San Francisco, CA – Palm Center director Aaron Belkin released the following statement in response to President Trump’s comments defending his transgender military ban during an interview this morning on Good Morning Britain.
“President Trump’s factually incorrect defense of his transgender military ban during an interview with Piers Morgan’s Good Morning Britain shows ignorance about the realities of military service and regulations, as well as a lack of knowledge of the science and medical research on transgender people.
“The Commander in Chief has yet again shown that he is developing military policy without regard for the experience of medical professionals, military leaders, transgender troops – or for the truth. This morning’s interview should send chills down the spine of every American who believes our military deserves the highest level of informed decision making from its leaders, not prejudice masked as policy.
“Trump asserted falsely that active-duty servicemembers cannot take even so much as an aspirin; and he repeated the debunked canards that medical care for transgender servicemembers is unmanageably expensive and that trans troops cannot be held to the same standards as other troops.”
Contrary to the President’s assertions, and as military surgeons general have pointed out, the Pentagon’s own data and the experience of open service show that, when held to the same standards as all other personnel, transgender troops meet medical, fitness, and deployability standards. Top military officials have been overwhelmingly supportive of letting qualified transgender troops serve, including the chiefs of all the military service branches. Two recent polls, by Quinnipiac and Dalia Research, found that 70% of respondents favor allowing transgender Americans to serve in the military.