THE US army continues to expand on its inclusiveness of LGBTI service members since the 2011 decision to repeal the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

The infamous policy barred any gay or bisexual people from disclosing their sexual orientation or from speaking about any same-sex relationships, including marriages or other familial attributes, while serving in the US armed forces.

[showads ad=MREC]It’s now on track to remove its classification of trans* people as “administratively unfit”, meaning they will no longer be deemed to have a “psychosexual condition” by the Standards of Medical Fitness.

This change will come into effect at some point in 2016.

In light of the impending change, the Huffington Post recently shared an interview with and collection of photos of US’ first openly trans* soldier.

Sergeant Shane Ortega, who was born in a girl’s body, told Huffington Post that while he has drawn a lot of attention and scrutiny he is always careful to follow the military rules including having to wear the women’s dress uniform in order to meet the Army’s regulations.

“I just play the game,” he said.

“Even though it’s incredibly humiliating and highly uncomfortable. I have to prove a point. I’m doing everything they ask me to do.”

The 77kg, tattoo-covered bodybuilder, who enjoys wearing tank tops to show off his physique, has served in three combat tours — two in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.

“Daily I receive correspondence from both active service members and citizens that just want to serve the country they love as the person they are,” he said.

“Some of the active service members are desperate, alienated, alone and suicidal.”

It’s estimated that 15,500 trans* people currently serve in the US military, according to a report by The Williams Institute.

 

#transmilitary took quick selfie before the flight. A photo posted by Shane Ortega (@minihulkin) on

 

 

America America…

A photo posted by Shane Ortega (@minihulkin) on

 

 

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