New Trump Proposal Just the Tip of the Iceberg

Trump and Mike Pence have proposed a revision to a section in the ACA that, if it goes through, will remove protections for LGBTQ people. Image by Doug Mills from the New York Times.

I really wish I didn’t have to write about this but I suppose it’s best to bring attention to it. It’s no secret that Trump and his administration has not been kind to LGBTQ people and he and Mike Pence have to the potential to make things a lot worse for non-heterosexuals, as they have recently proposed a revision to the ACA that would make it legal for healthcare workers to legally discriminate against LGBTQ even in critical situations, according to The Daily Beast.

On May 24th, Trump and Pence announced the proposed revision to Section 1557 of the ACA which added protections against discrimination for people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. With this new rule, it would be legal for healthcare workers to deny coverage for transgender people, refuse to provide gender reassignment surgery, refuse to treat trans people in emergency rooms, and refuse to fill prescriptions. The medical field already doesn’t treat transgender people with the respect that they deserve, as many have reported that they were refused treatment or were verbally and physically abused. Under this new rule, transgender people will most likely avoid seeking medical treatment in fear of even worse abuse and discrimination. 

Transgender people aren’t the only ones who could be potentially affected by this, as the revision would also remove language that was understood that “sex discrimination” included sexual orientation. In addition to this proposal, Trump has plans to allow a nationwide policy that would let adoption agencies to turn away prospective same-sex parents due to religious reason. 

Many Americans are displeased with the current healthcare system we have in place, with astronomical prices of surgery and medical procedures and the fact that even in a developed country people still can’t afford lifesaving surgeries because they don’t have access to health insurance. By revising this section of the ACA, Trump and Pence can make healthcare even worse because then people who work in the health profession can choose to only treat straight people, leaving millions of Americans to fend for themselves. 

Roger Severino, the Director of the Office for Civil Rights at the HHS, is responsible for spreading this proposal. In a sadly ironic twist of fate, Severino, while acting as the Director of the Office for Civil Rights, he is staunchly anti-gay and has been for his entire life, so it is hardly surprising that he is pushing for this revision. So much for draining the swamp, huh?

“Civil,” in general, means something that is of concern for ordinary citizens, i.e., non-military or ecclesiastical personnel. By proposing a religious exemption in healthcare and adoption agencies, the Trump administration is showing that they are not concerned about the rights of all Americans, just the ecclesiastical ones. But did anyone expect something different?

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Source: The Daily Beast

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