Monday, October 22, 2018

Trump's Department of Health and Human Services negates the humanity of transgender people

Perhaps we should rename it the Department of Ill Health and Inhuman Services?

Steve Benen (MSNBC/MaddowBlog) reports Trump admin eyes rolling back the clock on transgender rights.

the proposed change would “essentially eradicate federal recognition of the estimated 1.4 million Americans who have opted to recognize themselves – surgically or otherwise – as a gender other than the one they were born into.”

This comes on the heels of a series of related measures from the Trump administration that are designed to turn back the clock on the rights of LGBT Americans, including the president’s ban on transgender Americans serving in the military.

All of which may come as a surprise to those who believed what Candidate Trump had to say before he was elected.

I was doing some Googling over the weekend and came across this New York Times article from April 2016, right around the time Donald Trump was wrapping up the Republican Party’s presidential nomination. The headline read, “Donald Trump’s More Accepting Views on Gay Issues Set Him Apart in G.O.P.”

Readers were told at the time that while Republicans have opposed civil rights for LGBT Americans, Trump is “far more accepting of sexual minorities than his party’s leaders have been.”

… Trump, in apparent seriousness, said he, not Hillary Clinton, would be the “better friend” of the “LBGT” [sic] community. Just two days after the Orlando shooting, Trump added, “Thank you to the LGBT community! I will fight for you.”

If that is indeed what’s up, Trump could be redefining transgendered people as non-people. Here’s more from the NY Times article I posted on yesterday: ’Transgender’ Could Be Defined Out of Existence Under Trump Administration.

The new definition would essentially eradicate federal recognition of the estimated 1.4 million Americans who have opted to recognize themselves — surgically or otherwise — as a gender other than the one they were born into.

“This takes a position that what the medical community understands about their patients — what people understand about themselves — is irrelevant because the government disagrees,” said Catherine E. Lhamon, who led the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights in the Obama administration and helped write transgender guidance that is being undone.

The move would be the most significant of a series of maneuvers, large and small, to exclude the population from civil rights protections and roll back the Obama administration’s more fluid recognition of gender identity. The Trump administration has sought to bar transgender people from serving in the military and has legally challenged civil rights protections for the group embedded in the nation’s health care law.

Several agencies have withdrawn Obama-era policies that recognized gender identity in schools, prisons and homeless shelters. The administration even tried to remove questions about gender identity from a 2020 census survey and a national survey of elderly citizens.

Ms. Lhamon of the Obama Education Department said the proposed definition “quite simply negates the humanity of people.”

And I know why that is. Here is a snippet from my blog posts spanning the 2016 election, one being Donald Trump: “you can’t respect people because most people aren’t worthy of respect”.

Lastly, we should never forget Trump’s primal flaw - he has nothing but contempt for the vast majority of Americans. This is from NY Times report on Trump’s biographer’s tapes.

Who earns his respect? “For the most part,” he said, “you can’t respect people because most people aren’t worthy of respect.”

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