UPDATED: Caitlyn Jenner slammed President Donald Trump following his ban of transgender men and women from serving in the military.
Jenner issued a statement addressing her stance against his policy. “I believe every American should be outraged by the disrespect shown to those people wearing our country’s uniform. Furthermore, this half-baked idea puts all of our service members in harm’s way. Does President Trump intend to just pull 15,000 people out of every critical position to which they are currently assigned? That would disrupt core military missions around the world and needlessly endanger our troops.
She continued, “Over the past two years I have met the most inspiring trans people, and I can testify to the trans community’s incredible resilience and perseverance in the face of enormous discrimination and hate. We are strong, we are beautiful, and we will win. The President must ask himself which side of history he will be on — and reverse his position immediately.”
Although Jenner voted for Trump, she adamantly expressed her devastation regarding the ban. “My father, William Jenner, landed on Omaha Beach in WWII, and his bravery and service to his country has always inspired me and helped make me the person I am today. America’s 15,000 trans service members and 134,000 veterans are much braver than you, Mr. Trump; my allegiance is with them and our country, not you.”
Read her full statement here.
Jenner initially responded to Trump on Twitter. “There are 15,000 patriotic transgender Americans in the U.S. military fighting for all of us. What happened to your promise to fight for them?” she asked in response to Trump’s June 2016 tweet where he promised the LGBT community, “I will fight for you while Hillary brings in more people that will threaten your freedoms and beliefs.”
Jenner’s response came hours after the announcement. The transgender activist’s name was trending on Twitter following her initial silence.
Though Jenner is a longtime Republican, this is not the first time she has spoken out against decisions made by the Trump administration. In February, she called the choice to revoke guidelines on transgender use of bathrooms in public schools a “disaster.”
A number of celebrities have expressed disdain for this new ban. Laverne Cox issued a statement saying, “This latest reversal of another Obama administration policy continues to send the message to trans Americans that our lives, our safety, and service are less valuable and unwanted in this country, the country I love and hold so dear. Let’s all come together and send the message to trans Americans that despite what this president and administration proclaims that trans lives, safety, and service are valuable, that they matter.”