As Trump continues to perpetuate bigotry and division in the country, new details of his outrageous transgender ban have surfaced. According to the Wall Street Journal, the ban is set to go into effect within the next six months.
In a memo that is reportedly still being finalized, it was revealed that this ban will prevent new transgender members from enlisting. The military will no longer pay for hormone treatment or gender reassignment surgery, and current transgender service members will be subject to a new set of requirements for deployment and subsequent expulsion.
According to the new memo, Jim Mattis, the Secretary of Defense, will be allowed to dismiss transgender service members based on the new guidelines for deployment.
But there's no telling if he'll actually choose to expel any of the thousands of transgender members who are already serving.
Just before Obama left office he set a July 1, 2017, deadline for a decision regarding transgender recruits. But as NPR reported, Mattis dismissed that deadline in July.
In response to Trump's proposal for the ban on Twitter, a source close to Mattis told NYT that he was "appalled." Additionally, General Joseph Dunford said in a press conference that until the guidelines for the ban are released, "[the military] will continue to treat all of our personnel with respect."
We can only hope these sentiments remain and that Mattis won't abuse the power the Trump administration will give him. Transgender service members are not a "disruption." They deserve to be able to represent their country with dignity and respect, just like everyone else.