Statement in Response to Transgender Ban and Arpaio Pardon

Employment, Police Accountability, Racial Justice

Statement in Response to Transgender Ban and Arpaio Pardon

At the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice, we condemn President Trump’s effort to turn a bigot into a national hero and to demonize transgender people.

The violence that erupted in Charlottesville, Virginia, demonstrates that we need to work together — across communities and movements — to make this country a better place for all of us. Instead, President Trump has chosen to pardon a convicted bigot and to categorically exclude heroic Americans from military service based on their gender identity.

Pardoning Sheriff Arpaio — a divisive figure known for unconstitutional law enforcement practices — is deeply damaging to the rule of law. It encourages law enforcement officials to engage in racial profiling and discriminatory practices. This pardon will erode community policing efforts across the country, and intensify an already tense relationship between communities of color and law enforcement officials.

Similarly, President Trump’s discriminatory exclusion of transgender people from military service marks a low moment in our country’s journey towards equality and justice. This exclusion from a federal workplace will open the door to further social and economic injustices for transgender people.

For nearly 50 years, the Lawyers’ Committee has stood firmly against discrimination. For all of us, the struggle for justice and equality continues.