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Trump transgender troop limits can take effect, top court decides


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Trump transgender troop limits can take effect, top court decides

By Andrew Chung

 

2019-01-22T152315Z_1_LYNXNPEF0L1DA_RTROPTP_3_USA-COURT-TRANSGENDER.JPG

Light from the setting sun shines on the Supreme Court in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday handed President Donald Trump a victory on his policy barring many transgender people from the military, lifting lower court rulings that had blocked it on constitutional grounds from going into effect.

 

The decision, with the court's five conservative justices prevailing over its four liberals, granted the Trump administration's request to put on hold injunctions issued by federal judges against enforcement of the policy while a challenge to its legality continues in lower courts.

 

The court did not resolve the underlying question of the legality of the Republican president's plan, which reversed the landmark 2016 policy of his Democratic predecessor Barack Obama to let transgender people for the first time serve openly in the armed forces and receive medical care to transition genders.

 

But in lifting the injunctions, the court signalled it likely would decide in favour on the administration when it eventually is asked to rule on the merits of the challenge brought by transgender people already in the military or hoping to join. The plaintiffs argued that the policy violated the U.S. Constitution's guarantee of equal protection under the law.

 

The justices declined the administration's request to immediately take up the fight over the policy's legality even before a California-based federal appeals court that often has been criticized by Trump rules on the matter.

 

Attorneys for the plaintiffs condemned the court's action and said some current troops could face discharge. Various injunctions had allowed new transgender troops to join the military as of Jan. 1, 2018, in addition to the estimated thousands already serving. The U.S. military allowed gay troops to serve openly for the first time starting in 2011 under Obama.

 

"For more than 30 months, transgender troops have been serving our country openly with valour and distinction, but now the rug has been ripped out from under them, once again," said Peter Renn, an attorney for Lambda Legal, which represents some of the plaintiffs.

 

House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, said Trump's "ban on trans Americans serving in our nation's military was purpose-built to humiliate brave men & women seeking to serve their country."

 

The Department of Defense praised the court's action.

 

"As always, we treat all transgender persons with respect and dignity. DoD's proposed policy is NOT a ban on service by transgender persons," the Pentagon said in a statement, adding that the policy was based on "professional military judgment and will ensure that the U.S. Armed Forces remain the most lethal and combat effective fighting force in the world."

 

Trump, whose administration also has taken other steps to limit the rights of transgender Americans, in 2017 announced a plan to ban transgender people from the military. Trump cited the "tremendous medical costs and disruption" of having transgender troops.

 

In March 2018, Trump backed a revised policy crafted by then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis to ban transgender people who seek or have undergone gender transition steps. It also would ban under certain circumstances transgender people who experience gender dysphoria, a condition the American Psychiatric Association defines as clinically significant distress due to "a conflict between a person's physical or assigned gender" and the individual's gender identity.

 

LEGAL WRANGLING

Federal courts blocked the administration's original policy, finding it unconstitutional. The administration then failed to convince judges in Washington state, California and the District of Columbia that the revised policy was any more legally sound.

 

Trump got a boost on Jan. 4 when a federal appeals court overturned an injunction issued by a judge in the U.S. capital. A fourth injunction issued by a judge in Maryland will have to be lifted before Trump's policy can be implemented, but the administration said the justices' action applies to that one, too.

 

A 2016 Pentagon-commissioned study found that any impact on cost or military readiness from having transgender troops would be marginal. It estimated there were around 2,450 transgender troops at the time. Not all transgender people experience gender dysphoria, according to the American Psychiatric Association, which opposes a transgender military ban.

 

The new policy lets people diagnosed with gender dysphoria after entering the military continue to serve only if they are willing to do so in their "biological sex." The administration has said 937 active-duty service members have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria since 2016.

 

Mattis announced his resignation in December over other differences with Trump.

 

Trump's administration has rescinded federal guidance protecting transgender students in public schools concerning bathroom access, while the Justice Department has argued that a federal law against workplace discrimination on the basis of sex does not cover transgender employees.

