Donald Trump and the LGBT community
With Donald Trump having visited the UK is the past week I thought it would be fitting to look at the most powerful man in the world and how his election has impacted members of the LGBT community in the US and around the world. During his election campaign during 2016 he claimed to be a friend of the LGBT community, but polling shows that the LGBT voters did not support the man or what he stood for. Donald Trump leads the Republican Party in the US, the party that has done as much as it possibly can to block and frustrate the progress of the gay rights movement over the last 30 years.
They say you can tell a lot about a man based on the people they choose to surround themselves with and call friends. The people that Donald Trump has elevate into the White House are no friends of our community. During his first year in office Trump brought Steven Bannon, the alt right executive chairmen of Breitbart News, a propaganda fuelled news source in as White House Chief Strategist. This Online ‘news source has published articles such as ‘Isis is a Gay Death Cult’ and ‘Kids Raised By Same-Sex Couples Twice As Likely To Be Depressed, Fat Adults’.
During a Special Election in December 2017 for the Alabama Senate Seat Donald Trump gave his support to candidate Roy Moore. Moore is a man who during his political career has attempted to make homosexuality illegal and claimed that gay sex was as perverted as bestiality. It is fortunate that Roy Moore did not win this particular election after a number of women came out to accuse the would be politician of sexual assault when they were under the age of consent…..
It is of course not just who Donald Trump chooses to call friends that make him a threat to the LGBT Community but also his actions in office. In March 2017 Donald Trump signed an executive order to ban transgender people from serving in the military. This is in stark contrast to former President Barack Obama who overturned the hated ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy from the Clinton administration that essentially banned people from being openly gay in the military. Donald Trump claims that banning trans people from the military is backed up by research and at the request of members of the army. Oddly he could not find any military officials to back him up on his claim.
On the International stage the Trump administration has also proven that it does not support the LGBT community. During a meeting of the United Nations in October last year the delegation from the United States voted against a resolution to condemn the use of the death penalty for homosexuality. The Trump administration claimed they were concerned about the broader implications of voting in favour of a resolution that condemned the death penalty. The truth is evident, the United States has turned its back on promoting human rights and defending the LGBT community.
There is a real potential that the United States will take massive steps back under the Trump regime, Trump is able to select members of for the United States Supreme Court. His first pick last year was Neil Gorsuch, a judge who has previously contested that trans prison inmates do not have a constitutional right to seek hormone treatment. His second pick, Brett Kavanaugh is potentially even more scary as he could tip the balance of the Supreme Court against LGBT equality for years to come. This is a man who believes in allowing discrimination against LGBT people when providing goods and services and may vote against LGBT people’s right to marry.
Whilst Donald Trump can wave a rainbow flag upside down all he wants and claim to be a friend of the LGBT community his actions speak far louder than his often-clumsy words. This President proves time and time again that he is not a supporter of our community and I look forward to the day when there is a President in the Oval Office who once again considers the LGBT community.
Daniel Carter for Canal St Online