Trump rules out talks with NKorea; Mattis says still room for


"Thousands of current service members are transgender, and many have been serving openly, courageously and successfully in the United States military for more than a year - not to mention the previous decades when many were forced to serve in silence", he added. However, this isn't a win.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration in response to the transgender ban.

As part of the implementation plan, the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, shall determine how to address transgender individuals now serving in the United States military.

In section 1 (b), the President requests that both Mattis and the Department of Homeland Security complete a thorough study to determine whether "terminating that policy [allowing trans folk to serve in the military] and practice would not have the negative effects", which some have pointed out may follow from removing people from active duty. It directed Mattis to study the issue and determine how to implement Trump's direction.

According to USA Today, Mattis is allowing now serving transgender troops to stay in the military until he receives the results of a study.

How many transgender service members are in the military? The Defense Department has acknowledged "receiv [ing] formal guidance from the White House in reference to transgender personnel serving in the military", according to Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White.

The overall basis for the president's directive was "national security considerations", according to a senior White House official. However, his announcement is more complicated than it may seem, as he has not clarified whether the ban is only temporarily on hold, or permanently finished.

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The three joined the Washington, D.C. -based Human Rights Campaign and the Gender Justice League, a Washington state transgender rights group, in suing the government in U.S. District Court in Seattle on Monday.

"No", Mattis told reporters when he was asked about Trump?s tweet in this regard during a welcome ceremony for his South Korean counterpart at the Pentagon.

The Rand study looked at the effects of integration efforts of foreign militaries and determined "little or no impact on unit cohesion, operational effectiveness, or readiness".

Regardless of one's views on transgender people, most would agree this ban is unnecessary. It continued, "Mattis did not reverse Trump or defy him on the broader ban against new recruits who are transgender people".

"It's not a surprise that there is considerable bipartisan concern about what's going on because the White House admitted that the original tweets were for an invalidly political objective, which is why you had eight senators from the Republican Party speak out", said Aaron Belkin, director of the Palm Center, which conducts research on sexual minorities in the military.

That doesn't mean the confusion is over, as reports have come out that Mattis has enacted a freeze on the policy so that transgender soldiers can continue to serve pending a "study by experts."