Opinion: Biden Lifts Transgender Military Ban

Source: nbcnews.com

Ariana Bruno, Writer

On Monday, President Joe Biden signed an executive order reversing the ban on transgender troops serving in the military that was inflicted by the Trump administration.

“What I’m doing is enabling all qualified Americans to serve their country in uniform,” Biden said. Advocacy groups have been fighting the ban for around three years now.

Though, the Trump ban had essentially ended an Obama administration initiative to allow transgender troops to serve openly in the military. Now because of Biden’s administration, it will require all agencies to expand their understanding of the ruling to protect LGBTQ+ people from discrimination in numerous areas, including housing, education, employment, and health care.

Hearing the news that Biden was removing this ban felt like a sigh of relief. I strongly believe that we should be encouraging inclusion and opposing discrimination of any kind. When Trump announced the ban in 2017, it sparked a ton of controversy among the LGBTQ+ community. Trump was excluding people who were willing to put their life on the line for our country simply because they identify as a different gender. I feel that as a country we are stronger when including all types of people no matter what their gender may be. Discrimination doesn’t and never will serve a purpose anywhere, including the military. This ban the Trump administration implemented was a vivid example of transphobia and discrimination, which is something transgender people across America experience regularly.

Everyone, no matter what their race, religion, sexuality, or gender they are, should be allowed to build a life where they can thrive and support themselves. Nobody should be allowed to decide who can and can’t benefit from the “American dream” of wanting to achieve something, including going into the military where they’re offering up their lives to protect us and our freedom that we enjoy every single day.

No one should be at risk of being denied housing or refused service simply because of who they identify as, who they love, and what skin color they are. Everyone should be free to go into a store, serve in the military, or eat a meal at a restaurant. These are basic human rights that were/are being taken away because of Trump’s administration. Minority groups shouldn’t fear facing discrimination in their everyday life just because they’re more different than you and I. They should be allowed to participate in aspects of life just like everyone else because, at the end of the day, we are all human.

Back in 2017 when this ban took place, Trump tweeted out, “…and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entitle.” However, according to the AMA (American Medical Association), they came out with a statement and said that there was no medically valid reason for the ban, thus proving that this was an act of transphobia. It’s unfair Trump turned away millions of people who wanted to serve and protect our country. That ban seemed to be less about healthcare and more about politics.

Though Biden is taking the first step into protecting LGBTQ+ rights by reversing this ban, and this is something I’m looking forward to, I hope someday we can all live in a world where everyone is treated equally and not afraid to lose basic human rights because you chose to be different.

**This opinion article reflects the voice of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of The Viking Times as a whole.  Like most news outlets, The Viking Times is a non-partisan media platform.**