Portland transgender veteran reacts to Trump's military ban stat - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland transgender veteran reacts to Trump's military ban statements

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Shannon Scott (KPTV) Shannon Scott (KPTV)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Shannon Scott will never forget her supervisor’s words in 2010 – threatening her to stop transitioning from male to female while still working in the U.S. military.
 
“He slid dishonorable discharge paperwork across the table to me and said, ‘If you don’t keep it quiet and keep it off the base, you’re gone,'" Scott told FOX 12 on Wednesday. 
 
Scott left the military shortly after and is now living her life as a woman in Portland. Last year, she was thrilled when Pentagon officials announced trans people could finally serve openly.
 
“Knowing that other people wouldn’t have to face that same trauma, I was overjoyed," Scott said. 
 
But Wednesday morning, waking up to Donald Trump’s tweets about transgender people no longer being allowed to serve in the military, Scott’s joy was wiped away.
 
“I was just really saddened more than anything,” she said. “And just disappointed. Especially in the military, I expect our leaders to have our backs, not to stab us in them.”
 
Advocates with Basic Rights Oregon are also speaking out against the President’s announcement. They say it not only promotes discrimination, it puts transgender service members in danger.
 
“They’re putting their lives on the line for the American people, for our values and our freedoms,” said spokeswoman Diane Goodwin. “And the commander in chief is starting his day targeting them and saying the military should now start discriminating against transgender people. That’s just wrong.”
 
While showing off her many medals for missions like Operation Iraqi Freedom, Scott added that she doesn’t buy Trump’s explanation about the military being unable to handle the burden of transgender people’s medical costs.

Whether it’s giving birth, getting cancer treatment or having knee surgery, Scott says service members take leave for a variety of medical issues that are never questioned.
 
“There’s so many people that step away from their duties, take care of themselves medically and then step back into their duties,” Scott said. “And nobody says they’re hampering our readiness.”
 
Scott said she’s grateful to be living life as her true self, but thinking of active, transgender soldiers right now is heartbreaking.
 
“Once you have 15,000-plus service members able to live their integrity, why would you want to take that away?” she said. 
 
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