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How Trump administration pressure to dump 4-H’s LGBT policy led to Iowa leader’s firing

Nov 19, 2018

By Courtney Crowder and Jason Clayworth

The Trump administration pushed the national 4-H youth organization to withdraw a controversial policy welcoming LGBT members — a move that helped lead to the ouster of Iowa’s top 4-H leader earlier this year, a Des Moines Register investigation has found.

The international youth organization, with more than 6 million members, introduced the new policy to ensure LGBT members felt protected by their local 4-H program — part of a larger effort to modernize the federally authorized youth group and broaden membership.

Several states posted the policy on their websites, including Iowa, where it prompted fierce opposition from conservatives and some evangelical groups.

“The current focus of this campaign may be Iowa, but the values and vision of the entire Cooperative Extension are under attack,” Andy Turner, director of the New York 4-H program, wrote in an email to John-Paul Chaisson-Cárdenas, Iowa’s top 4-H leader, last April.

But within days of the LGBT policy’s publication, Heidi Green, then-chief of staff for U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, requested that it be rescinded, Sonny Ramaswamy, then-director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, the federal department that administers 4-H, told the Register.

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One comment on “How Trump administration pressure to dump 4-H’s LGBT policy led to Iowa leader’s firing”


    President Trump’s administration is asking the US Supreme Court to consider its proposed restrictions on transgender military members.
    It is requesting that the top court review lower court rulings blocking a military ban on transgender people.

    Federal courts have prevented the military from implementing a policy barring some transgender Americans from service.

    The administration wants the court to hear the dispute this term.

    The president announced on Twitter in 2017 that the country would no longer “accept or allow” transgender Americans to serve in the military, citing “tremendous medical costs and disruption”.

    The administration has since limited the policy to transgender individuals with a history of gender dysphoria.

    Following legal challenges, judges in federal courts in three jurisdictions – Washington state, California, and Washington, DC – have refused to lift injunctions issued against the president’s original ban to allow the updated policy to be enforced.

    The US government is appealing those decisions.

    I see the chief of ignorant bigotry is once again hoping courts will endorse his demands and attacks on  minority groups of US citizens!


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