CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A Lowcountry veteran described what he fears will happen to transgender individuals who will not be allowed to join the military if they want a gender transition.
Rhys Crabtree is a transgender male who served in the Navy for four years.
During that time, he was an Aerographer’s Mate and came out during the last few months of his service.
If Tuesday’s Supreme Court decision had taken place back when Crabtree was first thinking of joining the navy, he wouldn’t have been able to join.
“It angers me a lot because if I passed the qualifications, if the only thing that says I’m not fit for service is that my gender identity didn’t match the body I was born with, that’s not good enough,” said Crabtree.
The high court voted 5-4 on a revised plan that bar many people identifying with a gender different from their biological sex from military service.
Crabtree believes that is not a good enough reason for denying someone the right to serve in the military.
“As a trans-man, I’m just as worthy of service as my cis-gender husband,” he said. “I am no less because I have to take a shot every week for the testosterone I’m supposed to have.”
In a statement to CNN, A Pentagon spokesperson said:
"As always, we treat all transgender persons with respect and dignity. (The Department of Defense's) proposed policy is NOT a ban on service by transgender persons.”
Supporters of the decision say the medical needs for someone who’s transitioning could keep someone from doing the job they need to do.