Trump’s Transgender Military Tweet

By now, you’ve certainly heard: On July 26, 2017, President Donald Trump issued a three-part Tweet which issued the conclusion that transgender people would no longer be allowed to serve in the American military. The Tweet stated that the decision came after Trump consulted with his generals and military experts, and implied that the new policy would take effect immediately.

Not So Fast, Mr. Trump

While the Tweet insinuated that top U.S. military leaders were both aware and in support of the policy change, Senator John McCain told CNN that the announcement was a complete surprise, and chairman General Joseph Dunford also told reporters that the Joint Chiefs of Staff were not aware that the Tweet would be issued.

What’s more, Dunford has informed service members, and all U.S. citizens, that there will be no change in policy until the president has given direction through the correct channels. Army Chief of Staff General Mark Milley told reporters that he has received no direction for implementation. Clearly a Tweet, even a presidential Tweet, does not set policy but it definitely causes uncertainty and confusion.

Policy Talks in Progress

While President Trump’s Tweet may have lacked the power to make any immediate change, Trump has demonstrated time and time again that if he wants something, he’ll fight aggressively for it. As such, it comes as no surprise that while the Pentagon took no steps to enforce the ban by Tweet, talks between the Pentagon and the White House to work out the details of the ban have been initiated. Of course, what the result will be is unknown, and it is likely that ban or no ban, the outcome may be challenged in the courts. Unfortunately the Tweet and talks still leave many members of the military in limbo and unsure about their futures. These individuals want to serve and protect their country and may be unable to do this.

The Dangers of Discrimination

At the law offices of Napoli Shkolnik PLLC, our attorneys fully support human rights and equality, and will continue to advocate for protections for all people as such. We understand that if you are transgender and currently serving or have planned to serve in the military, you probably have dozens of questions about how the president’s Tweet, and future policies, may affect you. Our attorneys lend our support, and will continue to fiercely represent clients across the country who are victims of discrimination.