The Trump Administration’s attempt to completely erase the LGBTQ community rages on. First, the White House deleted the LGBT rights page from its official website. Then it axed the White House Office of AIDS Policy. Then it announced massive cuts to the HIV/AIDS research budget. Now, it wants to eliminate LGBTQ citizens from the 2020 census.
Every 10 years, the federal government conducts the U.S. Census to determine the number of people living in the country. They also record things like race and gender, employment and marital status, household income and education levels, and other information to help paint as accurate a picture as possible to then determine what resources it needs to spend where.
Under the Obama administration, it was decided that 2020 Census would start to include sexual orientation and gender identity. But this week, the Trump Administration’s said, actually, no, the 2020 Census would not count LGBTQ people.
The move wasn’t just symbolic either. As Meghan Maury, Criminal and Economic Justice Project Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force, explained in a statement released on Tuesday:
Information from these surveys helps the government to enforce federal laws like the Violence Against Women Act and the Fair Housing Act and to determine how to allocate resources like housing supports and food stamps. If the government doesn’t know how many LGBTQ people live in a community, how can it do its job to ensure we’re getting fair and adequate access to the rights, protections and services we need?
The HRC wasn’t having it either. On Tuesday night, the organization tweeted:
The Trump Administration is erasing "sexual orientation" & "gender identity" from the 2020 census — but they #CantEraseUs 1/4
— HumanRightsCampaign (@HRC) March 29, 2017
Pretty soon the hashtag #CantEraseUs began trending, with folks all across the country tweeting @realDonaldTrump that, try as he might, his Administration was not going to purge LGBTQ people’s existence from the records.
Check out some of the tweets…
EXCUSE ME?!?!??? Are you just not acknowledging there existence? Their contribution as American citizens? Will you return their paid taxes? https://t.co/ehKccCgqP0
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) March 29, 2017
— Ashley ?? ???? (@mouseam) March 29, 2017
— Gary FrostGermanotta (@frostygary) March 29, 2017
— Will Scheffer (@schefferwill) March 29, 2017
Hateful step backward. We worked hard to achieve this originally because full/proper census essential for provision of critical services. https://t.co/Yxy5HPlJig
— (((Rep. Nadler))) (@RepJerryNadler) March 29, 2017
So does this mean if i won't exist on the 2020 census i don't have to pay my taxes like our president? #CantEraseUs
— Jay (@JayFresonke) March 29, 2017
— Eric Rosswood (@LGBT_Activist) March 29, 2017
— Emily Waters (@Emiwaters) March 29, 2017
— Rep. Frank Pallone (@FrankPallone) March 29, 2017
— Anne Swanson (@anneswanson9) March 29, 2017
— Rep. Joe Kennedy III (@RepJoeKennedy) March 29, 2017