On October 17, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) indicated a willingness to lift the ban which prevents transgender persons from serving openly in the United States Armed Forces. According to the Washington Blade, Pelosi spokesperson Drew Hammill said, “Pelosi believes there is no place for discrimination in the U.S. Armed Forces including on the basis of gender identity.” Pelosi has been a longtime supporter of rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender groups and was “a driving force” behind the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Mara Keisling of the National Center for Transgender Equality said she is happy to see Pelosi pushing for the end of the ban. Said Keisling, “Military service for transgendered people is right morally and, very importantly, it’s right for military readiness.” On October 14, Breitbart News reported on a Marine who is being held in connection with the death of a transgender woman in the Philippines. The Marine did not discover that the woman–Jeffrey Laude–was anatomically male until they got to the hotel room after a night of dancing. Jeffrey Laude was later found in the bathroom of the hotel room, “his head slumped in a toilet.” Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly
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