so much later than it needed to be.

    I have another friend from high school who was gay and he was berated EVERY day in a gauntlet of JOCKS in the hallway at school during lunch period.

    It’s really quite FASCINATING to me now that I was so naive to what being “gay” was. It never even mattered. So many people I knew in HS have come out since HS since it was not as acceptable in the early 70s. I knew them as friends, not gay.

    Do you think that “gay” can be cured? Are you LDS? Do you promote “Intelligent Design” (as in a creator) rather than evolution? Do you believe in science? Do you believe that genes determine so many factors in our bodies? I bet there is at least 1 person in your life who is gay and you don’t know it. I’ll even bet there is more than one friend / acquaintance in your life who is gay. Why do you think the Utah suicide rate among teenagers is so high. Do you actually think someone would “CHOOSE A LIFESTYLE” that brings so much hate upon them? Do you actually think a child can be NURTURED into being gay? Do you actually think a person would go to the extreme of a sex change operation because they are “confused”?

    • ladybugavenger July 26, 2017 at 12:33 pm

      I am of no religion. People call me Christian but what does that mean? I know a lot Christian snakes. So I choose to not be a member of a religion. Religion can’t save you or me. I love God. I love Jesus. What else do you want from me? to accept it’s ok? Not happening. But no individual should be hated or treated badly without cause. I see gay people, I see transgenders, my family has gays….I don’t walk up to them and hate on them or say anything negative to them. As long as they don’t hate on me and don’t steal from me- (as with anyone else) we’re cool! ?

      What do you want from me? To change to your ways? If I did that I wouldn’t be ladybugavenger.

    • ladybugavenger July 26, 2017 at 1:11 pm

      Do you actually think a person would go to the extreme of a sex change operation because they are “confused?” I believe I already answered that. Let me say it this way: Absolutely!

      I’ll add, they also don’t truly believe in the one true living God. Coincidence? Nope!

      I’ll say again, No need to hate anyone. No need to hate anyone for not agreeing with you.

      My husband and I disagree about just about everything, our disagreements could go on forever if we let it. Do we both want to be right? Sure we do. But, when it gets to a point of 3 times saying the same thing, we agree to disagree. When it goes further than 3 times and it gets a little hot one of us changes the subject, and then we laugh. Our love is greater than the need to be right. But when the other one says, you were right, – we want to pull out the recorder lol….so Travis we can go back and forth for a lifetime, but why? We can disagree and still get along. Isn’t your love for ladybug greater than our differences? You can’t change me and make me believe that being gay is any different than being a drug addict- they both involve lust. And they are both a matter of the heart. So you believe what you want, and I’ll believe the truth. God said it, I believe it, that settles it.

      If you want to pay to transform the military into a transgender friendly environment and punish those that harm them for being transgender, than by all means get your people together and make it happen. Me? I believe my tax dollars should go to building a wall.

      • comments July 26, 2017 at 4:23 pm

        Right, what in the world brought up the gays. This has nothing to do with the gays. Transsexuals are severely mentally ill more often than not. I’d tell old travis up there to have a look at suicide rates involving post-op transsexuals. The normalizing of such things is nothing less than a world gone mad. And, once again, there’s really no such thing as a “transgender”. Call a spade a spade, these are transsexuals we’re dealing with, not “transgenders”. The agenda of normalizing transsexualism among very young children is absolutely insane. That actually upsets me quite a lot.

        • ladybugavenger July 27, 2017 at 8:51 am

          Ok Bob- transsexuals . Whatever it is, it’s quite disturbing. They are so tormented. Bless their hearts.

    • Real Life July 26, 2017 at 2:42 pm

      Big difference between gay and transgendered.

    • RightSaidFred July 26, 2017 at 3:35 pm

      Travis, what does being gay have to do with this story? It is about transgenders serving in the military and having the Govt foot the bill for their surgery. As a vet, I totally agree with Trump and am glad he has done this. Transgenders don’t belong in the military. The left continues to try and tear us down and weaken our country with their idiocy. Thankfully Barry is out of the Whitehouse now and we can get back to some type of normalcy.

    • desertgirl July 26, 2017 at 6:05 pm

      Your charming personal stories have nothing to with the subject at hand. Use your head for a change and not your heart and genitals to make common sense, responsible decisions. ( We all have stories.)

  • dogmatic July 26, 2017 at 12:41 pm

    The article is about transgender not gays. big difference.
    But while me are on the subject, maybe the alcohol problem started after 18 years of living with a frigid wife, poor guy, can you imagine!!

  • Kyle L. July 26, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    I STAND WITH TRUMP!!!!! My boy is in the military and I completely back and support President Trump’s decision. This is a decision that follows Biblical principals and Godly values, both of which this country was founded on.

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