A new Merchant Marine Academy transgender policy that allows midshipmen to undergo gender transitions and get exemptions from their military service requirement is under fire by House Republicans.
Effectively, someone seeking a free education can sign up for a gender transition, get a free education from the military and no longer have to commit to military service, House Republicans fear.
The policy went into effect Oct. 13 and sets up Merchant Marine Academy policies for those "transitioning while enrolled at the academy so as to remove barriers for those with a diagnosis of gender dysphoria or who identify as transgender," the New York Post reported Sunday.
"Our service academies are critical institutions for the security of our nation, not laboratories for the far-left's social experiments," Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind., told the Post. "Forcing radical gender ideology on the young men and women who want to serve their country is dangerous and wrong."
The policy comes from President Joe Biden's 2021 executive order that required his administration to "to ensure compliance with the stated policy of preventing and combating discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation."
Rep. Brian Babin, R-Texas, lamented the "radical" policy will "lead to the exploitation of our once-pristine academies."
"Leftist transgender policies have not only infiltrated American colleges and universities but also our service academies — it must stop," Babin wrote in a statement included in a Banks letter to the Merchant Marine Academy.
The policy permits gender identity in addition to facilitating the transitions.
"We are disturbed by the policy guidelines that would allow Midshipmen who identify as transgender during their third or fourth year at USMMA to receive a medical waiver from their obligated service," the letter read, the Post reported.
"This creates a dangerous avenue for exploiting our nation's prestigious service academies."
The letter was co-signed by Reps. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C.; Mary Miller, R-Ill.; Harriet Hageman, R-Wyo.; Scott DesJarlais, R-Tenn.; Doug LaMalfa, R-Calif.; Glenn Grothman, R-Wis.; and Matt Rosendale, R-Mont., and it asked why "gender dysphoria" should be "considered a 'medically disqualifying condition.'"
"Woke ideology and social experiments cannot be tolerated, supported, or funded in any branch of our armed forces," Hageman wrote in a statement in the letter.
"Our world is on fire due to the failed policies and weakness of the Biden administration, leaving our military unable to concurrently operate in two theaters of war."
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
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