Happy birthday, Mr President: 33 times Trump was anti-LGBT this past year
Donald Trump celebrates his birthday on Friday, June 14, four years after he announced that he was running to be the 45th US president.
Trump turns 73 today, and – as usual – his birthday falls during Pride month.
On May 31, the president tweeted, “As we celebrate LGBT Pride Month and recognise the outstanding contributions LGBT people have made to our great Nation, let us also stand in solidarity with the many LGBT people who live in dozens of countries worldwide that punish, imprison, or even execute individuals….
“….on the basis of their sexual orientation. My Administration has launched a global campaign to decriminalise homosexuality and invite all nations to join us in this effort!”
Trump’s also been selling “LGBTQ for Trump” Pride month T-shirts.
So, what has the Trump administration’s impact been on the LGBT+ community since Trump’s last birthday?
1. July 9, 2018
Trump picks Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court vacancy, in a move that was lamented by LGBT groups who said it would end the Supreme Court’s pro-LGBT rights majority.
2. July 20, 2018
The Trump administration erases LGBT+ people from a government website – again.
3. July 30, 2018
Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions announces the creation of a new “religious freedom task force.” Activists feared it would be used to “license discrimination against LGBTQ people in the public square.”
4. October 1, 2018
Unmarried same-sex partners of UN employees living in the US would no longer be granted visas, Trump’s administration announced. This meant same-sex couples would be forced to marry – which could endanger lives, given it’s still illegal to be gay in around 69 countries.
5. October 21, 2018
Trump’s administration considers implementing a new policy that would change the legal definition of gender to one’s sex assigned at birth, potentially removing discrimination protections for around 1.4 million transgender Americans who don’t identify as the gender they were assigned at birth.
6. October 24, 2018
It should be legal to for businesses to discriminate against trans employees, Trump’s Department of Justice argues in a brief to the Supreme Court.
7. October 25, 2018
US officials at the UN push for rewriting collective statements to remove language that’s inclusive of trans people, like changing “gender-based violence” to “violence against women.” This is apparently part of the Trump administration’s campaign to legally erase trans people.
8. November 23, 2018
Trump asks the Supreme Court to fast-track its review of his proposal to ban trans people from serving in the US military.
9. November 30, 2018
Trump strips the requirement for the US to have LGBT+ rights protections from a trade deal with Canada and Mexico. It means that the US doesn’t have to proactively combat anti-LGBT+ discrimination in order to be part of the trade deal.
10. December 9, 2018
The Trump administration shut down an HIV research facility in Montana and stopped research into a potential HIV cure, because it objected to scientists’ use of aborted fetal tissue in the research. Gay and bisexual men account for roughly two-thirds of new HIV diagnoses in the US.
11. December 17, 2019
Trump announces anti-LGBT Michael Mulvaney will be his new acting chief of staff.
Mulvaney has a history of anti-LGBT legislation and statements, including saying that encouraging countries to drop homophobic policies is “religious persecution.”
12. December 19, 2018
Two US Air Force members are forced to leave the military after testing positive for HIV. They file a lawsuit alleging discrimination.
13. December 21, 2018
Trump’s Department of Justice issues a statement supporting a Christian student group in a case against the University of Iowa. The Christian student group was indirectly barring LGBT+ people from joining, and the judge later ruled that they were allowed to ban gay students from their group.
14. January 24, 2019
Trump allows foster agencies in South Carolina to reject LGBT+ people.
15. January 28, 2019
At the White House, Trump held a meeting with a far-right group who condemned transgender people and same-sex marriage.
16. February 7, 2019
At the annual National Prayer Breakfast, Trump applauds Karen Pence, wife of the vice president, for deciding to return to teaching at an anti-LGBT+ school.
17. February 8, 2019
The next day, Trump confirms plans to give funds to faith-based adoption groups in the 2020 budget. Faith-based adoption groups use “religious exemption” to deny LGBT+ people the right to adopt a child.
18. February 14, 2019
Trump’s pick for attorney general, William Barr, is confirmed. LGBT+ activists are outraged, fearing that Barr will continue the anti-LGBT policy stances pursued within the DOJ under former attorney general Jeff Sessions.
19. March 12, 2019
In a late-night announcement, the Trump administration says it’s decided to ban trans service members from openly serving in the country’s armed forces according to their gender identity. In a month’s time, the military must begin discharging trans members.
20. March 19, 2019
Jair Bolsonaro, the anti-LGBT president of Brazil, visits Trump at the White House. President Trump congratulated Bolsonaro on his “tremendous” election victory, and said he expects they will work well together as they “have many views that are similar.”
21. March 25, 2019
12 LGBT+ migrants being detained in New Mexico allege abuse by Tump administration ICE officials.
22. April 5, 2019
Trump congratulates Brian Hagedorn, a anti-LGBT Republican, on being elected to the Wisconsin supreme court.
23. April 12, 2019
Trump’s ban on trans people in the military comes into effect, jeopardising the livelihoods of thousands.
24. May 2, 2019
A new “freedom to discriminate” healthcare order is issued by Trump, which grants healthcare workers the right to discriminate against LGBT+ people based on their religious beliefs. This means LGBT+ people can be denied life-saving healthcare.
25. May 2, 2019
Pence and Trump host anti-gay preacher Franklin Graham at a White House reception.
Graham, who called for Pete Buttigieg to “repent” his sexuality, posed for photos with Pence.
26. May 13, 2019
President Trump says he “opposes the Equality Act,” which would ensure LGBT+ people can’t be discriminated against in areas including public accommodations and facilities, education, federal funding, employment, housing, credit, and the jury system.
27. May 22, 2019
A new Trump rule will allow homeless shelters in the US to reject trans homeless people. The proposed new rules will make it legal to discriminate against homeless trans people based on “religious beliefs.”
28. May 24, 2019
The Trump administration announces plans for a new policy allowing adoption agencies to reject LGBT+ couples. A week later, the American Civil Liberties Union sued Trump over his reported plan to let adoption and foster agencies reject same-sex couples.
29. May 24, 2019
Trump proposes to eliminate trans healthcare protections.
30. May 27, 2019
Trump reportedly plans to install Ken Cuccinelli — the former Virginia attorney general who tried to outlaw consensual anal and oral sex — as director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
31. June 5, 2019
In an interview with Piers Morgan, Trump attempted to justify his decision to ban trans people from serving in the military by categorising trans people as drug users.
“They take massive amounts of drugs, they have to. And you’re not allowed to take drugs, you know, in the military you’re not allowed to take any drugs, take an aspirin,” Trump said.
32. June 7, 2019
Trump bans US embassies from flying rainbow flags during Pride month.
33. June 12, 2019
Trump fails to mention the third anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting, which killed 49 LGBT+ people.
On the day of the shooting in 2016, Trump was criticised for tweeting, “Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism.”