Trump to Reinstate US Military Ban on Transgender People

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WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he plans to reinstate a ban on transgender individuals from serving “in any capacity” in the US armed forces.

The decision reversed a policy initially approved by the Defense Department under President Barack Obama, which was still under final review, that would allow transgender individuals to openly serve in the military. Defense Secretary James Mattis announced last month that he was delaying enactment of the plan to begin allowing transgender individuals to join the US military.

“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,” Trump said in a series of tweets Wednesday morning. “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.”

“Thank you,” he added.

Ash Carter, the Defense secretary under Obama, ended the ban on transgender people serving openly in the military in 2016, but allowed for a year-long review process to allow the Pentagon to determine how it would accept new transgender recruits into the military.

On the eve of that one-year deadline, Mattis announced that he was delaying the implementation of the new policy, saying he needed more time.

“Since becoming the Secretary of Defense, I have emphasized that the Department of Defense must measure each policy decision against one critical standard: will the decision affect the readiness and lethality of the force?” Mattis said in a memo late last month. “Put another way, how will the decision affect the ability of America’s military to defend the nation? It is against this standard that I provide the following guidance on the way forward in accessing transgender individuals into the military Services.”

A 2016 Rand Corp. study commissioned by the Defense Department concluded that letting transgender people serve openly would have a “minimal impact” on readiness and health care costs, largely because there are so few in the military’s 1.3 million-member force.

The study put the number of transgender people in the military between 1,320 and 6,630. Gender-change surgery is rare in the general population, and the RAND study estimated the possibility of 30 to 140 new hormone treatments a year in the military, with 25 to 130 gender transition-related surgeries among active service members. The cost could range from $2.4 million and $8.4 million, an amount that would represent an “exceedingly small proportion” of total health care expenditures, the study found.

Trump’s decision marks a setback for LGBT rights groups who have expressed concerns that the Trump administration could chip away at progress the community has seen in recent years on the backs of a series of landmark decisions in recent years that have included the legalization of same-sex marriage nationwide and a repeal of the ban on gay people openly serving in the military.

Trump’s decision is also another setback for the transgender community following his decision several months ago to reverse an Obama administration policy allowing transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice.

The Obama administration faced heated criticism from the right last year when it announced the military ban and several Republican members of Congress have urged the Trump administration to reverse the decision, arguing that the decision does not serve the US’ defense interests.


  • Scooter

    Yea we need only those healthy rough and tumble folks in our military. It’s just gonna cost us too dang much. Listen, our president is trying to improve the economy. That’s why he’s buddying up with Goldman Sacs.

  • Go Trump!

    For all you who think it’s racist hateful etc., Prez. Trump is looking at the medical costs . He said we can’t be burdened with it. Think about how much money it would cost to cover all the medical procedures these people would want done. Why should all the tax payers pay for it. Those kind of medical procedures are NOT a need. They are a choice. It’s no different than having cosmetic surgery. Heck it’s the same thing so why should we tax payers foot the bill? Well how about if someone wants breast implants? How about we all pay for that? No difference there right? ……NOT! Same thing. So before you all think it’s cuz they’re just picking on the LGBTQ you need to look at the whole picture and stop focusing on little bits and pieces that aren’t even what it’s about.!

  • Are you for real?!

    By the way in his one speech, Prez Trump said he would protect the LGBTQ community from violence he didn’t say anything about protecting their rights. Heck they can basically say and do as they please but don’t let a Christian like myself talk about my belief which is I DO NOT support same sex marriage. Then you have a problem cuz the lgbtq say we are racist, hateful, etc. Meanwhile, to most people what they do do is more offensive to everyone, especially God but that’s OK. Way to go Obama administration for giving them more rights than anyone in this country!! Thank God that fool is out! Go Trump! Making America great again!!! :)

  • Wangdang

    When I read “After consulting with my generals and military experts”, I thought we were doing a preemptive strike on North Korea. COVFEFE!!!

  • Kellie Persun Miller

    Didn’t realize our military uniforms came in pink for girls and blue for boys. Men are allowed in, woman are allowed in, what does whether their transgender matter. I am more concerned about their qualifications that anything else.after all they are protecting our country.

  • Lloyd schmucatelli

    I absolutely LOVE the division in this country!

    I love how trump shows his ass and his gigantic meat and 2 veg to anyone and everyone.

    I love seeing and hearing the liberals squirm and lose sleep.

  • Viktor

    Straight people should not be in the military. We need them to repopulate the country after the war. Send those that do not reproduce to fight.

