ICYMI: anti-LGBTQ groups and activists lobbied for ban on transgender soldiers

NEW YORK – With President Trump’s announcement this morning to ban transgender Americans from openly serving in the United States military, the administration has now fed into the demands of anti-LGBTQ organizations including the Heritage Foundation, an organization that has worked tirelessly and for decades to effectively erase transgender Americans from the fabric of this nation.

In light of this development, the background information below takes a look at some of the anti-LGBTQ hate-groups and anti-transgender advocates who aggressively lobbied the Trump Administration for a ban on transgender service members and purge of transgender soldiers who are currently serving.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION: Anti-LGBTQ Hate Groups and Anti-Transgender Advocates behind the Push for the Reinstatement of the Transgender Military Ban

Tony Perkins – President of the Family Research Council (FRC)

Peter Sprigg – Senior Follow for Policy Studies at FRC

  • Wrote multiple issue briefs on the topic, arguing that inclusion would be both costly and detrimental.

Elain Donnelly – Founder of Center for Military Readiness

James Dobson – Founder of Focus on the Family

  • Sent a newsletter to his attentive followers, wherein he framed transgender inclusion as the latest “social experiment” that conservatives should oppose: “Let’s consider military personnel with what the American Psychiatric Association defines as a diagnosed mental disorder known as gender dysphoria (transgender). Such individuals are now recruited and retained and are entitled to a full range of medical and psychiatric services. They include counseling, cross-sex hormones, gender reassignment surgery, and social and legal transition to the desired gender.”

Liberty Counsel

  • Took the approach of backing the supposed “religious freedom” rights of soldiers who object to transgender inclusion.
  • Just last week, Liberty Counsel penned a letter to Georgia’s Fort Benning Army Base, insisting that “Biological sex is an immutable characteristic” and that transgender inclusions “requires Soldiers and civilians to affirm their agreement with numerous false ideas with fake “definitions” invented by LGBT radicals intent on normalizing behavior that is the result of gender confusion or a sexual fetish.”

Roger Severino (who was part of Heritage/Daily Signal)

  • In a 2016 commentary that was widely disseminated through conservative media outlets, Severino criticized the policy change as being “based on a radical new gender ideology.” He went on to claim that this change “dishonors” veterans.  
  • Currently holds a key position in the Trump administration’s Department of Health and Human Services.

American Family Association (AFA)

Heritage Foundation/Daily Signal

  • Thomas Spoehr, who holds the title of the Heritage Foundation’s director of the Center for National Defense, recently took to the organization’s in-house Daily Signal website to argue that allowing transgender service members is “a gamble” and that “the stakes are too high” to move forward with implementation. Mainstream outlets like The Hill and The Daily Beast have quoted Spoehr as an expert on this issue.

Conservative Action Project

  • A collection of high-profile anti-LGBTQ activists demanded that “Secretary Mattis should suspend and, upon further careful study, rescind Defense Department and military service directives permitting transgender individuals to serve.”

WND (formerly WorldNetDaily)


  • Ran an anti-trans commentary from Family Research Council’s resident military “expert” Jerry Boykin. Last July, Breitbart ran a similar commentary from the same Boykin, this one calling transgender acceptance in the military “a deadly distraction.