The Trump administration may be considering limiting the legal definition of gender — for federal Title IX purposes — to the biological gender with which one is born, according to a memo draft obtained by The New York Times, as Reuters and other outlets are reporting.
During the Obama administration’s time, officials broadened the legal concept of gender to allow people to choose the sex they identified with — rather than the gender they were born with, for the most part.
The action would be “the most drastic move yet in a government-wide effort to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law,” The Times article noted.
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The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reportedly says in the memo that the U.S. government needs to adopt a “uniformed” definition of gender “on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable,” according to NBC News.
“We have a lot of different concepts right now. They have a lot of different things happening with respect to transgender right now,” President Donald Trump said Monday amid the predictable outpouring of anger on social media. There was also a protest in front of the White House.
Asked about a campaign promise to protect the LGBTQ community, Trump emphasized, “I’m protecting everybody. I want to protect our country,” reported NBC News.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) October 22, 2018
Many health professionals are concerned about the rise of transgenderism, particularly among children.
“There are permanent effects on children when you treat them for transgenderism,” Dr. Quentin Van Meter, a pediatric endocrinologist and vice president of the American College of Pediatricians (ACPEDS), recently told host Laura Ingraham of “The Laura Ingraham Show.”
He added, “You are either born a girl or boy, period. This transgender concept is simply a social and cultural feeling.”
The Trump administration is responsible for the well-being of all Americans.
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“Sex means a person’s status as male or female based on immutable biological traits identifiable by or before birth,” the HHS memo reportedly notes.
“The sex listed on a person’s birth certificate, as originally issued, shall constitute definitive proof of a person’s sex unless rebutted by reliable genetic evidence.”
Politicians eager to attach themselves to the issue commented via social media.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted on Monday, “@realDonaldTrump is trying to roll back major civil rights protections for transgender people. As hard as he tries to stir up hate and divide us, we’ll fight back 10 times harder. 1.4 million transgender Americans #WontBeErased.”
.@realDonaldTrump is trying to roll back major civil rights protections for transgender people. As hard as he tries to stir up hate and divide us, we’ll fight back 10 times harder. 1.4 million transgender Americans #WontBeErased. https://t.co/bNr0JUFiV2
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) October 22, 2018
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who is currently running for attorney general in his home state, tweeted, “Trump’s strategy all along has been to divide us. We must stand together against this bigotry and protect the dignity, respect, and rights of trans people and all Americans.”
Trump's strategy all along has been to divide us. We must stand together against this bigotry and protect the dignity, respect, and rights of trans people and all Americans. https://t.co/l9QhZh1Scn
— Keith Ellison (@keithellison) October 21, 2018
Activists in the LGBTQ community began using the hashtag “#WontBeErased” to condemn the memo.
“Make no mistake, trans people are under direct attack from the Trump administration — but we #WontBeErased. We’re here. You can’t define us out of existence,” wrote the National Center for Transgender Equality, noted NBC News.
“Transgender folks: You are valid. You matter. You are loved. We will not stop fighting for your rights and you #WontBeErased by this heartless administration. #TransRightsAreHumanRights,” wrote Lambda Legal, a national legal organization advocating for LGBTQ rights.
The Trump Administration “Eyes Defining Transgender Out of Existence,” at a moment when transgender Americans face high levels of discrimination and violence. Outrageous and wrong to lessen protections and attempt to deny equal humanity: https://t.co/KsWxnvQpPG
— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) October 21, 2018
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