A year after former President Barack Obama initiated the practice of recruiting and accepting transgenders into the United States military – and just five months after Commander-in-Chief Donald Trump told the Pentagon transgenders would not be allowed into the Armed Forces in any capacity, the Department of Defense announced Tuesday that it is preparing to accept transgenders on New Year’s Day.
"While reviewing legal options with the Department of Justice, the Department of Defense is taking steps to be prepared to initiate accessions of transgender applicants for military service on January 1, 2018, per recent court orders,” Pentagon Spokesman Maj. Dave Eastburn notified the Washington Examiner in an email.
Obama’s transgender legacy lives on
In November, court orders were issued to temporarily block Trump’s ban on transgenders, and a courtroom decision was made several days ago that will keep the administration from delaying Obama’s July 2016 lift of the restriction on transgenders in the military any longer.
“Last month, district court judges in Washington, D.C., and Maryland issued preliminary injunctions in two federal lawsuits that prohibit the Pentagon from moving ahead with Trump’s directive to phase out transgender service and gender reassignment surgeries,” the Examiner recounted. “The D.C. judge issued a further ruling last week that specifically prohibits Defense Secretary Jim Mattis from delaying earlier plans to begin transgender recruitment into the military next month.”
The month before Trump tweeted about his orders to keep transgenders from serving in the military, Mattis divulged his plans in June for the commencement of transgender troops’ enlistment and commissioning to be delayed for six months.
Trump took Mattis’ plans one step further in late July, declaring via a series of tweets to put an end to transgender troops serving in any capacity – an announcement that was followed up in August with orders to the Pentagon.
“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow … [t]ransgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military,” Trump’s first, second and third tweets posted on July 26 read. “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming ... victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.”
The Pentagon’s shift on the matter reportedly has a lot to do with leftist activism infitrating the legal system.
“It’s mainly because of the well-funded legal teams pursuing lawsuits against the nation and the activist judges who affirm their complaints,” WND reported. “Ironically, they have decided that while the Barack Obama administration was allowed to arbitrarily change the U.S. military rules on the issue, President Trump is not allowed to change them back.”
A bad move for the military
Center for Military Readiness President Elaine Donnelly says that she and her independent public policy organization view the outcome of the matter as “very disappointing.”
“If they haven’t already done so, the Department of Justice should have asked for an immediate stay of the court ruling handed down in the D.C. Court on October 30 and in Baltimore on November 21,” Donnelly asserted, according to WND. “Both rulings exceeded the authority of the district judges, who have no constitutional power to run the military.”
The leader of the conservative group that focuses on analyzing social issues in the military insists that LGBT activists in the court system should not be allowed to usurp the court system – and president – to forward their politically correct agenda.
“The high-handed rulings also disregarded the process of review ordered by President Trump on August 25,” Donnelly added. “If motions to reconsider and stay the rulings are denied, DOJ should file appeals at the Circuit Court levels and the Supreme Court, if necessary.”
The debate goes on …
It is reported that at least four lawsuits – in Washington, D.C., Maryland, California, and Washington state – are pending as they review Trump’s reversal of Obama’ pro-transgender recruiting move in the military.
“Federal Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly issued a temporary order concluding – based on equal-protection arguments – it was OK for Obama to open the door to transgenders, but not acceptable for Trump to reverse Obama,” WND informed.
Family Research Council (FRC) President Tony Perkins, who is a Marine veteran, showed frustration over the social experimentation taking place in the military at the expense of America’s safety. He condemned Kollar-Kotelly’s ruling, which he says is an indication that she believes she can run the military better than the commander-in-chief.
“This is where judicial activism is leading us,” Perkins stressed. “The courts have moved beyond legislating on the invented rights of abortion and same-sex marriage to clearly usurping the constitutional authority of the executive branch. The president has the primary task of protecting Americans, but we see the courts weakening his immigration policies designed to protect America from threats and now telling the commander-in-chief how to run the military.”
Another legal expert at FRC, Peter Sprigg, is assured that the law in the four cases is clearly on Trump’s side.
“This was a policy decision on the part of the Obama administration to reverse the longstanding policy that excluded transgender persons from the military,” Sprigg noted, according to WND. “It is a policy decision of the Trump administration to reverse that. This is really not a constitutional issue.”
Pro-LGBT coverage of the transgender ban is blamed for the judge’s radical left ruling.
“I think that the judge has internalized the way that the media covers this, which is that it’s a civil rights issue,” Sprigg offered. “It’s a matter of discrimination. It’s a matter of irrational animus toward people because of who they are. They’re simply failing to look at the real issues.”
LGBT mobilization in the military
GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders Transgender Rights Project Director Jennifer Levi insists that transgenders’ acceptance into the military is a done deal.
“January 1 means January 1,” Levi stated in response to the district court ruling enforcing the deadline to permit transgenders in the military, according to Marine Corps Times. “That’s the date when the military can no longer deny transgender people from enlisting. The court’s earlier order was clear on that point.”
The LGBTQ activist maintains that any legal action contesting the decision is futile and should be dropped because she believes the matter is over.
“This latest ruling is an exclamation point – not that any was needed,” Levi insisted.
But conservatives at the DOJ already expressed last week that they are not lying down – as they continue to weigh their options.
“The Justice Department had indicated in legal filings that it may seek an emergency stay in the D.C. judge’s ruling so that the accessions could be delayed,” the Examiner’s Travis J. Tritten noted.