Trump Saves...Less Than 1%

Today, July 26, marks the day that President Trump banned the military from accepting transgender soldiers to serve our country in combat. Many people are supportive of this as they believe the social advancements taking place in our country hold us back from combative success, but many people are completely outraged about the decree.

"The president is creating a worse version of 'don't ask, don't tell,'" director of the Palm Center Aaron Belkin told the NY Times.  For those of you who don't remember, a Clinton-era policy did not allow queers to openly serve in the military.

"The thousands of transgender service members serving on the front lines for this country deserve better than a commander in chief who rejects their basic humanity," said senior staff attorney at the ACLU's LGBT & HIV Project Joshua Block to the Times.

OutServe-SLDN, a non-profit LGBTQ rights group has vowed to sue, meaning this decision will likely end up in court.

My initial reaction?  No words I actually want to post on my blog.

Trump's justification makes sense on the absolute surface--the cost to accommodate transgendered individuals would be too high for the military.  Although not exactly sensitive, it sounds logical right?

Logical until you take a look at the study done last year by the RAND Corporation, which reveals that allowing transgenders to openly serve would have minimal effects on cost.  Health care costs would increase about 0.04-0.13% per year.

Examining this study, there's no logic to Trump's decision.  The ONLY logical conclusion is that our president has a problem with gay/transgender individuals having basic human rights, and that's not okay.

This means the discharge of current transgender soldiers.  What happens to these individuals?  Where do they go?  Is he properly compensating them?  Creating jobs for them to assume?  No matter what accommodations he's willing to make (and I can't imagine him making many), he simply can't repair the damage of stripping someone's career away from them.

And for young transgendered individuals currently attending school and dreaming of joining the military one day?  They will not be allowed to serve their country, make their families proud, risk their lives for the rest of us.  They want to do what only a small percentage of the population has the guts to do, and they literally CAN'T now.  They have to choose between their career dreams and being true to their own identity.

So is this level of emotional, psychological, and likely financial damage to individuals and families worth the 0.04-0.13% in health care savings?  Tell me what you think.




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