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Should the Military's Transgender Ban Be Lifted? Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Weighs in


"This is an area where we've not defined enough."

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said Sunday that the U.S. military's policy of prohibiting transgender Americans from openly serving in the armed forces "continually should be reviewed."

"I'm open to that, by the way," he 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."

"This is an area where we've not defined enough," he continued on ABC's "This Week."

Before conveying his openness to reviewing the ban, however, Hagel conceded the issue was "a bit more complicated" than allowing gay and lesbian individuals to openly serve.

"[It] has a medical component," he said. "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."

(H/T: Think Progress)

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