Hagel: Military's transgender policy 'continually should be reviewed'
May 11th, 2014
12:51 PM ET
5 months ago

Hagel: Military's transgender policy 'continually should be reviewed'

Updated 1:37 p.m. ET, 5/11/2014

(CNN) - Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Sunday that he's open to a review of the U.S. military's policy prohibiting transgender individuals from serving.

"I do think it continually should be reviewed," Hagel told ABC's Martha Raddatz.

"I'm open to those assessments, because again, I go back to the bottom line: Every qualified American who wants to serve our country should have an opportunity, if they fit the qualifications and can do it," he said.

President Barack Obama signed a bill repealing the U.S. military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy in late 2010 setting off a transition process to allow gays and lesbians to serve. But transgender individuals are still banned from serving.

"The issue of transgender is bit more complicated because it has a medical component to it," Hagel said. "These issues require medical attention. Austere locations where we put our men and women in many cases don't always provide that kind of opportunity."

A report this year from a commission co-chaired by former U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders found no "compelling medical rationale" for the Pentagon's ban on transgender military service.


Filed under: Chuck Hagel
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. waitaminute

    They should be prepared for our enemies to capture and display the freaks to show that they are fighting mutant, godless, animals.

    May 11, 2014 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  2. Chuck

    These dangerous experiments with our most valuable treasure "US Military"
    they are already in decline

    May 11, 2014 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  3. Robin

    I am appalled at the comments here. On all of your behalfs, however, I will assume it is because you know little to nothing about transgendered individuals. Transgender people DO know who they are. They know they are male when their genitalia tells them they are female or vice versa. A man dressed as a woman is probably a cross dresser/frans sexual someone who is comfortable with their gender, but likes to dress in the other genders clothing. Those people should be using their own gender's restrooms.
    My daughter is transgender. It was an easier transition for her to make than for me. She knew; I did not. She had gender surgery a couple of years ago. I met another transgender person who had served in the military for years and was just getting out and ready to undergo surgery as well. She was well adjusted, honest, and someone any body would have liked and been more than willing to serve with.
    Just try not to have opinions about something you don't really know about. I know it sounds scary (and actually, it is for the transgender person.) They are people with the same personalities and desires as anyone. They can and should serve in the military.

    May 11, 2014 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  4. Gt

    Obama has taken this country to the lowest morel decay imaginable

    May 11, 2014 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  5. me

    Wahahahahaha....will they shower with AND women. I am in !!!

    May 11, 2014 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  6. Tiffany82

    I've seen a LOT of really ignorant comments on here. Transgender people are still people and are still capable of serving and serving well.

    May 11, 2014 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  7. Scott

    Well gee, chuck, right now if you aren't confused about what body have, you can serve. That's called a qualification. Height and weight are also qualifications. You gonna change those too?

    May 11, 2014 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  8. geggyg

    Aust allows transgenders to serve in the military , we even have a high ranking offer serving a Lieutenant Colonel , it hasn't destroyed our military .

    May 11, 2014 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  9. Bruceben9

    I am very glad to be in the fall of my life. The world is insane.

    May 11, 2014 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  10. S. B. Stein

    It is an all volunteer military. I say that those that want to serve and meet the requirements should have a role to play.

    May 11, 2014 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  11. ghost

    My question is how can anyone who has ever been discriminated against be for doing the same to someone else. I would think you would want this crappppp to end all together. WAKEUP PEOPLEEEEEEEE!

    May 12, 2014 07:56 am at 7:56 am |
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