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Conservatives Spew Transphobia at Already Anti-Trans Federal Agency

US Army recruits

Some right-wing influencers got upset about a tweet by a relatively obscure federal agency, the Selective Service System.

An agency that deals with registering American men of adult age for the draft, the Selective Service System, is getting a lot of attention from conservatives because of how the agency handles matters surrounding sex and gender identity.

Earlier this month, the agency sent a tweet that sent conservatives over the edge and gave the right-wing influencers more fodder for transphobic bigotry.

"Parents, if your son is an only son and the last male in your family to carry the family name, he is still required to register with SSS," the agency tweeted. "Learn more about who needs to register," along with a link to the system's guidelines.

Reaction to the post was mixed, from some users seemingly surprised to learn that Selective Service is still a thing to others who believe a conspiracy theory that the Biden administration is secretly preparing for nuclear war with Russia.

Stephen Miller, the Trump administration figure behind some of the most hateful acts of that period, including childhood separation, tweeted, "Growing concern about Biden tumbling us into nuclear Armageddon."

But not to be outdone, ultra-MAGA influencers like Jenna Ellis, a legal advisor for former President Donald Trump's presidential campaign who pushed the false claim of election fraud and was compelled to testify before a Georgia grand jury about her involvement in the plot to influence the election, took the opportunity to target the LGBTQ+ community.

"What is a male?" the former traffic lawyer tweeted on October 9, amplifying the tweet to her hundreds of thousands of followers.

"My son's a girl now, so we good," one Twitter user wrote in reaction to the tweet.

"The government believes in two genders again when it's time to send your kids to die so Lockheed doesn't miss quarterly revenue numbers," another Twitter user said.

In the United States, all males have had to register with Selective Services within 30 days of turning 18.

Its purpose is to register and maintain a system for rapidly supplying personnel fairly and equitably during a military draft. It also manages an alternative service program for conscientious objectors.

Failing to register is a felony with up to five years imprisonment, a quarter-million dollar fine, and other exclusions of access to government services.

According to the Selective Service System website, male U.S. citizens and male immigrants must register with Selective Service if they are 18 to 26 years old.

According to the site, all men must sign up for the draft, including U.S. citizens or immigrants who were assigned male at birth but no longer idenfity as male.

"Individuals who are born female and have changed their gender to male" don't have to sign up, the site states.

The Military Selective Service Act does not acknowledge transgender people,and gender identity issues are not addressed.

The Advocate reached out to the Selective Service System to inquire about its policies but did not hear back.

The National Center for Transgender Equality is critical of the system and tells The Advocate in a statement that the agency should change.

"The Selective Service System was established in 1917 to administer the draft and maintain an updated database of potential service members in times of no draft. It was meant to be a simple system in which men registered, and women were exempt. This thinking, however, largely fails to account for the transgender experience," said Rodrigo Heng-Lehtinen, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality.

"The federal government should either phase out the Selective Service System altogether or - as the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service recommends - make it gender neutral," he added.

The National Center for Transgender Equality provides resources on its website that address questions about the Selective Service System.

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