Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pentagon still bans transgendered from military, and the public hardly notices: more about culture than privacy or cohesion?

Sandyha Somashekhar has an important front page story in the Washington Post on Tuesday reminding us that transgendered people are still banned from military service, link here. And in August the Post had reported a story on a study by Checkpoint reporting that over 15000 transgendered people served covertly in the military, here and that it would not be difficult to lift the ban.  The story mentioned issues with Selective Service registration, which still requires that only men register.
Transgendered people can be “heterosexual” or “gay” after sexual reassignment surgery;  all combinations have occurred.  The “other” Scott Peck interviewed a now-female in 1993 who had been forced to leave the Navy after 15 years but continued in exactly the same job in intelligence, as a GS without a uniform.  Remember, intelligence services didn’t officially end their bans even on LGBT civilians until 1996, after an XO from President Clinton (who spoke at HRC Saturday night).
The different attitude toward “trans” as opposed to “gay” seems to reflect a cultural attitude and not much more.  Some of our mentality now seems to practically revere the “masculine gay” (look at the popularity of all the main characters in the movie “Judas Kiss” – even Shane – but their demeanor is always gender-conforming).  How many of us are ready to see Mort in “Transparent” (TV, Oct. 6) as a hero?  

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