Trump Attempts to Revive Transgender Military Ban

Trump Attempts to Revive Transgender Military Ban

"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", Trump's new memorandum said.

US President Donald Trump has banned the recruitment of transgender people for all wings of the US military.

The White House said transgender individuals with a history of gender dysphoria, defined as "those who may require substantial medical treatment, including through medical drugs or surgery", would be disqualified from military service "except under certain limited circumstances".

Trump's initial memo had to be modified after federal courts ruled against the ban in four separate cases, saying it violated the right to equal protection under the US Constitution.

The move is an extension of the policy announced impulsively by President Trump on Twitter last July, in which he vowed to ban all transgender people from the military.

Mattis' assertion contradicts a 2016 study by the RAND Corp., which found that allowing transgender people to serve in the military would "have minimal impact on readiness and health care costs" for the Pentagon.

"In my professional judgment, these policies will place the Department of Defense in the strongest position to protect the American people, to fight and win America's wars, and to ensure the survival and success of our service members around the world", Mattis wrote about his recommendations.

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Aaron Belkin, the director of the Palm Center, a California-based institute that researches the military service of sexual minorities, said there was "no evidence to support a policy that bars from military service patriotic Americans who are medically fit and able to deploy".

Trump's original ban was blocked by federal judges, and the new one is more focused on service members who have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria. "It is reverse-engineered for the sole objective of carrying out President Trump's reckless and unconstitutional ban, undermining the ability of transgender service members to serve openly and military readiness as a whole".

The Democratic National Committee also weighed in late Friday, calling the decision "an insult to our fearless transgender service members and all who wear our nation's uniform", adding that "discrimination is not a national security strategy". He accused the Obama administration of allowing transgender military service without identifying a "sufficient basis" that doing so would not "hinder military effectiveness and lethality, disrupt unit cohesion, or tax military resources", and he directed Mattis to have the Pentagon adopt a new ban similar to the military's former policy by Friday.

Following Friday's policy announcement, opponents of the transgender ban and lawmakers promptly condemned the White House's decision. There are over 1,300,000 active duty personnel of the United States military, according to July 2017 data from the Department of Defense. Almost two-thirds (64%) of the public favor allowing transgender people to serve, while 30% oppose.

Eastburn could not say how many transgender service members are in the military, because the Pentagon classifies troops as men or women.

But in a subsequent statement, the White House press office on Friday explained that the policy was "developed through extensive study by senior uniformed and civilian leaders, including combat veterans".

The government wanted to keep the veto in force while it appealed the ruling, but in December the judge ratified it and the Pentagon is, in fact, complying with the law of the judicial resolution. That they would continue to evaluate and retain transgender personnel.

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