By Blue Bronc, a Trail Mix Contributor
The one thing a transgender soldier, airman, sailor or Marine did not want to happen is to be discovered as transgender. Before June 30, 2016, if you were found out you faced being tossed out of the military. That was bad, you did not want to leave except at the end of your enlistment. If you had a nasty commander you might end up with an “Other Than Honorable” discharge, that made being discharged even worse.
You spent your entire military service in a deep lie. Afraid of being found out. If you lived off base you had a closet to hide in when off duty. But, you probably would not invite anyone over. If you lived in a barracks you were stuck unless you had a separate room. But, you were always afraid of inspections which might find panties in your locker. You were always looking over your shoulder if you went to clubs or on a date.
Today, July 1, 2016, life has changed for those in the military who are transgender. Think back over the sequence of changes which have hit the Pentagon during the last years. Gays and Lesbians, okay to serve. Women allowed in combat MOS. Transgender service men and women allowed to serve openly. Read the last two sentences again.
Taught to kill in basic training and then kill in other ways in more training. That is every soldier’s life. It does not matter if you wear a skirt or coat and tie off duty you learn how to pull the trigger on duty. In America that has been going on since the beginning of the Revolutionary War. Many transgender people have served honorably and many of died fighting for our country.
A question is asked about why enlist in an organization which you know does not want you? For some, they have a deep sense of patriotism, a sense of duty. Many see military service as a way to see the world. More than a handful see it as a way of proving to themselves, and others, that they are man enough or strong enough or tough enough, and not feminine (denial of being transgender). And, during wartime, combat is a way to commit suicide covered in glory and a flag.
Today I am so happy for so many transgender people in uniform. They no longer need to hide who they are.
Yes there will be push back by some. But, it is the military and the orders are issued to treat trans soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines the same as every other soldier, sailor, airman and Marine. You do not disobey legal orders in the military.
For so long this day was a dream. A dream that I expected would never come true. Now, this day is so happy. A deep relief has come over me as it has many others. I know of others who cannot know of this day, they are dead. The cause does not matter anymore.
More Posts By Blue Bronc