 

The Supreme Court in 2017 sidestepped a major ruling in another transgender rights case when it cancelled arguments in a bathroom access dispute involving a Virginia high school student after the administration reversed the federal guidance.

 

(Reporting by Andrew Chung; Editing by Will Dunham)

 

 

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 -- © Copyright Reuters 2019-01-23
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50 minutes ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Another one of Obama's insane policies overturned. Great stuff Trump, keep the military an efficient fighting force, and never mind the PC brigade.

Firstly, the policy has not been overturned, it’s simply on hold while the courts decide.

 

Secondly,  Trump (draft dodger) trying to prevent people who wish to serve their country in the military from doing so is another example of precisely why he’s not fit for the office of POTUS.

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5 minutes ago, Chomper Higgot said:

Firstly, the policy has not been overturned, it’s simply on hold while the courts decide.

 

Secondly,  Trump (draft dodger) trying to prevent people who wish to serve their country in the military from doing so is another example of precisely why he’s not fit for the office of POTUS.

Or they want Uncle Sam to pay for surgeries.

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16 minutes ago, Chomper Higgot said:

Firstly, the policy has not been overturned, it’s simply on hold while the courts decide.

 

Secondly,  Trump (draft dodger) trying to prevent people who wish to serve their country in the military from doing so is another example of precisely why he’s not fit for the office of POTUS.

Well it is possible to have transgender troops, but first you need to change the enemy. Once our enemies such as ISIS modernize and learn to respect homosexuality and transgender people then it will fine to send our transvestites out to fight in the desert. Until then it is like waving a red flag to a bull, and people are going to get hurt. BTW to prove my stance is not racist or whatever, I felt the same way when Prince Harry insisted on going out to Afghanistan, for the same reasons.

 

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2 minutes ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Well it is possible to have transgender troops, but first you need to change the enemy. Once our enemies such as ISIS modernize and learn to respect homosexuality and transgender people then it will fine to send our transvestites out to fight in the desert. Until then it is like waving a red flag to a bull, and people are going to get hurt. BTW to prove my stance is not racist or whatever, I felt the same way when Prince Harry insisted on going out to Afghanistan, for the same reasons.

 

Oh you’re concerned for their safety.

 

Bless.

 

 

It doesn’t seam to be an issue that bothers these fine young people who wish to serve their country.

 

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The trans genders only wantt to serve so that they get FREE gender reassignment surgery at the militaries (tax payers) expense. A no brainer for those that want a free medical ticket for the rest of their lives. 

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20 minutes ago, IAMHERE said:

The trans genders only wantt to serve so that they get FREE gender reassignment surgery at the militaries (tax payers) expense. A no brainer for those that want a free medical ticket for the rest of their lives. 

Could you back that up?   I know several transgenders who served because they love their country.   Oh, and they didn't even avail themselves of government funded gender reassignment.  

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Oh dear- seems to be a field day for all the village idiots!

 

"Our troops, our troops...our precious troops!"
Unless they are trans or gay or (disabled) veterans - then they can go and #$%@ themselves!

Bigotry in its purest form! 

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4 hours ago, Chomper Higgot said:

Firstly, the policy has not been overturned, it’s simply on hold while the courts decide.

 

Secondly,  Trump (draft dodger) trying to prevent people who wish to serve their country in the military from doing so is another example of precisely why he’s not fit for the office of POTUS.

Like Grandfather Trump too. Runs in the family.

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5 hours ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Another one of Obama's insane policies overturned. Great stuff Trump, keep the military an efficient fighting force, and never mind the PC brigade.

So wanting to serve your country is now PC.

 

Who knew...

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1 hour ago, IAMHERE said:

The trans genders only wantt to serve so that they get FREE gender reassignment surgery at the militaries (tax payers) expense. A no brainer for those that want a free medical ticket for the rest of their lives. 

What because a transgender person could not possibly be a patriot wishing to selflessly serve their country?

 

Away with you and your gross generalization slurring people who wish to serve their country, and for which surprise surprise you have no evidence. 

