Transgenderism is a condition in which a person’s identity is not the same as his or her birth sex. In an ideal world, one’s confirmed sex does not correspond to one’s identity. In some cases, transgender people may seek medical treatment to help them transition from one gender to the next, a condition known as transsexuality. However, not everyone with a transgender condition will be able to receive treatment due to a variety of factors such as medical or financial constraints. According to Theilen (331), most transgendered people face discrimination at various stages of their lives. Some people face discrimination at work, in schools, in healthcare, and in social situations. This paper discusses whether banning of transgenders from the military by Trump is ethical from the egoist perspective. Also, it shades light on whether the act contributes to discrimination of transgenders or not.
Transgender rights is an issue which has been in the limelight in the current days. The main contributor to the emerging issue of transgender was the US president Donald Trump who elevated the problem by trying to ban people with the condition from the military. This act has struck debate in public on whether the act is ethical or not. According to NY TIMES, the law is set to prevent transgenders from serving in the military, by establishing a legal standard of whether they would be able to deploy to war zones or for other lengthy military missions. The law is based on the argument of the cost incurred by the military on healthcare and disruption. From the egoist view, the ban can be ethical for various reasons.
Egoism in a real sense supports the idea of a person acting in a way to promote his/her self -interest. Also, it is based on what one ought to do rather than what one does. From this perspective, the act of Trump banning transgenders from the military is attached to being of self- interest. The decision shows how Trump takes charge of the activities and operations of the military and the country as well to the extent of burdening himself with the responsibilities of the outcomes of the state. The number of the transgenders serving in the military currently is estimated to be more than 15,000. According to Theilen (339), human rights protect the people belonging to minority groups like transgenders, from being discriminated. However, the ban comes with self- interest reasons, which from the perspective it is seen to be ethical.
First, the ban is based on the reason that the cost incurred on transgender officers in the military is tremendous. According to PBS, the state spends anywhere between 2.4 to 2.8 million dollars on the medical procedures related to transgenders. Therefore, the military looks in the financial aspect in the first place. Ideally, cutting down of cost is related to saving money from unbeneficial activities to invest in a different area which is more helpful or productive. However, egoism is what someone is, something which explains the Trump’s career journey which has been firmly attached to money. With his determination to create more wealth, he works hard to get more in his pockets. Thus, banning of people with a transgender condition from the military so as to cut down the cost of medical procedures on them is of self- interest and benefit.
Secondly, the disruption caused by the transgender people in the military is unbearable. According to one of the tweets of Trump, transgenders would cost military a lot when it comes to readiness to work. From Trump’s perspective, an army should not be disrupted in any way while on duty but instead should always be ready to carry out its responsibilities of serving and protecting the country. Due to health care needed by transgenders, disruption while on duty is more likely to be caused which may affect the smooth running and operations of the army (Kerrigan 500). The policy of do not ask, do not tell is more related to this act where Trump justifies his decision to ban transgender people from serving in the military. The ban shows the personality of Trump which is driven by egoism. Transgender people suffer from dysphoria, which is caused by conflicts of how a person was born with a specific gender and the identity sex, thus bring about emotional distress (Belkin 1090). As a result, depression may creep in. Also, anxiety may come across interfering with the officers’ capability to serve in the military thus disrupting the operations of the military. From Trump’s perspective, the military should be ready to operate and serve when summoned without being disrupted by internal or external factors. However, Trump made this decision to ban transgenders from the army on his self- interest, which is ethical when viewed from the egoism perspective.
Consequently, transgender people need medical attention for them to keep fit. Military force always carters for all medical expenses of the people serving in the military and a budget is always drawn annually. According to Belkin (1092), transgender people need to be cared for by all means. This may mean related transgender procedures to concur the condition and to make them fit to serve. However, due to personal interest, Trump states that the military medical expenses rise annually as a result of the presence of transgender people in the forces.
Transgender people are somehow undermined when it comes to carrying out their duties. This is because of the difference of identity gender and the birth sex conformed to them. In the military, the confusion of whether a person is a man or woman can cause the force duty allocation procedures. While the work of an army is defined right from the training step, the policy of do not ask, do not tell gives no room for exceptions when it comes to serving the country (Parco, David and Sarah 230). However, due to Trump being self-centered, only focusing on his gain, there is no freedom of serving in the military for transgender people something which makes the ban ethical from egoism perspective.
Removing transgenders from the military is a growth and self- preservation in the sense that he is preserving what the military once was and still is, by removing them, Trump is removing the self- doubt and fear from himself that these things may change. He is trying to prevent the shift of focus from what he may consider being important to issues that should not be brought up in the first place. The ban comes in to defend egoism rather than the human rights. The claim of cost and disruption is a poor argument since it is not supported by well- defined facts. The decision was solely made for self -interest rather than the facts about transgender people serving in the military.
Belkin, Aaron. “Caring for our transgender troops—the negligible cost of transition-related care.” New England Journal of Medicine 373.12 (2015): pp. 1089-1092.
Kerrigan, Matthew F. “Transgender discrimination in the military: The new don’t ask, don’t tell.” Psychology, Public Policy, and Law 18.3 (2012): p. 500.
Parco, James E., David A. Levy, and Sarah R. Spears. “Transgender military personnel in the post-DADT repeal era: A phenomenological study.” Armed Forces & Society 41.2 (2015): pp. 221-242.
Theilen, Jens T. “Depathologisation of Transgenderism and International Human Rights Law.” Human Rights Law Review14.2 (2014): pp. 327-342.