U.S. Military Repeals Ban on Transgender Service Members

PentagonWASHINGTON (Reuters) The Pentagon on Thursday ended its ban on openly transgender people serving in the U.S. military, formally providing an allowance to an estimated thousands of U.S. troops who once could have been kicked out of the armed forces.

The repeal, which ends one of the last barriers to serving in the military, comes after a 2011 decision to end the U.S. military’s ban on openly gay and lesbian people serving, despite concerns that such a move could be too great a burden in wartime and would undermine battle readiness.

“We’re eliminating policies that can result in transgender members being treated differently from their peers based solely upon their gender identity rather than upon their ability to serve,” Defense Secretary Ash Carter told reporters.

Carter said that within 90 days, the Pentagon would create a guide book for commanders on how to lead transgender service members and medical guidance to doctors.

Within one year, transgender individuals would be allowed to join the armed forces, he said.

Carter said that based on a study carried out by the Rand Corporation, there were about 2,500 transgender active-duty servicemembers and 1,500 reserve transgender service members. Still, Rand’s figures were within a range, which at the upper end reached 7,000 active duty forces and 4,000 reserves.

“The reality is that we have transgender service members serving in uniform today,” Carter said, acknowledging the policy change will have implications for issues including deployment and medical treatment.

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He added that at least 18 countries already allowed transgender personnel to serve openly in their militaries.

Carter announced in 2015 that he intended to lift the ban and laid out a series of steps, including a six-month study on the implications of lifting the restrictions. But advocates for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community said the process, which eventually stretched to nearly a year, has taken too long.

Advocates praised Carter’s announcement on Thursday and said it followed several moves by the military to be more inclusive in the last decade.

“I would hope that it showcases the fact that the sky will not fall, the world will not come apart, by us being a more inclusive and open society,” said Matt Thorn, executive director of OutServe-SLDN, an advocacy group for LGBT military personnel. “I don’t think anybody should be concerned or afraid about moving forward with this policy.”

But critics have argued that Carter is putting the political agenda of the Democratic administration of President Barack Obama ahead of military readiness.

“Over the next few weeks, we are going to continue to push for actual answers to the readiness questions we’ve been asking for nearly a year to which we have still not received a response,” Republican Representative Mac Thornberry, chairman of the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee, said in a statement.

Christian News Network edited this report. 

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  • Amos Moses

    Not a slippery slope ………… a cliff ……………. /SMH

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    US military needs noble brotherhood, not this. Can’t USA behave worthy of soldiers’ life and sacrifices? What’s the use of preserving a Sodom? Men must protect women and children.

  • 201821208 :)

    “And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female” Matthew 19:4

  • Nidalap

    So…do females who want to be males now have to follow the higher physical fitness standards?
    I have a sinking feeling that they’ll just lower the standards to the female version for all eventually…

  • http://HisPlaceDanville.com Stephen Anderson

    This will definitely effect basic training. Soldiers will now have to learn to correctly fold both their shorts and their panties. So Obama’s plan to defeat the Islamic State is to field an army of moral degenerates who don’t even know male from female. That should go well. But then he will never field an army against ISIS. His purpose is to remake America in his own likeness.

  • Josey

    Now, they can trade in their guns for fingernail files, maybe turn their vehicles into pink camouflage.
    What have you become America? You certainly are a laughing stock to other nations. And this pervert who invaded 1600 pennsylvania ave. is so delighted with himself and shame on Congress, the judicial court, the potus and all Americans who are going along with this lie. These who are confused as to what sex they were given at conception need deliverance, not the lie that it’s ok. WOE TO THOSE WHO CALL GOOD EVIL AND EVIL GOOD! Your judgement will be swift when Jesus comes back to judge the nations. As for me, I’ll already be with Christ Jesus because I have accepted Him. Their end goal is neither female or male but a androgynous being. They even have homosexual males pretending to be transgender when they are just sodomite males and they have females pretending to be transgender males even though they know what they are, it is to make it look more common than it really is, to normalize it. with that being said there are those who are male who dress like women and women who dress like men but it’s not as common as they are pushing it down the throats of the American public and you can tell the difference between a male dressing up like a woman and a woman who dresses like a man, some kind of ugly there. People should be repulsed but such is the days as were the days before the flood. Can’t wait to see our Lord Jesus Christ and leave this sick world behind!

  • http://www.bibleversusconstitution.org/ Kingdom Ambassador

    QUESTION: Would this have ever occurred in 17th-century Christian Colonial America whose governments of, by, and for God were established upon Yahweh’s immutable moral law, including Deuteronomy 22:5 and Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13?

    ANSWER: Of course, not!

    OBSERVATION: There must, therefore, be a definitive moment in America’s history when her Christian character and biblical course were formally altered. That point was in 1787 when the 18th-century founders replaced the 17th-century Colonial governments for their own humanistic government of, by, and for the people based upon capricious man-made Enlightenment traditions.

    EVIDENCE: See free online book “Bible Law vs. the United States Constitution: The Christian Perspective,” in which every Article and Amendment is examined by the Bible. Click on my picture, then our website. Go to our Online Books page and click on the top entry.

    Then, find out how much you REALLY know about the Constitution as compared to the Bible. Take our 10-question Constitution Survey in the right-hand sidebar and receive a complimentary copy of a book that EXAMINES the Constitution by the Bible.