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The Importance of Biden Lifting the Military Ban on Transgender People

Now that Joe Biden has taken office as the new president of the United States, many individuals are holding him accountable for his promises, and rightly so. With Trump’s previous policies that affected thousands of American people, the Biden administration has to deal with the aftermath of the previous presidency. One policy that Biden recently reversed is the ban on transgender people joining the military.

The ban on transgender people joining the military was imposed by Trump in a tweet that he sent in 2019. Within the order by the Defense Department, transgender troops with gender dysphoria who were taking hormones or had transitioned to another gender were “banned” from enlisting into the military. Troops that were already serving and were diagnosed with gender dysphoria were required to serve in the gender assigned at birth and were barred from taking hormones or getting transition surgery. This was a reversal of Obama’s policies that supported transgender individuals in the military during his presidential term.

Associated Press

Under Biden’s new policy, transgender service members won’t be discharged based on gender identity. This is a step forward from Trump’s administration, which caused thousands of transgender individuals to leave the military.

Biden has also issued an executive order clarifying that gay and transgender people are protected against discrimination in schools, health care, the workplace and other realms of American life. He also nominated his assistant secretary of health, Rachel Levine, who would become the first openly transgender federal official to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Although this is groundbreaking for the LGBT community, there is still quite a lot that needs to be done. The previous presidency imposed anti-LGBT rhetoric that is still in effect to this day. But with Biden’s memo to “advance equity and support communities of color and other underserved communities,” there is hope that things will get better.

Valerie is a sophomore at the University of Central Florida majoring in Journalism with a minor in Film. She enjoys reading/writing poetry, playing the ukulele, and hanging out with her friends. When she isn’t writing or doing classwork, she’s either listening to some good jams or rambling about a new film that just came out. 
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