The Pentagon just blew a massive hole in Trump's argument against allowing transgender military service

The Pentagon just blew a massive hole in Trump's argument against allowing transgender military service
Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead
News & Politics

Per usual, Donald Trump has no idea what he's talking about. During a downright embarrassing interview with Piers Moran on Good Morning Britain, Trump told many lies, including this one about his reasoning for not allowing transgender Americans to serve in the military: “Because they take massive amounts of drugs, they have to—and also, and you’re not allowed to take drugs,” Trump said. “You’re in the military, you’re not allowed to take any drugs.”

By "taking drugs," Trump means the prescription hormones that many transgender individuals take. That said, not all transgender individuals take hormones, nor do they all have gender reassignment surgery, as know-nothing Trump assumed in the interview. Also, he's dead wrong about the drugs—nothing in military policy prohibits the use of prescription drugs.

“Many members of the military use prescription medication, and it is made available to them worldwide," Jane Schacter, an expert on gender and sexuality law at Stanford University, told The Washington Post. "Hormone therapy, in particular, is prescribed, including to manage the gynecological needs of non-transgender service members."

Actually, many transgender service members currently serving in the military take prescription hormones. “Medication for transgender people in the military would be — and is currently, for those transgender individuals already serving in the military — handled similarly to other prescribed medication where an emergency interruption is not life threatening," explained Joshua Safer, the head of the Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery at Mount Sinai Health System.

In fact, Trump was so glaringly wrong, a Pentagon spokesperson issued a statement refuting his claim.

“The Military Health System covers all approved medically necessary treatments and prescription medications,” Pentagon spokeswoman Jessica Maxwell said. “If a service member has a hormone deficiency for any reason (such as hypogonadism, hypothyroidism, menopause, etc.), he or she would be prescribed hormones.”

Maxwell told the Post that transgender service members who were diagnosed with gender dysphoria before the transgender ban was implemented in April (as was necessitated by Trump's ban) have been receiving the "medically necessary" treatments. In other words, they’ve been receiving hormone treatments.

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