by PETER PERKOWSKI
Originally published: September 22, 2017
Seven weeks ago, President Trump tried to set military policy via Twitter. As if sending a memo, the president tweeted, “Please be advised that United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.” That statement did not by itself constitute government policy. Unfortunately, since then the president has initiated genuine government action that could lead to implementation of the hateful statement.
Right now we are facing official efforts that could lead to the removal of transgender service members from the armed forces.
We at OutServe-SLDN, with our partner Lambda Legal, are trying to stop it. We have filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington seeking to permanently enjoin the White House directive that would ban transgender people from serving in the military. We contend that this directive violates the Fifth Amendment’s guarantees of equal protection and due process, as well as the First Amendment’s guarantee of free expression. Gender identity and expression are legally protected under our Constitution. Discrimination is not.