The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the primary Federal Agency that collects information on anything that could affect the health-related well being of Americans, has been instructed not to use certain words in documents that might at some point be used in budget discussions.

Since that could be almost anything, these words must not be used in documents at the CDC. They are forbidden words.

Among the words that must not be used is the word “transgender.”

The religious right, which now dominates social policy at the Federal level of the Executive branch, has for a while been pushing the idea that transgender people either (a) do not exist except for perhaps a tiny handful of severely mentally folks who would stop making such annoying claims about who they are if only they mercifully got enough regular beatings or were starved adequately or subjected to sufficient electroshock or (b) transgender people are “fake news” created by the “liberal media” as part of a Satanic plot to destroy Jesus and America.

At the end of the Obama administration, various Federal agencies were working on plans for a systematic count of transgender Americans as the first step in figuring out how to address our needs. Our society was inching its way towards full acceptance of transition-related medical care for transgender citizens as a routine and insurance-covered part of medicine. The Justice Department was beginning to defend our rights in such areas as employment and housing and to take seriously our being routinely assaulted and murdered.

It now appears that officially we don’t exist.

In George Orwell’s 1984 people whose very existence had been deleted from all records were called unpersons. They hadn’t merely been murdered, they had never been.

Given that the administration is at the very least on friendly terms with Holocaust deniers and similar hate-based cranks, I suppose this was to be expected.





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