Shocking no one, President Donald Trump “didn’t know anything” about the Food and Drug Administration revising its guidelines for gay and bi men who want to donate blood.
At a press conference last Friday, the infamously anti-LGBTQ POTUS was asked about the FDA easing its outdated blood donation rules that same week.
Under the agency’s widely critiqued former guidances, men who sleep with other men (MSM) faced a 12-month deferral period for blood or plasma donations. With the coronavirus pandemic prompting “unprecedented challenges to the U.S. blood supply,” the FDA has shortened that wait time for MSM to three months—a decision advocates from groups like GLAAD and HRC believe is a positive step forward but still unsatisfactory.
The FDA’s move today lowering the deferral of gay and bi men, and others in the LGBTQ community, from 12 to 3 months shows that we have the power to make change — but we’re not done. Sign the petition now and demand the ban be lifted entirely: https://t.co/seUHP6mgxI pic.twitter.com/eYcKj4cJ4f
— GLAAD (@glaad) April 2, 2020
“No. I didn’t know anything about [the change],” Trump told a reporter from The Washington Blade. “That was done by the FDA, very capable people at the FDA.”
Though the president’s ignorance on the subject isn’t exactly surprising, LGBTQ activists say it is indicative of his priorities as a leader. Spoiler alert: America’s queer community and the unique struggles we face don’t rank high on that list.
“LGBTQ people are not Trump’s priority,” HRC national press secretary Lucas Acosta said in a media statement. “Never have been, and by every indicator, never will be.”