June 14, 2017
It's been a long time since Americans read a headline about the U.S. military that actually had to do with national defense. And unless the Trump administration steps in, that's not about to change any time soon. Days after requesting a two-year delay on Barack Obama's transgender troop policy, the Army was forced to start training its soldiers and its civilians on how to welcome the gender confused into its ranks.
With the July 1st deadline looming for all branches to accept people who identify as transgender, the Army had no choice but to start the process with special sessions yesterday. "The training module specifically outlines key roles and responsibilities of commanders, transgender soldiers, military medical providers, and administrative management organizations," said Lt. Col. Jennifer Johnson. It's a "lesson," she went on, "that will assist soldiers in understanding Army policy for the military service of transgender soldiers so that they can implement the policy while maintaining morale, readiness, and good order and discipline" -- important values that at least two service chiefs already worry will be compromised.
Both the Army and Marine Corps have been vocal about their objections to the change, which puts political correctness ahead of common sense -- and more importantly, national security. Of course, the Obama administration argued that excluding the gender-confused is "discriminatory." But the reality is, the military discriminates constantly to find the best physical and mental recruits it can. Why is this any different? Otherwise qualified men and women are turned away from the military every day for bad eyes, flat feet, asthma, and a host of other traits. But in the phony name of fairness, the Defense Department would willingly let people into the military whose mental state is not only unstable -- but a detriment to their fellow service members? It's incredible. Allergies can keep you out of the military, but gender dysphoria can't?
If the Left were as focused on the world's threats as it was on LGBT activism, America would be the safest, most powerful country in the world. Instead, Obama's legacy is jeopardizing the nation's safety by catering to (what generous estimates say) is one half of one percent of the population! Making matters worse, these are struggling people, who, as even the Left admits, aren't deployable because of the medication they're under or treatments they're receiving.
And the frustrating piece of this is that rolling back the guidance is as simple as a DOD memo. Since the policy wasn't approved by law, Secretary James Mattis, President Trump, or even Congress could step in and stop the change from taking place. But so far, with the clock running out, none have. Now, as a result, tens of thousands of our finest soldiers and civilians are wasting hours learning about transgender etiquette at the expense of warfighting skills. Today's military, FRC's Lt. General Jerry Boykin (U.S. Army-Ret.) points out, spends "all their training time in classrooms listening to lectures on diversity, tolerance, and inclusion instead of the Military Code of Conduct."
"Talk to any service member today," he points out, "and you will find that a majority of them will express great frustration with the amount of time that they spend in these lectures at the expense of preparing for war. Now you can add another classroom lecture and more wasted training time, which will further degrade their individual and unit readiness... We must restore the warrior culture and ethos because the enemies of this nation will have no mercy and will not care about how well versed we are on tolerance, inclusion, diversity, or sensitivity. All they will be concerned with is whether we are capable of and willing to kill or capture them on the battlefield."
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.