Delay on Trans Troops
All of America's allies dropped their bans on LGBT military service in the 1990s, including transgender service. There were no exceptions, everyone could serve, period. Meanwhile, at that time, the United States of America instituted Don't Ask Don't Tell, which made serving while gay a mandated secret and didn't even include nor mention transgender service. Now at this late date in world history, our military leaders are dithering to delay open transgender service yet again. It makes my eyes bug out in incredulity!
back in the 1990s I was riding on a packed
Israeli intercity bus on a busy Friday
afternoon. Its a tiny country which can be
traversed from the Lebanese boarder to the Negev
in about 5 hours, and so there's a weekly rush
of folks going home for the weekend by bus every
Friday afternoon. At one stop outside a
military base out in the middle of nowhere, a
young soldier going home for the weekend like
everyone else, got on the bus. He had his
Uzi machine gun slung upside down on his
back Israeli style; in uniform, short hair, and
had on a ton of eye mascara! I looked
around the bus at the usual assortment of
Israelis, ultra orthodox, secular, male, female,
young and old. Every last one was totally
unfazed, they'd seen all that before, it was
nothing to get excited about. Whenever
anyone gets on a bus in Israel, everyone looks
up to urgently decide if they are a security
threat. Once they decide the person is
safe, everyone looses interest, period.
Israelis have one single priority: Security!
Whatever else is going on, if its not a security
threat, it simply doesn't matter. They go back to yawning and reading their
newspapers. So the male soldier is
wearing mascara; he's not a security threat, so
it doesn't matter. That's their attitude.
I was the only one with my mouth hanging open,
blown away by the sight. I realized then
that Israel was way ahead of America in
progress. Over there, in the 1990s
already, a trans soldier could feel safe and
free to put on some makeup mascara before
heading home on public transit. While
America spent decades banning gay service, in
Israel nearly everyone has to serve, being gay
or trans was never an excuse. Israeli men
aren't afraid of queer folks, they're secure in
their masculinity; so serving alongside someone
who is gay, trans, Russian, Norwegian, Spanish,
or whatever isn't a problem.
Under the previous American administration, the
Pentagon led the way in integrating gay and
lesbian service members into our armed forces,
and had begun to do the same for transgender
patriotic volunteers wanting to serve our
nation. Now, suddenly the Joint Chiefs
have begun to raise all the old obsolete
objections again to urge a delay in affirming
transgender service. All of our allies
lifted their bans decades ago, pragmatically,
straightforwardly, without fuss, and ran into
zero problems. Budgetary analysts figured
out that it would not cost very much at all; not
too many trans folks would be clueless enough to
suffer boot camp and deployment to seriously
dangerous places to be able to go to the head of
the line for transitional services. Like
everyone else, those who volunteer really want
to serve. The available uniform fashion
choices are not particularly fabulous either.
Desert camo, jungle camo, blue water camo,
please, give me a break!
suddenly the scrambled egg crowd is worried
about showers, toilets, and all the other
nonsense again. Ridiculous! No one
goes into combat in spiked heels and sequined
dresses. They wear camo potato sacks like
everyone else. You can't even tell if
there's a male or female inside all that gear.
If they dare to raise concern about having to
send hormone medication to deployed troops, lets
remember the tranquilizers sent by the barrel
full to our troops deployed to Iraq and
Afghanistan. Courage in Vietnam was fueled by
marijuana paid for with MPC. But, in the
current wars, the drugs are supplied by the
Pentagon. Being transgender in uniform
takes more guts than I can imagine, the least
the Pentagon can do is support it.
in Congress, some clueless hatemonger proposed
an amendment to ban trans service based on
obsolete imaginings of military facilities such
as open bay barracks and showers that were
phased out over two decades ago to facilitate
the full integration of female service members.
what the hell is really going on? Where
did the negative policy change come from, who
influenced it? Under the previous
administration, the change over to open gay
service was implemented with positive Pentagon
leadership. Orders and training came down
the chain of command from the top. Our
allies implemented open gay service decades ago,
but the message was, 'America will do it faster
and better!' So now, suddenly, they're
afraid of transgender troops? Its the
enemy insurgents who should be afraid; hell hath
no wrath like an enraged trans man or woman in
full battle mode. Remember Stonewall!
Those were trans women who got pissed off and
its time to speak up again! Simple as
that. The battle isn't over folks!
Its time to stand up and speak out and demand
our honor, our duty, our right to serve!