July 26, 2017

Trump’s Transgender Ban Will Weaken the Military

By Phillip Carter and Amy Schafer

In an unexpected move Wednesday morning, on the 69th anniversary of President Harry Truman’s order to desegregate the armed forces, President Donald Trump tweeted that he had decided to bar transgender Americans from serving in uniform.

Trump’s latest edict surprised the national security establishment, short-circuiting a review of the current transgender policy recently ordered by Defense Secretary James Mattis and coming before the Pentagon’s personnel officials even had confirmation hearings, let alone started their jobs. The way the announcement was made begged the question of whether Trump discussed this issue with the military’s leadership at all. Worse though, on its merits, the order contradicts decades of military leadership on equal opportunity and flies in the face of empirical research showing transgender troops don’t hurt readiness. Quite the contrary: Wednesday’s move will only make it harder to maintain readiness, by slightly shrinking the pool of eligible recruits, removing current service members, and signaling to many others that today’s military is not the kind of employer they want to work for.

Read the full article in Slate.

  • Commentary
    • The Hill
    • June 4, 2020
    VA hospitals still an excellent choice for veterans

    As the first anniversary of MISSION Act implementation approaches, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is in an entirely unexpected position. While the MISSION Act of 2018...

    By Kayla M. Williams

  • Commentary
    • Lawfare
    • June 3, 2020
    Department of Homeland Security Law Enforcement Agencies Require Expanded Oversight

    Hundreds of Department of Homeland Security officers have been called up to serve along with other federal law enforcement officers and the National Guard to provide security ...

    By Carrie Cordero

  • Commentary
    • June 2, 2020
    Benefits for Veterans with Other than Dishonorable Discharges

    In the post-9/11 era, a “sea of goodwill” made up of organizations in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors has formed to support veterans, service members, their familie...

    By Zachary Jaynes

  • Reports
    • May 28, 2020
    Comparing VA and Non-VA Medical Centers

    Introduction Implementation of the Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks (MISSION) Act of 2018 is anticipated to result in expanded access...

    By Jill Inderstrodt & Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia