We Can ‘Afford’ Trans Soldiers: $134 Billion Spent on Viagra, Gitmo, and 3 Other Ridiculous Things
Trump’s Ridiculously Offensive Ban On Transgender Soldiers Is The Worst Kind Of Hate-Mongering
“President” Donald Trump can try and dress up his ban on transgender soldiers however he pleases, but let’s all take a moment to accept the truth here: this has nothing to do with healthcare costs, or the military’s effectiveness or lethality, or so-called “disruptions” transgender soldiers may cause. Trump and his administration are transphobic. That’s all there is to it.
Transgender soldiers have been serving openly in our military for over a year. They’ve been praised by their commanding officers and their service to this country hasn’t caused any issues whatsoever for the military. So what exactly is Trump’s ban on transgender individuals serving in our military? It’s bigotry and hate-mongering, plain and simple.
But sure, let’s play Trump’s game. Let’s pretend his ban on transgender soldiers was a decision related to costs and “disruptions,” and not related to hatred of LGBT Americans felt by himself and his bigoted VP, Mike Pence.
We already know from their year of open military service that transgender soldiers have had no impact whatsoever on military effectiveness. They haven’t caused any “disruptions,” as Trump put it on Twitter. So let’s just ignore that bit, seeing as how it’s absolute, unfiltered, undeniable bullshit.
Now let’s move onto his other assertion, shall we? Trump claims the US military can’t afford what he calls “tremendous medical costs” related to transgender soldiers. How much money are we talking about here?
Well, the Rand Corporation conducted a detailed study last year, and they found that transgender soldiers would cost the military between $2.4 million and $8.4 million per year. I wonder how much Trump has spent thus far traveling back and forth between DC and his golf resorts in Florida and New Jersey? Sorry, I digress.
Ten Wasteful Things The Pentagon Spends WAY More Money On Than Transgender Soldiers
$8.4 million sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? Well, to you and me, it definitely is. But for the US Military, who gobbles up around 17% of our government’s total budget and blows through $601 billion per year (as of 2015), $8.4 million is a drop in a bucket. Actually, it’s more like a drop in an ocean.
Surely, with a government that spends as much money on defense as the next seven biggest spenders in the world combined, the US military can play around with their budget and accommodate the expenses related to transgender soldiers, right? Well, I have a few suggestions.
1. The Military Spends $84 million (10 times as much) on Erectile Dysfunction Drugs
If you thought army dudes got freedom boners while cruising around in the world’s coolest airplanes, tanks, and helicopters, guess again. According to a report by the Military Times, the US Military spends around $41.6 million on Viagra, and $84 million total on erectile dysfunction medications in general.
Okay, it’s time for some quality military-themed dick jokes. Buckle in, gang… it’s hammer time.
We can’t have our soldiers serving at their best with their flag poles at half-staff. Soldiers are expected to do a lot of push-ups; it’s way less exhausting when you have a kick-stand. Without those erections, where are soldiers meant to hang their grenades? When your CO shouts “Attention,” he isn’t messing around. We can’t send our soldiers into battle half-cocked! When they say every inch of a soldier’s body should be a weapon, they really friggin’ mean it. Did you ever wonder how soldiers line up in such perfectly-measured rows? Now you know. When these soldiers shoot, they shoot to thrill!
Okay folks. It’s time to drop our cocks and grab our socks and move on to a different subject before my editor’s chest implodes.
2. The Military Spent $8.2 billion (976 Times As Much) Buying 90 F-35 Jets That May Or May Not Actually Work
Arguably everyone’s favorite military boondoggle, the F-35 fighter jet recently cost our military a staggering $8.2 billion in a contract with Lockheed Martin to produce 90 of the controversial planes. The F-35 might make some pretty cool appearances in movies and video games, but in January, Gizmodo reported that the military had found 276 critical deficiencies in the plane’s combat performance. That’s a whole lot of money to spend on an airplane that doesn’t do the things it’s supposed to do.
3. The Military Spent $400 million (47.6 Times As Much) Buying A Ship That Doesn’t Work
Another fruitless vehicle that doesn’t perform as expected? Littoral Combat Ships, which suffer from countless design flaws and are ultimately considered unreliable by — wait for it! — the Navy. We could cancel buying one of these ships that don’t work and fund transgender soldiers serving in our military for half of a century.
4. The Government Spends $445 Million (Nearly 53 Times As Much) Keeping Guantanamo Bay Open
That’s right, we’re spending $445 million each year keeping Gitmo operational, and that’s to house 41 inmates. The actual cost could be a lot higher, since a number of important costs related to Guantanamo Bay are classified.
5. The Military Wastes $125 billion (Almost 14,880 As Much) Per Year… And Then Tried To Cover It Up
Let’s not forget how the Pentagon attempted to cover up a report last December that showed $125 billion in wasteful administrative spending. It’s absolutely ludicrous that Trump claims we can’t afford $8.4 million on transgender soldiers’ medical expenses when the Pentagon wastes so much yearly on administrative costs. Then again, Trump isn’t actually concerned with expenses. His complaints are rooted in his transphobia, but we already knew that.
Featured image courtesy of Simon Dawson/ Bloomberg via Getty Images
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Matt Terzi is a political satirist and essayist from Binghamton, New York, who has written for some of the most prominent satire publications in the country. He’s now moving into more “serious” subject matter, without losing touch with his comedic roots