From Trump’s ban on transgender military service to his failure to acknowledge Pride Month, his administration now has a long anti-LGBTQ record.
President Donald Trump said he was a different kind of Republican. As someone from liberal New York, he signaled that he would be the person to finally move his political party on LGBTQ issues. He held up a Pride flag at a campaign event, and he said the key acronym (“L, G, B, T … Q”) at the 2016 Republican convention.
But Trump’s administration, based on its first year, has been anything but LGBTQ-friendly.
“He campaigned saying that he would be a good friend to LGBT people,” James Esseks, director of the ACLU’s LGBT and HIV Project, told me. “Actions speak far louder than words. And what he’s done has been a wreck.”
In its first year, the Trump administration has tried to reinstate a ban on transgender people in the military. It has nominated multiple people to the courts and elsewhere who have anti-LGBTQ records. It has directed its army of federal lawyers to take the anti-LGBTQ side in court cases. And it has done some extraordinarily petty things, like refusing to recognize Pride Month.
Together, it all marks a significant shift from President Barack Obama’s administration. In the runup to his 2012 reelection, Obama became the first sitting president to support same-sex marriage. His administration interpreted civil rights law to protect trans people where other existing laws failed to. It reversed “don’t ask, don’t tell” — which banned gay people from serving openly in the military — and began to reverse a similar ban on open trans service members. In court cases in which it chimed in, the Obama administration was a reliable ally of LGBTQ rights causes. And it took on smaller yet still symbolic causes, Read More Here