HOT FOR SCAPEGOAT, TRUMP BEDEVILS TRANSGENDER SOLDIERS
On Wednesday, alleged US President Donald Trump tried to bar transgender soldiers via Twitter.
Tweeting, of course, isn’t a prescribed method of setting policy. So this may not translate into real practice.
But just like when he pretended to relax rules about taxing churches, Trump employs a kind of sympathetic magic with these things.
If it just looks kind of like he’s done something, certain people will believe he has. And if they react accordingly, it’s almost like he really did it.
This is stupid, but it works. Case in point, religious hate groups dutifully responded with gushing displays of loyalty.
Family Research Council’s chief asshole Tony Perkins applauded like a seal. Says Perkins, “Troops shouldn’t have to endure hours of transgender sensitivity classes.”
Mind you, we ask these people to step on landmines for a living. But a one-hour course on not calling each other “tranny fag” is a bridge too far?
A nameless flack from the American Family Association declared: “A gender identity disorder is a mental disease.”
An engima: AFA hates gender dysphoria and calls it “a disease.” But it also hates gender reassignment, which is a treatment for gender dysphoria.
Ex-politician and preacher Gordon Klingenschmitt claimed Trump’s non-order “[ends] the threat to all women in the military.”
I’m still waiting for Klingenschmitt’s statement on rampant sexual assault in the armed forces…
But the Illinois Family Institute takes the cake. (Unless cake isn’t butch enough for them?) Their statement claimed that transgender people and allies “Offer children as sacrifices to Moloch.”
To which I say: Hey! Who’s been snitching about the Moloch sacrifices? That blood oath is supposed to be binding, assholes.
Of course, the people most affected by the Oval Office odium: transgender soldiers themselves. One National Guardsman told TIME he was “dejected and humiliated, to say the least.”
Another soldier, stationed in Korea (which, hey, might be important soon), posed, “If I’m protecting everyone, why is no one protecting me?“
In a refreshing move from the supposedly apolitical Church of Satan, Heather Height (the mother of a transgender child herself) knocked Trump on the church blog for “provoking venomous ignorance, fear, and hate.”
CoS doesn’t often employ phrases like “a better world,” so it’s nice to see engagement. One part of Height’s testimony bothers me though:
“In a different way than I used to, I get it. What our leaders say matters. Whether those leaders are artists and entertainers or government officials.”
Um, yeah, of course what the fucking president says matters. Who could possibly just now be realizing this?
Look, Trump’s polls are in the crapper. His administration is falling apart. Congress is like a boot on his car. He needs a scapegoat. Vulnerable enough get people’s blood pumping, but narrowly tailored enough to make blowback manageable.
(Also, someone he can attack solo, with minimal effort. Everything has to be as fuck up-proof as possible in this White House. They should probably even sand the sharp edges off of his phone…)
He’s skewering transgender soldiers because they’re a soft target. Few in number. Often ignored. A group he can count on most people not “getting it” about.
Politics isn’t some vague alternate reality that never touches us. But even a tub of mental Velveeta (it’s never as good as the real thing) like Trump can make you think so by just hitting people who are Not You.
I mean, hey, I’m not transgender. Nobody on Twitter calls me “degenerate, pervert, scumbag etc.”
(Well, okay, they do, because I’m a Satanist. But at least I borrowed that trouble for myself.)
So I’ve got the privilege™ of not having to worry about it. Even after I write this, I can go back to thinking about other things. This axe ain’t gonna fall on me.
Transgender soldiers aren’t so lucky. And the thing is, every time people like Trump do anything, it hits somebody.
Most of us aren’t that somebody. But that doesn’t mean it’s not happening.