February 27, 2019
At $8 million, gender-free isn't free. According to the Pentagon, that's the tab U.S. taxpayers are being stuck with thanks to Barack Obama's extreme military makeover. As of February 1, the Defense Department has forked over millions of dollars that it could have spent on equipment, salaries, and training to gender reassignment surgeries, hormones, and psychotherapy. And liberals are complaining that the border wall is a diversion of DoD funds?
In the two years since Barack Obama decided to make the military his petri dish for LGBT experimentation, the costs have been significant -- and not just in dollars. More than 1,500 troops have been diagnosed with gender dysphoria in the ranks, and the latest report shows how many resources they're syphoning away from actual warfighting. For just those servicemembers, the Pentagon says the military has paid for 22,992 psychotherapy visits, 9,321 hormone prescriptions, and a whopping 161 surgeries (ranging from hysterectomies and breast augmentation to "male reproductive" construction).
Surgeries alone racked up an eye-popping $2 million -- an average of $12,422 a person. Add that to the $5.8 million in therapy, and we're talking about a significant cash drain. Try telling that to the far-Left, who's already planning a series of House hearings objecting to the president's policy -- which is that our military "cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgenders in the military would entail." Liberals argue that his stance is "ignorant" and "mean-spirited." But they're ignoring the fact we're wasting money on gender reassignment instead of the troops' own assignment: fighting and winning wars.
"Military service is a privilege," Rep. Vicky Hartlzer (R-Mo.) argued, "not a right. It's predicated on the singular goal of winning the war and defeating the enemy. All decisions on personnel and funding should be made with this in mind." The $7,943,906.75 for the existing troops is already steep. Imagine how much we'd be paying if President Trump hadn't reversed the Obama policy! According to FRC's Peter Sprigg, the cost of the Democrats' plan -- which would throw open the door to anyone who identifies as transgender -- would be as high as $3.7 billion over 10 years. And what happens when these men and women regret the surgery (as an overwhelming number of patients now do)? Will taxpayers be on the hook for reversals too?
As it is, only 23 percent of Americans think allowing the gender-confused into the military is a good idea. Good luck finding that many who think paying for a completely elective operation is a better use of taxpayer dollars than Humvees, tomahawk missiles, or helicopters. But most congressional Democrats still don't see the irony. They've spent weeks railing against the president's decision to use some of the defense budget on the border wall -- only to turn around and justify the same military spending millions on transgender therapy. At least securing the border is a legitimate national security goal -- unlike this expensive war on common sense.
It's time to tell Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to stop wasting her time on frivolous hearings for an agenda the troops don't share -- and worse, undermines national security. Americans want the military to do its job -- not the bidding of the fringe Left!
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.