Yesterday Donald Trump announced on Twitter that the United States will no longer “accept or allow” transgender individuals to serve our country in the military. The president's ban meant openly transgender people would no longer be permitted to enlist in the military and failed to mention the futures of the 15,500 transgender individuals currently serving our country.
Celebrities and political pundits responded swiftly and condemned Trump's discriminatory new policy. Making clear the matter is no joke, some comedians took on a serious tone yesterday. Chelsea Handler released a video thanking transgender military members for their courage and service, while Stephen Colbert addressed Trump with the straightforward message of "fuck you."
Jimmy Fallon opted to invite Patti Harrison, a transgender comedian, onto his show to speak out about Trump's latest discriminatory policy. Although Harrison framed her comments in a humorous manner, she also made some serious points. Her entire segment is a must-watch.
“When I saw the headline this morning at first I just read, ‘Donald Trump Bans Transgender People.’ And I was like, ‘Yep, sounds like him," she quipped. When Harrison learned the ban only applied to the military, she said she was shocked because she "assumed he already did that."
"I don't think Trump even knows what transgender means," she continued. "He probably thinks transgender people are those cars that turn into robots."
Harrison concluded on a more serious note and paid tribute to members of the transgender community who are currently serving, or who have served in the past, such as Kristin Beck, a decorated retired Navy Seal.
Today Marine General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, stated that there will be no modifications or changes in the policy for current transgender military members.
However, a policy put in place by Obama last year meant openly trans people would be able to enlist starting July 1. This has now been dismantled entirely, sparking outrage among the LGBTQ community, activists, and allies everywhere.