The U.S. Senate is now considering the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2018 (H.R. 2810, “NDAA”). As the Senate debates military policy, it is likely Senators will vote on an amendment Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) are working on to undermine President Donald Trump’s August 25th Directive, “Military Service by Transgender Individuals.” You can help. Please urge your Senators to vote against the Gillibrand/Collins Amendment and to support our Commander-in-Chief’s Directive that returns the military’s focus to fighting and winning wars, rather than social engineering.
The president’s directive simply returns the military to its pre-June, 2016, policy regarding the recruitment of people who suffer from gender dysphoria and the taxpayer funding of sex-change surgeries for military personnel, and tasks the Secretaries of the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security with determining “how to address transgender individuals currently serving in the United States military.” Those suffering from gender dysphoria have a psychological and medical condition. Allowing people who identify as transgender to serve in the military, much-less be recruited for the military, will have a negative impact on readiness, recruitment, and retention.
President Trump’s directive also ensures taxpayer dollars are not used for attempts to change a person’s gender. Our research showed the Obama policy could cost around $3.7 billion over a ten-year period. These taxpayer dollars could be used to purchase a navy destroyer, a number of fighter jets and helicopters, or thousands of missiles. It is irresponsible to redirect taxpayer dollars that could be used to help win wars, to instead pay for sex-change surgeries that do not ultimately help the individual experiencing gender dysphoria, the military, or the country.
In addition, President Trump’s directive will ensure privacy and religious liberty concerns are not ignored. Under the Obama-era transgender mandate, a person could have his or her gender changed in military records without attempting to change his anatomical makeup. This presented a number of privacy concerns regarding individuals who are biologically and anatomically male, for example, using communal birthing and bathing facilities with biological and anatomical females. This raises privacy concerns, but also safety concerns. Not only that, but the Obama-era mandate did not provide any religious liberty protections for doctors, counselors, or chaplains who do not believe it is emotionally, physically or morally appropriate to attempt to change one’s gender. Going back to the longstanding policy that was in place prior to June 2016 ensures religious liberty, especially as it relates to addressing gender dysphoria, is not undermined.
This week, the Senate will likely consider an amendment to undermine President Trump’s directive. Urge your two U.S. Senators to vote against amendments to the NDAA that would undermine President Trump’s directive by calling them at (202) 224-3121, or email your Senators at the link below.