In my last post, I discovered my use of scientific-profiled formatting when writing something as simple as a blog post. My promise is to fill this blog post in no such a format and replace it with a more personal touch. What will flow is a telescope into my personal shame for the current state of the United States of America: Land of the Free, Home of the Brave.
But are we free? Are we brave…enough?
When I turn on the news every day, feelings of rage, shame, discontent, and a certain fear creep further into my skin. In recent days, it’s as though it is seeping slowly, intravenously, every drop reaching the surface of my bones. And I feel this kind of fear and shame equally because it is a stark contrast to my past and present alike. It’s a contrast that on one side is felt by less than 1% of the population, and the other is felt by a larger percentage. Sorry, I don’t have the exact numbers here. But I wouldn’t doubt it’s much greater. On one side is my military background, and the other is my place within the LGBTQ+ communities.
Almost as if we were graced with a blessing from the gods following Transgender Rights, thanks to President Barack Obama, were we graced with Netflix television shows such as Sense8 to further reinforce our aforementioned communities. The show arrived at a time of political upheaval, finding strength in each other rather than further discriminating against one another.
But I need to speak on a somewhat connected and disconnected issue all the same: Donald J. Trump – Current President of the United States of America.
As previously expressed, I’m not one who normally expresses themselves in a number of ways with the exception of my Wife. And my political affiliation is on the long list of non-expressible features. However, it goes without saying, I’m especially appalled by the current nature of this country and administration alike. “You’re a bisexual male. Why do you care about Transgender rights?”. Well, it’s because I care more about you as a human being. We’re all in the same boat, sort of speak. It wasn’t long ago when it was homosexual men and women were court-martialed (arrested/imprisoned) for being the aforementioned. And you certainly were denied becoming a part of the military if your sexual orientation and/or gender were made known prior to entry. Of course, this didn’t stop all sides from hiding who they were when entering, allowing themselves to honor their country.
Many individuals I have known during my time in the United States Military were either transgender, gay, lesbian or even bisexual. Many, if not all other service members, didn’t care. Why? Because we all cared more about whether you can still do your job, protecting the people to the left and right of you. And that fact remains true this day.
Whether you are part of the LGBTQ+ communities like myself or not, it doesn’t matter. If you wish to join the United States Military to honor your country, to fight for your country, then so be it. I am astoundingly appalled the current administration announced, via Twitter of all methods go, moving to ban all transgender individuals from entering the military to serve in any capacity whatsoever. This, in turn, would remove the rights of transgender individuals, first put in to place by the most recent President of the United States, Barack Obama. It comes at a sensitive time still – when all transgender individuals just started becoming a little more comfortable with themselves in the modern world we call the United States of America.
Many questions came rushing to the surface once I read that despicable tweet.
What’s going to happen to current transgender service-members? Will Trump further exercise excessive abuse of his power countering any progress made over the previous nine years? As much as I hate to admit it, but I remember asking myself that same question during Trump’s hatred for Muslims nearly sparked an international conflict. What shall become of my Muslim friends who are some of the greatest people you will ever meet?
More eloquently and more precise to the point, Jen from “Inside of Jen’s Head”, wrote:
“…not one of these hard working, patriotic people has ever had anything negative to say about serving with a trans person, or anyone else from the LGBTQ+ community for that matter. So why would it then be a distraction.
I am not trans. However, I do know what it’s like to be different, and I can’t stay silent and watch from the sidelines while an already marginalized group is further discriminated against. Especially now, when they have only just begun to adjust to having this right, only to have it ripped away again. It is not right, and no one should be okay with this.”
As a United States Army Veteran, I fought for the freedom and rights of ALL. For this asshole to remove anyone of those said freedoms and rights, what was the point of serving in the first place? What would it have all been for?
I can only surmise one fact out of this horrendous mess, however: my time in the U.S. Military may be over, but my time in community activism has only just begun.