Earlier this year, we saw the Pentagon lift its ban on restrictions against trans men and women serving in the military. Fast forward to last month, the U.S Department of Defense revealed its policy to allow transgender individuals to access the necessary resources toward receiving medical transitions—which is why Aaron Wixson coming forward as one of the first openly transgender men to serve in our military matters now more than ever.
Wixson, who began serving in 2014, came out after the ban lift, in hopes that the military would follow through with their support of the trans community. “I will feel that I am finally seen as who I really am,” Wixson told CNN about publicly transitioning. “They’ve worked very, very hard to get me the help I need and help me get through this process. I’m very lucky and grateful for their support.”
The New York Times reports that close to 2,500 people that serve in the U.S military identify themselves as transgender, so Wixson’s public transition can pave the way for many more military personnel to come.
“I’m really grateful to be able to serve openly in the Marine Corps as transgender,” he revealed. “When you get to be yourself you’re a much more effective member of the team.”