By Debbie Gregory.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) groups are raising pressure on President Trump’s nominee for Army secretary, and are vowing they will fight.
Advocacy groups have launched an effort on Capitol Hill to block President Trump’s new Army secretary nominee, Mark E. Green, saying his record of antagonism and hostility toward them is unacceptable.
Green, a retired Army officer, is a Tennessee state politician, having most recently served in the Tennessee state senate.
Green had a noteworthy Army career, having served as a special operations flight surgeon. He was the emergency physician during the operation that captured Saddam Hussein in 2003 and was the first person to interrogate Hussein following the capture.
Green has suggested that being transgender is a disease. He has also sponsored legislation in Tennessee that allows discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Trump “couldn’t have picked a worse nominee to pick a fight with Congress,” said David Stacy, government affairs director at the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). Officials with the HRC and the American Military Partners Association said in a joint statement that Green’s views are radical and outdated, and that they are rallying support against him.
Stephen Peters, the national press secretary for Human Rights Campaign, said he found it “appalling” that Green was selected, and found him to be an unacceptable choice. Green has “gone out of his way” to target LGBT people, he said.
In addition to fears about rolling back policies allowing LGBT troops to serve openly, Stacy said they are worried about the message of having an anti-LGBT leader will send down the chain of command.
“Nothing is more important than standing up for every single service member,” he said.
Green would replace former Army secretary Eric Fanning, who was appointed to the position by Obama in 2016 and became the first openly gay service secretary.
Tell us what you think? The next article will provide some background on Army Secretary Nominee Mark E. Green