Deb Haaland flies trans flag to protest Supreme Court ruling
Congresswoman Deb Haaland has hung a transgender flag outside her office in Washington, DC, to protest the Supreme Court’s decision on transgender people serving in the military.
The Democratic representative of New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District tweeted a photo of the flag on Tuesday (January 22), writing: “The trans flag is displayed proudly outside my office door today.”
Haaland, one of the first Native American congresswomen elected in November, added “#ProtectTransTroops” in reference to the Supreme Court’s order issued on Tuesday, allowing President Donald Trump to ban trans people from the military.
The justices voted by 5-4 to overturn a stay issued by lower courts in states where the government faces legal challenges over the ban, which proposes to stop “transgender persons who require or have undergone gender transition” from serving.
As CNN reported, exceptions to the ban would include trans soldiers already serving who do not undergo confirmation surgery and remain deployable, those who completed their hormone treatment or confirmation surgery more than three years ago, and those who have yet to receive a gender dysphoria diagnosis who are willing to serve “in their birth sex.”
Trans service members would also still be allowed to serve and access treatment if they received a gender dysphoria diagnosis before the effective date of the policy.
— Congresswoman Deb Haaland (@RepDebHaaland) January 23, 2019
Deb Haaland praised for hanging trans flag
Congresswoman Haaland’s display of support for trans rights won her praise.
One person tweeted: “Thank you. It means so much to have highly visible leaders show support for the trans community, especially on awful days like this.”
Another said: “Thank you for standing up for all Americans,” while a different user wrote: “Thank you. Regardless of a person’s gender preference they have rights. We must protect their rights.”
“Representative Haaland, thank you for representing all New Mexicans!”
Others were delighted that Haaland was representing their state, like the commenter who tweeted: “There’s a reason why you’re elected as a representative for NM #istanyoudeb ❤️.”
Another wrote: “Representative Haaland, thank you for representing all New Mexicans!” while a different person said: “Thank you, @RepDebHaaland! Your support means so much.
“Proud to have you representing NM.”
One person tweeted: “Your support of transgender Americans and your representation of transgender New Mexicans is greatly appreciated. But of no surprise, it reflects your long-held values.”
Political responses to Supreme Court’s decision to allow Trump’s trans ban
On the same day Haaland hung the flag, New York senator and presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand said she planned to introduce legislation which would ensure trans people could join the military, as The Hill reported.
In a statement, Gillibrand said that trans servicepeople “are willing to die for this country, they make extraordinary sacrifices for our freedom, and they are unafraid to fight for our most sacred values as Americans.”
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Calling the proposed ban a “hateful policy,” she added that “banning them from military service is a rebuke of their patriotism.”
Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said: “Donald Trump’s ban on trans Americans serving in our nation’s military was purpose-built to humiliate brave men and women seeking to serve their country.
“Deeply concerning that the Supreme Court is allowing his ban to proceed for now.”
Senator Kamala Harris, one of the Democratic frontrunners hoping to challenge Trump for president in 2020, said: “Transgender military members have the courage to serve our country and deserve to do so. We have to fight back to reverse this.”