Courts in recent years largely have backed transgender activism, but an appeals court on Friday upheld President Trump’s order barring military service for people with gender dysphoria.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington overturned a lower court’s decision to block Trump’s partial ban on “transgenders” in the military.
“In light of the substantial constitutional arguments and the apparent showing that the policy accommodates at least some of plaintiffs’ interests, we think that the public interest weighs in favor of dissolving the injunction,” the ruling said.
“This is a victory for our servicemembers who are tasked with defending America because it allows our military to focus their mission on fighting and winning wars rather than social engineering,” said retired Lt. Gen. William Boykin, executive vice president of the Family Research Council.
“The Constitution very clearly delegates to the commander-in-chief the job of running the military – not the courts,” he said. “The appeals court ruling helps pave the way for President Trump to continue moving the military away from Obama era political correctness which left our nation’s defenses at its lowest levels of readiness since before WWII.
“There is no basis for the courts to take up President Obama’s mission to divert taxpayer dollars from mission-critical training to funding for controversial gender reassignment surgeries for service members,” he said.
“We trust that other appeals courts reviewing this policy, and the Supreme Court, will agree and leave the responsibility for keeping our military strong and country safe where it belongs – with our commander-in-chief,” concluded Boykin.
FRC pointed out a Smithsonian survey found 61 percent of U.S. service members oppose opening military to individuals who identify as transgender.
Liberty Counsel said the court also agreed with the Trump administration that former Defense Secretary James Mattis’ plan is not a blanket ban on “transgender” people.
“It ruled that District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly made a ‘clear error’ in deciding that the injunction should stay in place. The court stated that Mattis’ plan was not ‘foreordained’ by Trump because it took into account a panel of military and medical experts, evidence from the implementation of the open service policy, and ‘a reassessment of the priorities of the group that produced’ the open service policy,” said Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver said: “The decision to overturn the ban on ‘transgender’ people in the military is a victory for our servicemembers who cannot serve and protect America when they are forced to function with confusion, dysfunction, and distraction. The report from the Defense Department concludes that there are substantial risks to military effectiveness and readiness regarding people who have gender dysphoria. The military is not a social club but rather a fine-tuned fighting machine of men and women who defend our freedom. It is not a right but a privilege to serve.”
Trump released a memo last March disqualifying “transgender” individuals from serving in the military, stating that the defense secretary and the homeland security secretary should “exercise their authority to implement any appropriate policies concerning military service by transgender individuals.”
His announcement explained those “who may require substantial medical treatment, including through medical drugs or surgery” due to gender dysphoria are disqualified from military service, except for some circumstances.
Mattis, at the time, released an implementation plan allowing people already in the service to continue, but they would have to serve according to their gender at birth.
They, he found, “could undermine readiness, disrupt unit cohesion, and impose an unreasonable burden on the military that is not conducive to military effectiveness and lethality.”
The issue, however, is not fully resolved, since other courts have issued rulings similar to Kollar-Kotelly’s.