Supreme Court Allows Military Transgender Ban to Be Enforced
It may only be a temporary victory for the Trump administration, but the Supreme Court on Tuesday lifted injunctions against the military transgender ban. The ruling may be changed after litigation against the ban goes through the Ninth Circuit court and ends up back at the SCOTUS. But for now, the transgender policy is in effect and can be enforced…except for the other injunctions still outstanding.
The Hill reported,
Trump first announced in July 2017 via Twitter that he was banning transgender people from the military, saying “the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”
The policy then-Defense Secretary James Mattis ultimately issued in March 2018 disqualified from service anyone who has already transitioned or seeks to transition in the future, as well as anyone who has a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria. But it included exemptions for active-duty military members already serving openly and those willing to serve in accordance with their sex assigned at birth.
Is the transgender policy “unconstitutional? The Supreme Court did not rule on the policy itself. They only lifted the injunctions so that it could go forward until other cases are adjudicated. It will still allow some transgenders to serve and allow them to receive transition related medical care. The case will ultimately end up back at the Supreme Court, depending on the rulings in other courts. The policy still may not go into effect, since there are other injunctions against it.
“Indeed, the fundamental point of the ban — and why it is facially unconstitutional — is that transgender people are deemed categorically ineligible to serve based on a factor unrelated to their individual merit, qualifications, or physical and mental fitness to serve.” Attorney for the plaintiffs
But is is there a fallacy involved in the idea that the transgender policy is “unrelated” to their ability to perform their service? “Gender dysphoria” is a term used by the psychiatric profession. It is defined as “the condition of feeling one’s emotional and psychological identity as male or female to be opposite to one’s biological sex.” Is a service member’s emotional situation directly related to their ability to serve in combat?