Oh Shiva! Where to start? I kind of didn’t keep up with the news the last week since getting back from my trip but then I was bored, and caught up on the news and came across this video by The Young Turks:
I ain’t happy about this. I hadn’t anticipated he would really do it.
When Tweets were just Tweets
I actually had some thoughts about this when I first heard about it. I knew at the time that the military would resist such a ban for a lot of reasons involving cost and loss of good men and women serving.
The idea Trump had of it “costing” a lot didn’t even make sense, if he was so concerned then he could of tackled how us taxpayers pay 5 times as much on Viagra for the military. Yes, if you didn’t know that (in case you were under a rock kinda like me) it’s true.
Prominent Transgender Service Men and Women
I remember back when this started I kinda half’agreed since I know for some of us transfolks gender dysphoria can be pretty crippling but I had known trans people who had served in the military without any issue. They I felt, deserved to serve no matter what since they did just as well.
Then I realized we often go beyond what most people can even do, such as the transgender navy SEAL of 20 years who was a member of SEAL team 6 who took out Bin Laden. And most recently now that it’s happened, they mentioned him in the video but the trans airman Logan Ireland. In the articles they mentioned other voices as well. There really is a lot of transgender folks serving with distinction and it’s a shame anyone would dishonor them like I’ve seen many do as of late.
Logan’s words say it best:
“I have never described myself as trans; I’m a mother—-ing Marine,” the corporal said. “That‘s all that matters. Don’t tarnish my title with your bigotry and fear of the unknown.”
A line of Defense; The Defense Department
It was noted in some places that the Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Homeland Security could fight against it and oh thank god it seems that at least for now transgender folks can continue to serve due to Mattis’ decision. However what they hope to find in these studies that we don’t already know I’m not sure.
We actually already had a Defense Department study on the efficiency of transfolk in the military and as many other sources here pointed out the cost is minuscule… 2.4 to 8.4 million a year. The impact on combat efficiency wouldn’t even register.
I actually think Beck’s words (in one of her articles linked earlier) sum it up nicely:
“We could buy one wheel for [Lockheed Martin’s] Joint Strike Fighter for the same price as everyone’s surgeries,” said Beck. “And the thing is not everyone who is transgender is going to get surgery. I’ve had zero surgeries. It cost the taxpayers zero.”
Even if it did impact it, the military could just not provide surgery or hormone therapy. I could see a bit of an argument there but no one is making it because it’s pretty obvious that this is motivated by transphobia, not actual concerns for the military.
Clearly transfolk are just as capable of being the best of the best in our armed forces and barely cost a dime.. I remember when people went crazy over the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell but what happened? Absolutely nothing. Did we loose combat efficiency or anything? Nope. Actually, I’d argue it brought more cohesion to squads since no one had to really worry about it anymore. I suspect the same thing will happen here, assuming sanity wins the day.
But you know, “costs” and stuff.