President Donald Trump's tweet that transgender Americans have no place in America's military drew immediate pushback from LGBT Tech, which advocates for LGBT issues, particularly tech-related in Washington.
"During the 2016 campaign candidate Trump stated that he would be much better for the gays than Hillary Clinton," said LGBT Tech executive director Chris Wood. "Today's actions have shown the utter disregard President Trump has for the promises he made to our community. Today's action reinstating the ban on military service by transgender service members is an insult to the thousands of service members already serving in our military as well as those contemplating service. President Trump's attack on transgender people is an attack on the dignity and privacy rights of all individuals and it must be repudiated.”
The military has been working on the logistics of integrating transgender people into the services, factoring in medical and taxpayer cost issues, per instructions from the previous administration, but the new marching orders would appear to moot, or at least mute, that year-long effort.
In a series of tweets, the President said that after consulting with "my Generals and military experts," the U.S.Government "will not accept or allow [that means those already in service] transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.
“Our Military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail."
“Over the next few days we will see the practical impact of President Trump's policy shift and LGBT TECH will be fighting alongside all other civil rights organizations to overturn this odious policy," said Wood.
Former Star Trek star and current LGBT activist George Takei (Sulu) let fly with a few choice tweets of his own, including this initial reaction:
History shall record that you are not only the stupidest, most incompetent president ever, but also the cruelest and pettiest. #Shamepic.twitter.com/8R4jVOIYmd
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) July 26, 2017
The Democratic National Committee immediately launched an online petition to reverse the ban, with a personal note from DNC treasurer Bill Derrough, for whom the issue hit particularly close to home.
"I went to college on a Navy ROTC scholarship, but because of the ban on gays serving in the military, in my senior year I was unable to continue and receive my commission as a U.S. Naval officer and fulfill my dream of serving my country," he wrote in an email. "We have come a long way since then, and, thanks to President Obama, hundreds of thousands of LGBTQ Americans have finally been able to proudly, openly serve in our armed forces.
"But today, Donald Trump turned back the clock and will ban transgender people from serving in the military. He must reverse course—join me and sign your name if you agree."