One of the questions many Americans had when Trump became president was how he would handle LGBTQ rights. Public opinion on same-sex marriage has shifted dramatically in the past decade and the Trump administration hasn't publicly signaled a desire to change that. Trump even added an openly gay man to his cabinet, creating somewhat of an appearance of being LGBTQ-friendly.
However, his record with transgender rights betrays that appearance. Transgender people have become a favorite target of conservative politics, and actions taken by Trump himself have been considered discriminatory by LGBTQ advocates.
These actions were highlighted by a mother of a transgender child at Biden's town hall event. Mieke Haeck introduced herself to the former vice president as "a proud mom of two girls, ages 8 and 10," before adding, "My youngest daughter is transgender."
"The Trump administration has attacked the rights of transgender people, banning them from military service, weakening non-discrimination protections and even removing the word 'transgender' from some government websites," she said, then asked, "How will you as president reverse this dangerous and discriminatory agenda and ensure that the right and lives of LGBTQ people are protected under U.S. law?"
Biden took approximately 0.3 seconds to think about it, then answered, "I will flat out just change the law."
Asked by a mother of a transgender child about what he will do to protect LGBTQ rights, former VP Biden says: "I wi… https://t.co/hcwU0PedXo— ABC News (@ABC News)1602811213.0
"I'd eliminate those executive orders, number one," he said. He told a story about seeing two men kiss when he was a kid and his dad said, "Joey, it's simple. They love one another." He said that kids don't just randomly decide to be transgender, and he also pointed to the high incidences of transgender women of color being murdered.
"I promise you," he said, 'There is no reason to suggest that there should be any right denied your daughter...that your other daughter has a right to be and do. None. Zero."
Biden was the one who pushed the Obama administration to come out and publicly endorse same-sex marriage after he did so himself in a Meet the Press interview in 2012—a moment that was unplanned by either the White House or Biden himself.
"When I get asked a direct question, I give a direct answer. I come out of civil rights movement, there's not a way I could sit there and be asked about the civil rights issue of our day and not be silent," BIden said about the interview, according to McClatchey D.C. Three days after that Meet the Press aired, President Obama announced that he supported legalizing same-sex marriage as well, and the rest is history.
However, as with all civil rights, who is in power can make or break whether such rights are upheld. For many LGBTQ families and people who care about everyone enjoying the same rights, hearing Joe Biden so swiftly and surely state that he would undo the discriminatory practices of the Trump administration was reassuring.
Wow. I’m moved watching Biden talk with the mom of a transgender child about LGBTQ equality. This is the country I… https://t.co/2YZlk7WlER— Bryce Tache (@Bryce Tache)1602811132.0
Joe Biden just said too many transgender women of color have been murdered. This is something you will NEVER hear… https://t.co/Cs82SMOU1U— Dana Goldberg (@Dana Goldberg)1602811204.0
We just got the first Transgender question in the whole damn campaign. Biden says he promises there is no reason to… https://t.co/7kCr643dAf— Mark Ruffalo (@Mark Ruffalo)1602811118.0
Americans came around to the idea of gay marriage largely thanks to the actions taken by Biden when he was in the White House before. Perhaps people will come to a more compassionate understanding of transgender issues if he gets his chance there again.
- Watch this transgender comedian take down Trump on 'The Tonight ... ›
- This university's transgender bathroom signs are on point. - Upworthy ›
- I'm transgender and Christian. Here's what I did when evangelicals ... ›
- Clip of Biden comforting the son of a Parkland school shooting victim has Americans in tears - Upworthy ›