There are approximately 2,500 transgendered individuals in the U.S. Military stationed all over the world, and thanks to Trump’s latest ban, their future is now uncertain.
For those who are unaware, Trump issued another ban today — this one on transgender people in the military. The rationale behind the ban varies, with some noting that the Pentagon has been planning this for a while and that they wanted some time to debate and discuss it. But since Trump has the patience of a toddler, he grabbed it and ran with it anyway. If you’re having flashbacks to the Muslim travel ban, you aren’t alone.
So what’s the reason behind it?
Ostensibly, it’s “because of cost,” with some claiming that the military doesn’t allow people with asthma or other chronic health issues to join, so why should they allow transgender people? The problem is that being transgender isn’t a chronic condition, it’s a curable one — it’s cured by transitioning. And while the surgery is expensive, does the best-funded military in the world really have room to whine about how much caring for the people who go out and risk their lives for it costs? They aren’t exactly counting pennies to get by at the Pentagon — not with $842.7 billion dollars to play with, anyway.
So what are some real reasons, then? Here are three possible ones, and all of them involve playing politics with the lives of people who fight for this country. Remember that next time Trump or any Republican claims to love or support the troops.
The Sessions Issue
One possible reason might be because Trump has been bashing his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, over the last few days. By this reasoning, Trump is using this as a bone to get the conservatives who are mad at him for trashing Sessions back on his side.
Now, the situation with Sessions is way too complicated to summarize here in any meaningful way, but yes, it does involve the Russian investigation. Which brings me to my next possible reason.
The Russian Investigation
The Russian investigation will dog this man to his grave unless it puts them there first, and this is exactly the sort of thing he might do to try to throw heat off. It’s blunt, it’s clumsy, it’s stupid, and it’s short-sighted — exactly the sort of thing a person does when they’re frantically trying to escape scrutiny.
The Mexican Wall
Another possible theory is that Trump is using this to try to win over conservative members of the Congress who are refusing to budge on his wall. By this thinking, Trump is banning transgender individuals from the military in an attempt to win these conservatives over.
Of course, there are more than three reasons: this reverses an Obama-era policy and given Trump and the Republicans have a pathological hatred of Obama, it could just be Trump trying to spite him. Or it could be all of them or none of them. Nobody except Trump really knows why he did this, but it is for certain is that people are going to suffer — just the way the Republicans like it.