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5 hours ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Well it is possible to have transgender troops, but first you need to change the enemy. Once our enemies such as ISIS modernize and learn to respect homosexuality and transgender people then it will fine to send our transvestites out to fight in the desert. Until then it is like waving a red flag to a bull, and people are going to get hurt. BTW to prove my stance is not racist or whatever, I felt the same way when Prince Harry insisted on going out to Afghanistan, for the same reasons.

 

Your argument above would hold water, but for the fact that there are women in the armed forces.... and I’m pretty sure that Isis would put females in the same basket as transgenders.

 

but then....I’m also wondering how you figure an isis fighter would distinguish between a straight man and a homosexual man, or a man who used to be a woman, when looking thru a scope, or detonating an IED

 

.what would be the red flag... perhaps the common knowledge, via media reports, that .001% (whatever... I don’t know the figure... 2450 out of the entire military) of the US military is transgenders.... ergo all military is transgender?

 

also... change the enemy... what? The enemy hate us and want to kill us.... and we want to kill them.... if you want them to respect something, perhaps respecting non combatant lives would be a good place to start.... perhaps getting them to stop sawing of the heads of male captives might be another (vs homosexual or trans or female) 

 

once again.... Ill conceived nonsense from your keyboard... perhaps it needs to go in for a service

 

and BTW, to prove that my stance isn’t political (republican v democrat), I don’t support transgenders in the military, or rather, anyone with “gender dysphoria”... or any other diagnosabable mental issue.... mind you, that said, after years of reading Thai visa, I’d prefer to face off against a lady, vs a lady boy 😁

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5 hours ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Well it is possible to have transgender troops, but first you need to change the enemy. Once our enemies such as ISIS modernize and learn to respect homosexuality and transgender people then it will fine to send our transvestites out to fight in the desert. Until then it is like waving a red flag to a bull, and people are going to get hurt. BTW to prove my stance is not racist or whatever, I felt the same way when Prince Harry insisted on going out to Afghanistan, for the same reasons.

 

What flavour Kool Aid is it you drink? Bubba say 'STEP AWAY FROM THE COMPUTER'.

 

This must qualify for most ignorant post of the year.

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7 hours ago, TopDeadSenter said:

Another one of Obama's insane policies overturned. Great stuff Trump, keep the military an efficient fighting force, and never mind the PC brigade.

Lmao.... in cowardly dodging the draft, trump has arguably kept the US military a more efficient fighting force for decades past.... cowards in uniform are way worse than patriots in uniform, regardless of what does or does not hang between their legs.

 

personally, I can’t understand why a man, who cowardly turned his back on his nation, when he was called upon, was even allowed to run for a position that includes the roll as commander in chief.

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Having served in the US Army from 1968-1988, I was and am more interested in a persons ability to perform their job and accomplish the mission. What gender a person is, from birth or otherwise, is not in my equation of ability to perform and to defeat the aggressor.

 

So much posted, so many comments, so much armchair wisdom. I wonder how many of these pundits ever served anything other than themselves at a buffet line.

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The court's decision, though, does not apply to the policy's legality, or President Trump's authority to issue the ban. The decision was simply related to the policy's enforcement while the case continues to go through litigation at the lower courts.

The issue brought a 5-4 conservative-liberal split, with Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan voting to keep the block on enforcement in place, while the five conservative justices, including Justice Brett Kavanaugh, voted to allow the policy to go into effect.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/supreme-court-rules-pentagon-can-limit-transgender-military-service-while-lawsuits-continue

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1 hour ago, Benmart said:

Having served in the US Army from 1968-1988, I was and am more interested in a persons ability to perform their job and accomplish the mission. What gender a person is, from birth or otherwise, is not in my equation of ability to perform and to defeat the aggressor.

 

So much posted, so many comments, so much armchair wisdom. I wonder how many of these pundits ever served anything other than themselves at a buffet line.

How many were in your Regt/Corps & how did they perform in 'nam or any other theaters during that timeframe?