  • AAORD11

    The military was not a social experiment. Thank God Obama is finally gone and Trump had the courage to say enough is enough.

  • ZackForester

    Well, these comments are a shit show and once again prove that Scranton is surrounded by backwater racist transphobic Pennsyltucky. WNEP, please shut down the comments section so these can’t embarrass your station any further.

    • run along

      Run along now princess, the adults are in charge now. You can either get on board and enjoy the ride, or sit on the sidelines and get passed by.

  • DNA does not lie

    If I had a dollar for every gender…..
    ….I’d have 2 dollars and a whole lotta fakes.

  • magicmikexxsm

    I spent a little over 10 years in the military, and I can guarantee you I would not have liked it if I had to serve with freaks…’s bad enough serving with someone who may be gay, if they where we didn’t know it, they kept it to themselves….Trump did the correct thing…

  • Go Trump!

    Very good call on his part. The Lbgtq already have more rights than anyone else. I agree how are they going to defend this country when they can’t even decide what the heck they are. They are definitely confused and why have someone in confusion trying to defend our country. They’d be too confused and probably shoot one of our own! Lol

  • JessicaInWilliamsport

    Yeah, another edict from someone who avoided the draft 4 times…..due to heel spurs. Classless piece of garbage. Anyone who is willing to fight for their country deserves full rights in this country.

  • Are you kidding!?!

    The Military is for winning wars and National Defense, not liberal social experimentation. Unless you actually served in the military, you have no idea the environment in which it functions. Good decision by Trump.

    Also, if you allowed a person to transition in the military, the government would be responsible for all associated medical costs for the life of that person. There are better uses for that money.

      • magicmikexxsm

        PROLETARIAT LOL so you are associating a disabled vet who fought for his / her country and needs medical help with a FREAK, by it’s own choosing can’t figure out what the eff it is…we don’t need to pay for that $.h.i.t.

  • Sam I Am

    Well if they reinstate the draft, looks like a lot of people will all of a sudden become transgender.
    This would’ve been perfect in the Vietnam era instead of going to Canada

  • john williams

    If a person does not have the personal conviction of what and who they are, they do not have the mental tools to be trained as an effective Soldier or Marine to accomplish the job of protecting our country. And why should the military and taxpayer foot the bill for gender re-assignment anyway? That is a cost of individual choice.

    • LGBTQueen

      Transgender people do have a conviction of who they are, thats why they put up with years of therapy and a lifetime of discrimination to finally become who they know they are. If you transition you have to have therapists and doctors certify that you are strong and stable enough to handle all the backlash and bigotry against the trans community, which means they certainly have the ‘metal tools’ to protect our country. And frankly if a trans person wishes to serve our country then the least our country can do for them is help cover the cost of transition.

      • Are you kidding!?!

        Thanks for making the point that it is too much of an expense for the taxpayers to bear. There are other qualified recruits with no issues.

      • LGBTQueen

        the cost of covering transition would only raise health care costs by .13% approx. , 8 million, which is nothing compared to the $84 million spent a year on erectile dysfunction medicines. maybe we should think banning men from the military who can’t ‘get it up’ that would save a hell of a lot more money!

  • Real American

    My main issue isn’t so much Transgender serving in the military, but forcing taxpayers to foot the bill of their transition.

  • Conroy

    Apparently to NEPA transgender are not people, or the thousands already in service that are about to get fired.. You all make me sick for supporting this decision.

  • polishsbear

    In June of 2016 Donald Trump tweeted the following: “Thank you to the LGBT community! I will fight for you while Hillary brings in more people that will threaten your freedoms and beliefs.”

    And guess what? Fully 15% of LGBT Americans believed him and voted for him. And now he is throwing them under the bus. SUCKERS.

    So what happens now to the estimated 11,000 transgender Americans already in the military? Do they lose everything they worked for?

    • B

      The article said they estimate 1,320 to 6,630, which is a shitty estimation to begin with, I’m not sure where you got 11,000 from.

    • drain the sewer

      ‘Do they lose everything they worked for?’ Let’s hope so. As it is with liberalism, transgenderism is a mental illness and should be treated as such. The men and women in the military suffer enougn with PTSD – can’t imagine what would happen when you toss someone in their that doesn’t even know what gender they are.

    • magicmikexxsm

      POLISHSBEAR lol you’re a village idiot…nothing says you can’t be a gay man or women and join the military…….transgender is taking it too far…….

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