IS BEING TRANS A DISTRACTION TO THE MILITARY?
POSTED AUGUST 18TH, 2017 | BY MICHAELA GREEN
Donald Trump is known for his dramatic declarations that usually never follow with any action. On July 26th, this might’ve changed. Trump as usual, took to twitter to make a huge announcement that would affect a large proportion of our country: *in my best Donald voice" 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 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."
I personally feel that all human beings that are stand up citizens, should be granted the same human rights of the population. Everyone is different inside and out and they should not be punished or called out because of it. I on the other hand also don’t know anything about the US Armed Forces, so I took to some research. I reached out to a good friend who is trans, an Army Sergeant, and a retired Air Force Captain.
Let us take a look at year 2014 – according to The RAND Corporation, The Department of Defense’s health care expenditures totaled $49.3 billion vs. the $2.4-$8.4 million (.004-.017%) it took to cover transgender related services. So, my biggest question is whether or not it is accurate to say that transgender individuals serving in the military are causing large medical cost (please reference the .017% mentioned above), causing disruption, and distraction from a decisive and overwhelming victory.
When talking with Demariae Dennis, A Sergeant in his 6th year of service, he could not say whether or not transgender individuals were really actually causing large medical coast. “It’s difficult to say whether or not transgender folks are causing large medical cost. I would need to see the budget in its entirety. A lot of trans people do join the military so they can have a transitional surgery. They don’t have longevity, Just in and out”, Sergeant Dennis says.
Me: How many transgender people do you know that have joined JUST to have a transitional surgery?
Sergeant Dennis: I had to take a training class and the trainer told us that a lot of trans people join the military to have the surgery done.
Me: oh, ok. but in my head I am really thinking, “what are they really teaching our military men and women who serve, what are the percentages of this accusation? It seems like the presenter was extremely opinionated.
David Smith enlisted as a First Lieutenant and retired as a Captain after serving 9.5 years. “The money won’t affect anything, the military spends more than that on other useless shit”, says Captain Smith. Captain Smith admitted to agreeing with transgendered individuals causing a disruption within the military. “In a way I feel trans are disruptive within the military because every time we change these rules surrounding being openly gay or trans, we have to go through these “feelings trainings” and it gets really played out, we’re having to accommodate the needs of the few”, says Captain Smith.
“Trump and the world have not surprised me in anyway”, says Parker Alch. Parker himself trans and his wife Bobbi who is also trans, will reach their one year marital anniversary, September 17th. “I am never far from knowing the real danger trans people are in at all times. Trans women of color are the most marginalized and will always be the victims of society if we don't take a look at how we can give them equality and ability to survive and thrive”, says Alch.”
I don’t see how this will have a positive effect on the military as a whole. If anything, historical moments like these prevent a very old organization from being innovative, efficiently adapting to social change, and prevent the development of compassion toward those who are different. You give a bunch of old privileged white men their mic back and they can’t wait to force the entire nation to revert back to the 1800’s.
The latest update regarding Trump's announcement was given in a memo last week from Joint Chief Chairman Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford who says thousands of transgender troops in the ranks will continue serving indefinitely until the Pentagon gets formal notice of Donald Trump's proposed ban and figures out a way to implement it. According to CNN, five active duty transgender service members are already filing the first lawsuit regarding the matter. Stay tuned for more updates!
Michaela Green is a CSUITEMUSIC Blogger