When you want to bury a news story, you put out a press release right at the end of the day on a Friday. That way there’s basically no chance for it to have a massive impact: the earliest it could be really covered is the Sunday morning yak shows, and those are taped. So there are two days to cool down.
Such is the case with the tremendous news that the ban on transgender service people in the military is to be lifted. There are some logistics to sort out, of course, but defense secretary Ash Carter made the announcement yesterday.
The Friday evening thing sticks with me, though, and for two reasons: one, it’s a shame that gender identity is still the sort of thing we have to bury in the news cycle, and two, I can hardly wait for the wingnut reaction on Monday to this news. It’s going to be epically funny.
Some estimates put the number of transgender service personnel in the US military at around 15,000, a significant number however you look at it. There have been long assumptions, too, that the military helps those with alternate gender identities find a place to fit in or hide.
It’s another victory for our society, this, but there is so much further yet to go. Any bets on how many times we hear the slur “pedophile” in response on Monday?