SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The transgender and LGBTQ+ community are reacting to President Joe Biden’s executive order to overturn the transgender military ban.
News 3 spoke with a veteran who said this is one step closer towards equality for all who serve.
“Transgender Americans have been serving in the armed forces since the very beginning of the United States,” Army veteran, Carla Moore said.
Moore says transgender men and women have served in hiding for many years. She served in the Army for 12 years and came out as transgender three years ago.
“I am transgender but that is not all of who I am. I’m also a very patriotic American. I’m just a person like anybody else,” Moore said.
Moore knew at five years old that she didn’t feel comfortable being a boy but to avoid being excluded she buried it deep so nobody would know. Many know that same feeling all too well.
On Monday, President Biden signed an executive order lifting the transgender military ban allowing any transgender person to serve openly. The ban was put in place in 2017 by former President Donald Trump.
“What I’m doing is enabling all qualified Americans to serve their country in uniform,” Biden said.
The order immediately bars service members from being discharged or denied reenlistment for their gender identity.
“I respect President Biden’s compassion. I think that he just recognizes that people are people and when you deny anybody the right to be who they are in the military you actually do deny a lot of talent to the military,” Moore said.
Dusty Church with the First City Pride Center is a strong advocate for the trans community who says many will now get the chance to be employed in a profession they couldn’t apply to for the last four years.
“This was a big deal. This is something that has been very painful for members of our community and it’s been long overdue,” Church said.
Moore is hopeful that Congress will consider passing stronger legislation to make this executive order law as the next administration can put the ban back in place.