Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Trump bans transgenders from military

Jul 27 2017 : The Times of India (Chennai)
Trump bans transgenders from military

Move Reverses Community's Hard-Won Rights During Obama Administration
US President Donald Trump announced a ban on transgenders serving in the military on Wednesday , opening up another political firefight while, for the most part, pleasing his conservative, Middle American base.“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the US Military,“ Trump wrote on Twitter in a surprise announcement.

“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.“
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The move reversed the transgenders' hard-won rights during the Obama administration to serve in the military , among the several Obama-era liberal and progressive advances that Trump has rolled back. By some acco unts there are more than 15,000 transgender personnel in the US military . There is now growing apprehension that the issue of sexual orientation may take centerstage as conservatives seek to push back liberal gains of the last several years.
Coming on top of several contentious issues -notably healthcare -already roiling the country , the strike against transgenders surprised both Donald Trump critics and supporters because he had presented himself during the presidential campaign as a friend of the LGBT community and a moderate on the issue.
To applause from the moderate wing of the party at the Republican convention, he promised to protect LGBTQ community “from the violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology“ in the after math of the Orlando nightclub shooting, adding, “As a Republican, I'm so happy to hear you cheering for what I just said.“
Turns out that was either posturing or the ultraconservative wing of the party prevailed on him. As it is, conservative media outlets such as Drudge Report and Breitbart News are starting to turn critical because they are disappointed with the president not pressing forward with their conservative agenda.
Even India, with all the social stigma attached to transgenders (called hijras), has made modest advances, including a transgender rights bill that calls for legal and civil rights despite the concurrent criminalisation of homosexuality .
Expectedly , the White House strike against transgenders outraged Democrats and liberals. “Every patriotic American who is qualified to serve in our military should be able to serve. Full stop,“ raged former vice-president Joe Biden even as legal challenges were being discussed in some quarters. Some Republican lawmakers were al so taken aback. “No American, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity, should be prohibited from honour + privilege of serving our nation #LGBT,“ tweeted Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Florida Republican who has a transgender son.
Also opposed to the Trump strike against transgenders -Senate Armed Services committee chairman John McCain, who came to the Hill from the hospital bed yesterday to give the president a fighting chance to repeal Obamacare. McCain's daughter Megan McCain is a gay rights activist who supports same-sex marriage, gay adoption, and gays and lesbians serving in the military.
Trump opened up the new front even as he continued to harangue his own cabinet colleague, administration appointees and GOP lawmakers. For the third day running, he hounded his attorney general Jeff Sessions, while admonishing another Republican Senator, Alaska's Lisa Murkowski, for not supporting him on the Obamacare repeal effort.

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