The discriminatory policy came into effect yesterday (April 12).
As of yesterday, openly transgender troops will no longer be able to enlist in the US military, and if while serving they come out, they will be discharged.
The only exceptions to the ban are troops who were diagnosed with gender dysphoria before it came into force. The ban has effectively returned the military to the point of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ in which LGBTQ soldiers were forced to hide their identity.
Kara Corcoran, a trans captain in the US Army told The Guardian about her worries that the policy could have, sharing the experience of one of her fellow soldiers.
“He’s like ‘I’ll hold out and hopefully they will change the policy back,’ and it’s hurtful because I know that he will eventually get to a point where he can’t suppress it like I did for so many years,” she said.
Ashley Broadway-Mack, the president of the American Military Partner Association said: “With the implementation of this transgender military ban, our nation is once again shamefully forcing brave American heroes to hide who they are in order to serve.”
Former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton tweeted in protest of the implementation, writing: “The administration’s ban on transgender servicemembers begins today. It is abhorrent.
“Every American should be able to serve their country, and I can’t believe we’re still debating that in 2019. We have to reverse this as soon as we can.”
The administration's ban on transgender servicemembers begins today. It is abhorrent. Every American should be able to serve their country, and I can't believe we're still debating that in 2019. We have to reverse this as soon as we can.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) April 12, 2019
And Cher tweeted out that Trump had “NO CONVICTIONS” and that he “HAS VINDICTIVENESS 4 EFFECT.”
Transgender Military Ban Goes In2 Effect 2day. My💔Breaks 4 The More Than 6000 Trans Soldiers,Whose life’s Dream It Is,2 Serve🇺🇸& Protect Fellow Citizens.This Is Another Example Of trump Pandering 2 His Rightwing Base.trump”HAS NO CONVICTIONS”..HE HAS VINDICTIVENESS 4 EFFECT😡
— Cher (@cher) April 12, 2019
The ban came less than three months after the Supreme Court ruled by 5-4 in favour of allowing the policy to pass.
“There is simply no way to spin it, the Trump-Pence Administration is going all in on its discriminatory, unconstitutional and despicable ban on transgender troops,” said HRC president Chad Griffin after the ruling.
Senior staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union LGBT & HIV Project, Joshua Block, slammed the policy and said it “effectively coerces transgender people who wish to serve into choosing between their humanity and their country, and makes it clear that transgender service members are not welcome.”
The President of the United States first took to Twitter in 2017 to announce that anyone who identifies as trans will no longer be allowed to serve their country, citing “tremendous medical costs” and “disruption” by trans individuals.
Trump has claimed that the policy has support, but many, including those in the military have spoken out against it. In January, retired US general Stanley McChrystal said: “If we have people who want to serve, if they have the desire and capacity to serve, I think it’s a mistake to lose that talent.
“I also think it’s a mistake to send any message that says somebody with those attributes, the willingness and the capability to serve, not being welcome, is a negative message to send.”
McChrystal’s comments are similar to those of a top US general, Marine Corps General Joseph F. Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who told a congressional committee that transgender troops should be allowed to serve.
“I believe any individual who meets the physical and mental standards, and is worldwide deployable and is currently serving, should be afforded the opportunity to continue to serve,” he said.