Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Sunday the U.S. military should review its ban on allowing transgender people to serve openly in the armed forces, saying that "every qualified American" should have an opportunity to serve.
President Barack Obama has made lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights a priority during his time in office, and in 2010 signed legislation ending the "don't ask, don't tell" policy that had prevented gay men and women from serving openly in the military.
Hagel did not make clear whether he felt the ban on transgender troops should be reversed.
"The issue of transgender is a bit more complicated because it has a medical component to it," Hagel told ABC's This Week program. "These issues require medical attention. Austere locations where we put our men and women in many cases don't always provide that kind of opportunity."
But in backing a review of the ban, Hagel said: "I'm open to those assessments because, again, I go back to the bottom line: Every qualified American who wants to serve our country should have an opportunity if they fit the qualifications and can do it."
Reporting by Will Dunham; Editing by Jim Loney and Leslie Adler
© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.
To contact us or to submit an article, click here.
Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.
Five ways to deepen your relationship with God, increase your faith and save money!
- Deepen Your Relationship with God with a FREE eCourse: Click Here to view all of our free e-Courses. Favorite topics include Fear, Forgiveness, Holy Spirit, Supernatural, and How to Hear God.
- Super Discounts and Close-Out Specials: Click Here to view all our bundles and close-out specials and save up to 86%! Prayer, Holy Spirit, Anointing, the Supernatural and more.
- God Wants to Anoint Women Now: Rise up and enter the anointing of Deborah, Anna, Esther, Ruth and Hannah. You were called to go higher. Click Here to learn more.
- Change Your Atmosphere and Circumstances Through Prayer! John Eckhardt's prayer bundle gives you six powerful books to help you pray and change any situation. Click Here.
- HUGE Bible Sale!: Click Here to save up to 50% off a great selection of Bibles. Plus, get a free gift with each order!
Attention Pastors and Leaders: Leadership training and development are crucial for success. Enroll in a FREE 1-hour leadership mini-course by Dr. Mark Rutland. View Details