On Wednesday, President Donald Trump notified the people of the United States on Twitter that transgender people will no longer be able to serve openly in the United States military.


There are thousands of transgender people currently serving in the military that work to keep our country safe and free that have now been silenced.


President Obama’s Administration announced last year that transgender people could serve openly in the United States. This policy that President Donald Trump is putting forth is similar to President Clinton’s “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Policy” from 1993 in which gay and lesbian servicemembers were not allowed to serve in the military.


There is no place for discrimination in the military. Eliminating transgender people from the military and putting them back in the closet does not align with American values. ACLU announced in a statement today that they are examining all of their options to fight this.

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“An estimated 15,000 transgender people are already honorably serving in the United States military all around the globe. These comments against our honorable servicemembers are a blatant affront to American values,” said Steph Perkins, Executive Director of PROMO, Missouri's statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization.


“We have seen throughout history that an inclusive military is what makes an effective force, and that is still true today," added Perkins. "We hope leadership across the US military will continue to follow the current policy that allows those who serve to serve openly with honor and integrity.”


Brian C. Johnson, CEO of Equality Illinois, the state’s civil rights organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) Illinoisans, issued the following statement:


"By rejecting the brave military service of transgender Americans, President Trump's policy by tweets is an outrageous about face of the trend of creating a military where courageous Americans of all identities and backgrounds are encouraged to serve. Our military is strongest when it reflects the full diversity of our American community and when all Americans are welcomed to serve. President Trump’s latest tweets weaken our armed forces by flying in the face of this commitment to a strong and vibrant military."


"Trump cites no evidence or rationale in his tweets. Unfortunately, his pronouncement echoes similar excuses used to justify segregating African-Americans in the military, limiting the role of women, and forcing gay and lesbian service members to serve while hiding their sexual orientation, all policies that were eventually discredited and reversed. In fact, as Trump tweeted, it was the anniversary of the July 26, 1948 order by President Harry Truman ending official segregation in the military."

 

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