Gorka Touts Transgender Soldier Ban, Slams ‘Obama-Era Social Engineering’

Start your day with TPM.
Sign up for the Morning Memo newsletter

White House aide Sebastian Gorka said Thursday that President Donald Trump had announced his intention to ban all transgender individuals from the U.S. military because the military is “not there to reflect America” or “be socially engineered.”

And, despite the fact that the U.S. military is an all-volunteer force, Gorka said Trump’s decision — made “out of the warmth of his consideration of this population” — was a response to what he characterized as an attempt “to try and force them into the hierarchical military environment where they are under the utmost pressure to kill or be killed.”

In an interview with BBC Radio 4 Today, Gorka was asked, in reference to Trump: “How can it be the case that he is speaking for the whole military if he is speaking out against one section of the military?”

“The military is not a microcosm of civilian society,” Gorka responded. “They are not there to reflect America. They are there to kill people and blow stuff up, they are not there to be social engineered.”

“We want people who are transgender to live happy lives,” he continued. “But we want unit cohesion and we want combat effectiveness. There are leading studies from the medical establishment, for example, that state that the transgender community has a 40 percent suicide attempt rate. That is a tragedy. We need to help those people, we don’t need to try and force them into the hierarchical military environment where they are under the utmost pressure to kill or be killed, and that is why the President is doing this — out of the warmth of his consideration of this population.

“It probably doesn’t feel like warmth from the transgender perspective,” a BBC presenter asked.

“Well, we’re not here to represent one part of America,” Gorka said. “We are here to represent all of America and protect Americans.” (Listen at 6:32 here.)

Gorka elaborated on Twitter, calling the acknowledgement of transgender servicemembers “Obama-era social engineering.”

Gorka’s reasoning adds to multiple justifications provided by the White House for Trump’s abrupt announcement of the ban — for which the Pentagon was apparently not at all prepared to comment, and which earned the bipartisan criticism from Congress.

In announcing the ban on Twitter Wednesday, Trump said that the military “cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”

Later that day, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at a press briefing that the ban was “about military readiness, this was about unit cohesion, this was about resources within the military.”

Gorka’s comments drew criticism from, among many others, Retired U.S. Navy Rear Adm. and CNN analyst John Kirby. In a series of tweets, he said Gorka, who served at one point in the British army reserves, had mischaracterized the U.S. military.

Latest Livewire

Notable Replies

  1. “The military is not a microcosm of civilian society,” Gorka responded. “They are not there to reflect America. They are there to kill people and blow stuff up, they are not there to be social engineered.”

    So sick of these testosterone-fueled assholes.

  2. Dr. Gorka’s Participation Trophy doctorate was apparently not accompanied by any actual education.

  3. Gorka said Trump’s decision — made “out of the warmth of his consideration of this population”

    uh-huh

    — was a response to what he characterized as an attempt “to try and force them into the hierarchical military environment where they are under the utmost pressure to kill or be killed.”

    “The military is not a microcosm of civilian society,” Gorka responded. “They are not there to reflect America. They are there to kill people and blow stuff up, they are not there to be social engineered.”

    okey

  4. Ladies and gentlemen, your new Chief of Staff! And Secretary of State. And publisher of the Enquirer.

Continue the discussion at forums.talkingpointsmemo.com

80 more replies

Participants

Avatar for lestatdelc Avatar for austin_dave Avatar for feathered_head Avatar for marlowe Avatar for headhunter212 Avatar for theod Avatar for krusher Avatar for inversion Avatar for sniffit Avatar for sanni Avatar for martinstett Avatar for greylady Avatar for twowolves Avatar for pshah Avatar for wagonmound Avatar for tena Avatar for clauscph Avatar for jonnygee Avatar for tiowally Avatar for natasbob Avatar for coprophagoussmile Avatar for outsidertrading618 Avatar for edgewise Avatar for bsankr

Continue Discussion
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: