From the July 26 edition of CNN's Anderson Cooper 360:
ANDERSON COOPER (HOST): The president's tweet today read in part that the military “cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that the transgendered in the military would entail.” What do you think would taking transgender military members out of the service actually look like? Talk about disruption, to use the president's word.
KRISTIN BECK: You used the exact work and it's disruption. I have one particular friend who is in the army. She speaks Farsi, Arabic, and about five other languages. She's been in war zone a couple of times, back and forth. She's immensely capable. How are you going to replace that person? All that experience and all those language skills. And I can give you dozens and dozens of accounts of people with that kind of experience. If you had me right now serving in the military, you can't replace a senior chief. You can't replace all that experience. That's a very difficult replacement. So you're talking about some huge disruptions.
COOPER: The president, according to the White House press secretary, concluded that having transgendered individuals in the military, “erodes military readiness and unit cohesion.” That's a quote. I wonder what is your reaction to that. That's an argument that's been made, frankly, for whether or not to have African-Americans serving in the military, and then whether to have openly gay people serving in the military, gay and lesbian people. So, does it effect unit cohesion?
BECK: Well, you brought up the exact point. This is the 1950s, going back to segregation, you're going to the “don't ask, don't tell” era. Nothing ever happened. When we integrated in the military-- it was better. That diversity makes us stronger. That diversity is what we need. It's the same thing. These are excuses. This is some kind of -- something's going on. It has nothing to do with unit cohesion, readiness, or their capability. It's nothing to do with that.