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According to the judgement handed down some transgenders are able to stay in the Armed Forces - so if that is not a problem what is Trump carrying on about? Just grandstanding as usual? 🤔

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16 hours ago, Benmart said:

Having served in the US Army from 1968-1988, I was and am more interested in a persons ability to perform their job and accomplish the mission. What gender a person is, from birth or otherwise, is not in my equation of ability to perform and to defeat the aggressor.

 

So much posted, so many comments, so much armchair wisdom. I wonder how many of these pundits ever served anything other than themselves at a buffet line.

This.

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17 hours ago, farcanell said:

Lmao.... in cowardly dodging the draft, trump has arguably kept the US military a more efficient fighting force for decades past.... cowards in uniform are way worse than patriots in uniform, regardless of what does or does not hang between their legs.

 

personally, I can’t understand why a man, who cowardly turned his back on his nation, when he was called upon, was even allowed to run for a position that includes the roll as commander in chief.

The 12 Presidents who did not serve in the military are: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Buren, Grover Cleveland, William H. Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert C. Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, William J. Clinton and Barack H. Obama and Trump.  Clinton and Trump were draft dodgers I don't know about Obama.  

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1 minute ago, marcusarelus said:

The 12 Presidents who did not serve in the military are: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Buren, Grover Cleveland, William H. Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert C. Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, William J. Clinton and Barack H. Obama and Trump.  Clinton and Trump were draft dodgers I don't know about Obama.  

There was no draft when Obama was of military age, but we are getting off-topic.   Let's stick to the topic.

 

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17 hours ago, Benmart said:

Having served in the US Army from 1968-1988, I was and am more interested in a persons ability to perform their job and accomplish the mission. What gender a person is, from birth or otherwise, is not in my equation of ability to perform and to defeat the aggressor.

 

So much posted, so many comments, so much armchair wisdom. I wonder how many of these pundits ever served anything other than themselves at a buffet line.

I served a long time ago, and I can honestly say that if a "transgender" or anyone that even looked a bit "that way" had actually joined up, s/he would have had a hard time of it- they'd never had been accepted, along with homosexuals.

I don't know any macho guys that serve in the teeth corps now, but I can't see their attitude having changed much. Warriors aren't into touchy feely much, and the battlefield is no place for political correctness.

Apparently, since women have been admitted into more general military roles, the sexual abuse situation has risen dramatically, and only to be expected, given it's guys that kill people for a living.

Nowadays I couldn't care less if a guy wants to get his bits cut off and wear a dress, but I'm a lot older now than I was when I was in the green machine.

 

IMO, if enough TGs wanted to join up, as long as they could pass all the tests that the guys do ( no easy passes ), they could have a special unit with just them in it.

 

If they are allowed in, NO WAY they should be given any special treatment, drugs or surgery, and be assigned as the sex that they are genetically.

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11 hours ago, lvr181 said:

According to the judgement handed down some transgenders are able to stay in the Armed Forces - so if that is not a problem what is Trump carrying on about? Just grandstanding as usual? 🤔

Would depend on what their job is. Some soldiers have little contact with warriors, eg drone pilots.

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2 hours ago, thaibeachlovers said:

Some soldiers have little contact with warriors, eg drone pilots.

 

"The warriors"... haha.  Is this all some dystopian science fiction novel to you?

 

2 hours ago, thaibeachlovers said:

if a "transgender" or anyone that even looked a bit "that way" had actually joined up, s/he would have had a hard time of it- they'd never had been accepted, along with homosexuals.

 

That sounds like a military that has some serious coping problems.  I think the US military is better than that.  They need to be challenged to get over their issues, not coddled and "protected" from their irrational fears.

 

2 hours ago, thaibeachlovers said:

Warriors aren't into touchy feely much

 

What has that go to do with anything?  Do you think transgender people are going to be expecting hugs and hand-holding on the front lines?

 

2 hours ago, thaibeachlovers said:

Apparently, since women have been admitted into more general military roles, the sexual abuse situation has risen dramatically, and only to be expected, given it's guys that kill people for a living.

 

Sexual abuse is to be expected... wow.

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