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Trump Hit With Lawsuits for His Terrible, Unconstitutional Transgender Military Ban


The Trump administration’s attack on trans rights have only gotten more vicious and cruel this week, as it’s making moves to carry out Trump’s promise of banning transgender troops from enlisting and serving in the U.S. military, citing “tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.” (Fact check: these costs are pretty much negligible. BTW, speaking of tremendous costs?)

The White House delivered guidelines to the Pentagon that advised a stop to funding trans-related medical care recently and you can read our break-down of the policy memo that reversed Obama administration rules here. In short, it stops the military from funding the surgeries of enlisted members, and has some terrible transphobic implications in the way it’s written.

In response to the ban, Trump is being sued for violating the constitutional rights of transgender Americans in what will hopefully be a case that holds the orange monster accountable for the hate he incites. Buzzfeed reports that “[two] sets of transgender plaintiffs sued Trump and top military officials on Monday,” one from the U.S. District Court in Western Washington by Lambda Legal and OutServe-Service Members Legal Defense Network and a second from the U.S. District Court in Maryland by the ACLU.


The ACLU suit, filed on behalf of six transgender soldiers, argues the ban “violates the constitutional guarantees of equal protection and substantive due process by singling out transgender individuals for unequal and discriminatory treatment.” It also writes in a 39-page complaint that the ban “discriminates based on sex and transgender status and that the ban is based on uninformed speculation, myths and stereotypes, moral disapproval and a bare desire to harm this already vulnerable group.”


These suits expose the ban for what it is—a bigoted attack on human rights with no basis in research, science, or logic. The only reason for this ban, which does nothing for U.S. security, is to attack transgender Americans in what many are saying was the work of known anti-LGBTQ Vice President Mike Pence and other Conservative leaders.

Lambda Legal’s senior attorney Peter Renn says in a statement:

This ban not only wrongfully prevents patriotic, talented Americans from serving, it also compromises the safety and security of our country. Thousands of current service members are transgender, and many have been serving openly, courageously and successfully in the U.S. military for more than a year—not to mention the previous decades when many were forced to serve in silence.

We need to loudly and vocally stand up against this kind of violence and blatant discrimination. We need to recognize these attacks as the civil rights violations they are, and make it clear that those who stand up for human rights will show up for trans rights. If we don’t, we become complicit in creating a society where violence against trans bodies—physical, verbal, or structural—is permitted to exist and grow. We can not let that happen.

(via Buzzfeed, image: screencap)

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