Obama & Clinton's Responses To Trump's Trans Military Ban Are Called For
On Wednesday, July 26, President Donald Trump announced he's banning trans people from serving in the military. He cited "medical costs and disruptions" as the justification for this decision. This move was met with disgust from a wide array of people, including Former Vice President Joe Biden. But two voices missing from this chorus of boos were those of President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Based on how much people are talking about them on social media following Trump's announcement, people are clearly hoping Obama and Clinton will speak out.
While her mother hasn't said anything, Chelsea Clinton made her feelings about Trump's decision abundantly clear on Twitter.
Elite Daily reached out for comment from Obama and Clinton but did not hear back at time of publication.
Trans people had been banned from military service until June 2016, when the Pentagon reversed the decision.
At the time, then-Defense Secretary Ash Carter said,
We don't want barriers unrelated to a person's qualification to serve preventing us from recruiting or retaining the soldier, sailor, airman or marine who can best accomplish the mission. We have to have access to 100% of America's population.
Evidently, Trump doesn't feel the same way.
Research also contradicts Trump's purported concerns about the "medical costs" of having transgender people in the military.
According to The Washington Post, the military spends five times as much on Viagra as it would on medical care for transgender troops.
A June 2016 study from the RAND Corporation found the estimated cost of extending gender transition-related health care coverage to transgender military personnel would only increase health care expenditures by between $2.4 million and $8.4 million annually.
Comparatively, it's estimated it cost around $3.6 million every time Trump goes to Mar-a-Lago, his Florida resort.
Moreover, Trump's assertion transgender people would disrupt combat readiness is also not supported by research.
The 2016 RAND study mentioned above showed 18 other countries allow transgender people to serve openly in the military with "little or no impact on unit cohesion, operational effectiveness, or readiness." This includes key American allies: Australia, Canada, Israel, and the United Kingdom.
Long story short, this is arguably a highly discriminatory, nonsensical, and regressive move from the Trump administration.