EMPIRE, Ala. (WIAT) — As the nation waits to see what happens, transgender veterans across the world are shocked by the President’s new proposed policy to prevent trans people from serving in the military.
CBS42 News spoke to a trans naval vet in Central Alabama, who calls the president’s decision uninformed.
52-year-old Navy combat veteran Junea Childers finds irony in the fact that Trump, who never served in the military, is now making a decision to ban trans Americans who have been more than willing to answer the call of service.
“I had no idea I would be in Beirut, Lebanon,” Childers said. “I had no idea that I would ever be there.”
Childers served in the early 80’s aboard the USS Iwo Jima.
“I was in during that time that marine barracks in the embassy was bombed in Beirut, Lebanon,” Childers said.
The President’s policy does not sit properly with Childers, who believes that her career is proof that trans people can serve.
“I would have to say that I oppose that,” Childers said. “Because I don’t feel like transgender people are any more of a liability than anyone else in the service.”
Those who support the president’s ban say that medical costs for surgeries could be better used elsewhere to combat enemies overseas – but Childers told CBS42 News that people just need to do their research.
“People that come out against it aren’t real legislators,” Childers said. “They are lobbyists and they are trying to sway people into believing something that’s not true.”
Despite the strides Childers says the country needs to make in accepting the transgender community, she remains hopeful about what’s to come – she just wants better direction.
“[People should] do more research and actually try to educate themselves, and not just try to themselves forward politically and actually move America forward.”
To Childers’s surprise lawmakers like Senator Richard Shelby, who serves on the armed forces committee in Washington, also spoke out against the ban.