Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Susan Collins (R-ME) have introduced a bipartisan amendment that will keep the U.S. Department of Defense from banning transgender individuals from serving in the military. At the end of July, President Donald Trump said that the federal government will not accept or enable transgender individuals to “serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.” The following month, he directed Defense Secretary James Mattis to implement the ban. In 2016, former President Barack Obama announced that transgender people would be allowed to openly serve. The amendment would prevent the U.S. Department of Defense from dismissing qualified service members from the Armed Forces based on their gender identity.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.