Credo Action

Tell the Senate: No anti-LGBTQ extremist as Army secretary

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The petition to the Senate reads:

"Block bigoted, anti-LGBTQ extremist Sen. Mark Green as Army secretary."

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    Tell the Senate: No anti-LGBTQ extremist as Army secretary

    Another anti-LGTBQ bigot in the Trump administration?

    Donald Trump recently announced that he is nominating Tennessee state Sen. Mark Green to be the new Army Secretary of the United States.1

    Sen. Green has dedicated his political career to fostering inequality and bigotry based on religious ideology, and there’s no reason to believe that would stop if he’s confirmed as secretary of the Army. Last fall, Sen. Green was videotaped telling the Tea Party of Chattanooga that “[being] transgender is a disease.2 In his time as senator in the Tennessee Legislature he has relentlessly attacked LGBTQ equality, and he is a proponent of dangerous and out-of-control gun laws that would allow anyone to carry guns without permits.

    The Army secretary is tasked with treating all members of the armed services fairly and equally. Bigoted, right-wing extremist Sen. Green won’t do that. The Senate must block his nomination.

    Tell the Senate: Block bigot Sen. Green as Army Secretary.

    Sen. Green has built his political career on pushing ultra-conservative legislation grounded in legitimizing discrimination against LGBTQ people and women.3 He has sponsored and endorsed a multitude of harmful bills designed to discriminate against people in Tennessee, including a bill that would make it illegal for transgender students to use the bathroom that aligns with their gender identity,4 one that would make it illegal for the government to not work with or fund businesses or agencies that promote anti-LGBTQ discriminataion,5 and one that would allow all educators to opt out of teaching material that conflicts with their religious and moral beliefs6 – like material about climate change or LGBTQ rights.

    He also believes that mental health practitioners should have the freedom to withhold treatment from LGBTQ people seeking help7 and physicians should have the right to withhold contraceptives and the morning-after-pill from women.8

    The Army secretary is responsible for developing, implementing and enforcing all policies related to members of the armed forces. It sets the tone for behavior in the Army. If confirmed, Sen. Green’s elevation to this position would validate and condone anti-LGBTQ and anti-women sentiments and actions. Women in the military already experience violence and sexual assault at twice the civilian rate,9 and LGBTQ people have only been able to serve openly since 2011.10 It is a disservice to bring in an Army secretary who will turn back the clock on equality and safety for LGBTQ and women service members.

    After Sen. Green’s nomination was announced, the LGBTQ and military community immediately and forcefully pushed back.11 We are pushing with them. Our military personnel deserve better than a bigoted, right-wing extremist committed to discrimination. The Senate must block his nomination.

    Tell the Senate: Block bigot Sen. Green as Army Secretary.

    Thank you for your activism.

    References:
    1. Michael Collins, “President Trump nominates Tennessee state Sen. Mark Green for Army secretary,” USA Today, April 7, 2017.
    2. Amanda Terkel, “Trump’s Pick To Lead The Army Believes Being Transgender Is A Disease,” The Huffington Post, April 7, 2017.
    3. Nathaniel Frank, “Trump’s Expected Pick for Army Secretary Is a Stealth Anti-LGBTQ Extremist,” Slate, April 5, 2017.
    4. Sen. Mae Beavers, "Tennessee Senate Bill 771," introduced Feb. 9, 2017.
    5. Sen. Mark Green, “Tennessee Senate Bill 127,” accessed April 14, 2017.
    6. Sen. Mark Green, “Tennessee Senate Bill 14,” introduced April 4, 2017.
    7. Sen. Jack Johnson, “Tennessee Senate Bill 1556,” introduced Feb. 10, 2016.
    8. Billy Hallowell, “Sparks Fly Over Bill That Would Protect Counselors From Treating People With ‘Behaviors That Conflict With a Sincerely Held Religious Belief,’” The Blaze, April 7, 2016.
    9. Joachim Hagopian, “Sexual Assault against Women in the U.S. Armed Forces,” GlobalResearch, March 23, 2014.
    10. Nicole Puglise, “'Don't ask, don't tell': military members 'out and proud' five years after repeal,” The Guardian, Sept. 27, 2016.
    11. Helene Cooper and Maggie Haberman, “L.G.B.T. Advocates Criticize Nominee for Army Secretary,” The New York Times, April 7, 2017.