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As the final months of his seemingly interminable term in office wind down, President Obama continues to pursue his campaign promise to “fundamentally transform America” in ways that seemed inconceivable when he was first elected in 2008, however it may well be the fault of the voters who neglected to ask the obvious follow-up questions: Transform from what? To what? And… why?

Had candidate Obama been honest about his intentions at the time, many voters might have stopped and considered whether his vision of the transformed America matched their own.

The president is focusing like a laser on his legacy – and the November election, as he lights the White House in the rainbow colors of the LGBT movement, names a gay bar in New York City as a national monument complete with federally funded National Park Service personnel, a temporary ranger station, a visitor center and exhibits, and welcomes Eric Fanning, a career bureaucrat with no military experience, as the first openly gay leader of a military branch as the Secretary of the Army.

And now, the Pentagon has announced it will end its ban on transgender troops as of July 1, just in time for the Fourth of July celebration of the nation’s founding.

While the ban affects a mere fraction of the 1.3 active duty military at the moment – less than 16,000 transgenders, ramifications in terms of effectiveness, readiness, and morale among units remains a concern among top brass, the direction has come down from the White House, and will not be countermanded by anyone with actual military experience.

Each of the four branches of the military will have a year to implement the policies regarding recruiting, housing, bathroom usage, training, and uniforms.

Of special concern is the increased cost of medical care, including behavioral health treatment, cross-hormone therapy, voice therapy, cosmetic or gender reassignment surgery and other treatments at a time when veterans are subjected to lengthy delays in receiving even basic care.

The Human Rights Campaign issued a press release praising the move. “This historic announcement will strengthen our military and our nation… we will now be able to recruit and retain the very best candidates.”

That may be news to the millions of veterans and active duty servicemen and servicewomen who believed, apparently erroneously in the opinion of the Obama administration, that they already were the best of the best.

 

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