While some might say our world is dull because of the horrible events taking place, there is at least one organization that is full of color, and that is the United States Military.
In September 2011, President Obama ended a long debate that began in 1993 when the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law was passed. This law allowed gay, lesbian and bisexuals to join the military as long as they did not openly say what their sexual preference was. Although this was a progressive law, it still made people feel uncomfortable.
In 2011, the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law was repealed, and gays, lesbians and bisexuals could be open about who they were while still being allowed to fight in the armed forces.
During the past decade, gays, lesbians and bisexuals have slowly been more accepted by society. For a very long time, if a person opened up to family and friends, they would be looked down upon, and society would not accept them. Although this does still occur, it seems as though society is changing, and we are more accepting of people who have different sexual preferences.
There is one group of people though who are fighting for their rights now, and as a nation, we have made it clear that we are with them: transgender people.
Just like gays, lesbians and bisexuals, more and more people are openly stating that they are transgender because they believe that today’s society will accept them. Republican politicians and states such as North Carolina have tried to make them feel the opposite, but the national government is standing behind them.
On June 30, the United States Military lifted the ban on transgender people who want to serve in the armed forces. This is yet another milestone for our country. The decision came after military leaders noticed how much of an influence women and homosexuals have had on the armed forces.
According to CNN, there are more than 200,000 women in the active-duty military, including 69 generals and admirals; 134,000 homosexuals serve as well. This presence has led to the enrollment of 150,000 transgender people, according to the Williams Institute at UCLA.
The ending of the ban takes place immediately, and transgender service members will be allowed to receive the same medical treatments as any other military member.
Why did it take so long for all of this to happen? Homosexual and transgender people have been viewed pretty much as aliens to the rest of society. Why? They are just like everyone else except for the fact that they have a different sexual preference or they identify as the opposite gender. Is this wrong, bad or even illegal? Of course not. The United States is a melting pot of different people, and homosexual and transgender people are no exception. This is a great thing for our country because even though there are people who are not accepting of these people, the national government does accept them, which is a way to influence citizens to do the same.
Transgender people will be allowed to get hormones and surgery if a doctor thinks it is necessary during their time of duty, which was decided to help make transgender people feel comfortable while they are serving.
Progress is being made in our country to carry out what our Bill of Rights states. We are a country of equal and endless possibilities, and no one should be singled out based on race, religion, sexual preference or sex association. We are all Americans, and I am proud that transgender people now have the right to be open and fight for our country.