One of the nation’s leading experts on military experts calls the Obama administration’s policy of allowing transgender troops to serve openly “more than irresponsible” and says the impact of the administration’s fiscal and social policies on the nation’s Armed Forces is “devastating.”
On Thursday, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced he was changing Pentagon policy.
“I’m announcing today that we’re ending the ban on transgender Americans in the United States military,” said Carter. “Effective immediately, transgender Americans may serve openly, and they can no longer be discharged or otherwise separated from the military just for being transgender.
“Additionally, I have directed that the gender identity of an otherwise qualified individual will not bar them from military service or from any accession program,” he said.
Center for Military Readiness President Elaine Donnelly told WND and Radio America this is a terrible decision for military readiness.
“For the Department of Defense to focus on a tiny, tiny, minority and disregard the concerns of the majority of people in the armed forces is more than irresponsible,” Donnelly said. “The secretary of defense is instituting a policy that will encourage indiscipline and sexual tension and a range of problems that have nothing to do with strengthening the Armed Forces. There’s no excuse for it.
“The military exists to defend the country. It is there to have certain qualities that are unlike the civilian world: honor courage, commitment, certainly integrity and honesty. You cannot ask military leaders to deny reality and teach their subordinates to deny reality without having consequences, especially when dealing with an issue of sexual privacy.”
Carter gave multiple reasons for making this decision after a year-long review, starting with giving the military the opportunity to find the best people.
“The first and fundamental reason is that the Defense Department and the military need to avail ourselves of all talent possible in order to remain what we are now, the finest fighting force the world has ever known,” said Carter, who added that the RAND Corporation estimates that 2,500 of the 1.3 million personnel on active duty are transgender.
Donnelly said the year-long study is nothing but smoke and mirrors.
“It’s not about having the finest force in the world,” she said. “The so-called study was consultation with LGBT activist groups, including RAND Corporation, which does nothing but polemics whenever they’re asked to issue a report on military social issues. Every time the DoD asks for something like this, the DoD gets what they want.”
She believes this is all about President Obama rewarding his political allies.
“It is a political payoff to LGBT activist groups,” Donnelly said. “It’s the final gift of this administration in the final LGBT Equality Month to top off a series of things that the administration has delivered to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender activist groups.”
In addition to focusing on a social agenda instead of combat readiness, Donnelly fears indoctrination will run rampant through the entire military community.
“Military leaders are being ordered to adopt this policy, to promote it, to conduct education classes, even down to the Department of Defense elementary schools – the largest school system in the world. Everybody in the armed forces will be indoctrinated to talk about gender dysphoria as if it is a normal condition and as if they are a civil rights group.”
Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Elaine Donnelly:
Secretary Carter said he also made the decision because all Americans deserve a chance to serve.
“Americans who want to serve and can meet our standards should be afforded the opportunity to compete to do so,” Carter said. “After all, our all-volunteer force is built upon having the most qualified Americans, and the profession of arms is based on honor and trust.”
Donnelly firmly rejects that, saying the policy change carries even more of a political taste given existing policy rejecting applicants on psychological grounds.
“We have, in military regulation, a list of conditions that disqualify you for military service. Among them are psychological disorders, such as anorexia nervosa,” said Donnelly, describing the condition as thin people convinced in their minds that they are really overweight and effectively starve themselves.
She said Carter himself doesn’t seem to grasp the magnitude of what he’s doing.
“At the news briefing, he was not even aware that this change that he just put his hand to will put into the Military Equal Opportunity non-discrimination policies, sexual minorities including transgenders, as if they were a special class,” she said.
Donnelly said she has no animosity toward transgenders, but they should not be in the military.
“Your heart goes out to these people, but this is not the responsibility of the Armed Forces of the United States,” said Donnelly.
From this policy to Obama allowing homosexuals to serve openly to the Pentagon backing women serving in ground combat and even being forced to register for the draft, Donnelly said the Obama years have had a profound impact on the military.
“(It’s) devastating. What’s harming our military is not just the resources being taken away, but the social burdens being loaded on,” Donnelly said.
She is disappointed more commanders have not spoken up or resigned in protest to the administration’s social policies and suspects the lack of objection from top uniformed officers is because they know the deck is stacked against them.
“They are demoralized,” she said. “I think the military is holding on by a thread.”
Donnelly said the military may not recover from a Hillary Clinton presidency because she is likely to continue the same policies. She said America needs a president and Congress that will review and overhaul much of what has been done to the military over the past eight years.
“It’s the only military we have,” Donnelly said. “It’s up to us as civilians to guard its real principles and its core values.”