Trump's Transgender Military Ban Is Not About Money And Politics, It's About Hate And Bigotry

Trump's Transgender Military Ban Is Not About Money And Politics, It's About Hate And Bigotry

Just read the facts.

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Yet another day has passed in America and Trump has done something radical for no reason. This time Trump's plan to ban transgender people from serving in the military is one step closer to becoming permanent.

Trump has attempted to ban transgender people from serving in the military before, but lower courts placed injunctions on this ban. On Tuesday, January 22, 2019, the Supreme Court put the lower court injunctions on hold in a 5-4 decision along ideological lines, allowing the ban on transgender service members to go into effect. Basically, since the Supreme Court decided to put the lower courts' injunctions on hold, we are one step closer to trans people being banned from the military permanently. Even though the ban is not complete yet, if the Court's five-justice conservative majority upholds the ban in a final decision, it will be active for the foreseeable future.

The talk of banning trans people from the military started with a tweet (obviously) from Trump in July of 2017 in which he discussed how trans people are a disruption and a financial burden due to medical care.

realDonaldTrump / Twitter

As far as the financial aspect of trans people in the military, they make up such a small population of the military that costs would not go up significantly. Anyone who knows someone that is seeking gender-affirming healthcare knows that it is expensive, but the military seems to think it is too expensive to pay for.

The RAND Corporation covered the statistics of trans healthcare, too. Gender-affirming healthcare would only increase costs by "$2.4 million and $8.4 million annually, representing a 0.04 to 0.13 percent increase in active-component health care expenditures." Those might seem like big numbers in a raw dollar amount, but in the grand scheme of things, you can see that the percent of things do not increase more than even a 0.50 percent increase.

The trans military ban is wrong in so many ways. It's fueled off of hate and bigotry. Not only do its fundamentals fail to stand on their own merit, but it affects people's lives and their well-being. Though the number of trans people in the military may not be large, they are still there and they will suffer because of this. Some people may become unemployed, their mental health may go downhill, they may lose access to all their healthcare — not just gender-affirming healthcare — and it will severely damage their future and ours as a society.

This doesn't just impact us now, it changes our future and it will harm so many people's lives.

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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Finding Out My Brother Is Gay Made Me Rethink My Religion

Who knew a simple sentence could be so hard to get out, come to terms with and to understand.

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When I found out that my brother had "come out of the closet," I was upset. Why would he choose this for himself, can't he change his mind? “Maybe it's just a phase," I would tell myself. I was hurt, after all these years that I had stood up for him, I felt that he was deciding to finally give in to the bullies who mocked him for being feminine. I felt that he had conformed to their hateful words and in a way let them choose his sexuality for him. Being raised in the LDS church I had it engrained in my mind that being gay was very wrong and a decision that was looked down on by not only the members of the community but by God himself.

Now that I knew my brother, my best friend, was a part of this group I wanted to understand. One question that was in the back of my head through the process of accepting him for who he is was whether or not people are "born gay." Since the initial confusion and frustration, I have grown tremendously in accepting not only my brother but many others for who they are. After learning of my brother's sexual orientation I have had many discussions with him as well as done my own research both online and in my heart. Finally over time, and many changes in life, my views have changed and my mind opened on the heated debate of homosexuality's origin.

I want nothing but happiness and true love to find its way to my brother's life and will do anything and everything in my power to help him feel comfortable in who he is. I have come to develop a strong appreciation for his strength and ability to be so true to who he is. His knowledge in who he is at such a young age has truly become an inspiration to me in a way I never could have imagined. However, I often forget that just because his family accepts him doesn't mean he doesn't still face discrimination from others who have not come to terms with the fact that our sexuality is not a choice.

In this article, I'd like to share parts of a (not so greatly written) essay I wrote in high school on the topic. Although it is not my best writing I am sharing it in optimism that it inspires others to do some research of their own. I am hopeful that in my lifetime I see a society that is safe and supportive for those in the LGBTQ community including my brother.

Homosexual: (of a person) sexually attracted to people of one's own sex.

To Love: feel a deep romantic or sexual attachment to (someone)." (Dictonary.com)

The way we are raised is a huge part of who we are and who we will become. Finding ourselves and our personal beliefs become complicated by the ideas of our parents. Place of upbringing, religion, parenting, interests, are all a few others of the many things that impact our views and actions throughout our lives. For example, a child raised by say, two dads will grow up being accustomed to the idea of "love is love" and there is no assigned gender to marriage. Whereas a child growing up in a home of strict religious background will be most likely taught that "a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife."(Genesis 2:24), meaning that marriage should be between a man and a woman. These ideas taught by their parents and mentors from young ages and will influence them for life. Studies have shown that neither child is at an advantage or disadvantage compared to one another. It doesn't quite matter what the gender of your parents is, it matters how they raise you. A neglected or abusive home with a mom and a dad is not a better environment for a child than a gay home.

I have found in my research that there seem to be two main sides to the argument that I have decided to focus on. There are those who think that homosexuality is a chosen sexual orientation. They often say that they feel LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) members have an illness and believe it can and should be cured. Then there are those who feel that everyone should be accepted for who they are. These people often those that see the attraction to the same sex as something that some are born with feeling. There are actually many scientists and psychologists who stand on this side of the debate. They have found even some animals have some sexual tending. That's right, humans are not the only species that has same-sex relations. At the Edinburgh zoo, according to UK mirror news, "a pair of male flamingos adopted a fluffy grey newborn chick after it was knocked out of the nest by its parents."

The topics of love, gay rights, ethics, and human equality are all a few of many hot topics in our society today that can be put into the subject category of homosexuality. So why would someone choose to put themselves through the pain, hate, losses, and evils of the world if they didn't really feel what they say they do for others of the same sex as them? If people weren't born gay how would there be gay Christians for example. If they are told all their life that being gay is wrong why would they want their family to turn away from them? Why would someone choose to live a life of discrimination and constant fear of being harmed by others? Many even say they wish they could change how they feel. Hannahbrooke30, a writer stated in a post on debate.org "Trust me if I could change I would. My own family looks down on me because of this..."

If gays choose to be gay, then when did you choose to be straight?

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