Multiple news organizations were quick to announce on Inauguration Day when visitors to the White House website could no longer locate the webpages for “civil rights,” “healthcare,” “climate change,” and “LGBT.”
These terms and webpages, however, have not been completely wiped from whitehouse.gov, but have since been transferred to obamawhitehouse.archives.gov, the archive of the Obama administration’s White House website. This practice is not new, seeing as National Archives and Records Administration has frozen each president’s White House website since President Bill Clinton. (Side note: can we all appreciate that this cheesy beveled/embossed layout is forever preserved in the National Archives?)
While this transition reflects an adherence to protocol rather than an overt display of spite, it is worth mentioning which pages are available for public consumption, which among other things, focus on economic reform and emphasize the role of law enforcement. In short, the issues the new White House has chosen to promote this early are those of economic and militaristic concern, and not of human rights or the environment.
The Trump administration has only just gotten started, and these issues should not be considered the entirety of the administrations’ platform. The fact that these are listed first and foremost, however, reflects Trump administrations’ top priorities.
The limited breadth of policy coverage on the White House website and the neglect to address LGBTQA issues does not necessarily spell malicious intent in itself toward the community. However, the shift in policy priority from President Obama’s mostly pro-LGBTQA record, along with the appointment and nomination of a historically homophobic cabinet and staff, presents us with an executive branch without the best interests of the LGBTQA community in mind.
At this point, the LGBTQA community and its supporters have less to fear in regards to the White House website gatekeeping information by not openly publishing Trump’s policies concerning climate change, civil rights or LGBTQA issues. Rather, they should consider the consequences of an administration that ignores these issues altogether.
This post was written by Casie Wilson. Follow her on Twitter @casiedwilson