- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 2, 2024

A transgender Biden administration official dismissed the outcry over the White House proclamation marking Transgender Day of Visibility on the same day as Easter, rejecting the pushback as “manufactured.”

Assistant Health and Human Services Secretary Rachel Levine defended President Biden’s much-criticized declaration in an interview with The Advocate, an LGBTQ news and opinion outlet.

“I felt that it was faux outrage,” Adm. Levine said in the Monday interview. “It was manufactured.”

Transgender Day of Visibility has been held on March 31 since it was invented by a transgender activist in 2009, but this year it fell on Easter, the holiest day of the Christian calendar. The date of Easter varies from year to year.

“It’s just that this Sunday was Easter, which is a very important holiday and very important event, and it also just happened to be the 31st,” said Adm. Levine, an officer in the U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps. 

Mr. Biden has recognized the transgender observance each year since becoming president, but his decision to do so this year with a proclamation specifically designating March 31 as Transgender Day of Visibility struck conservative Christians as a slap in the face.

House Speaker Mike Johnson blasted Mr. Biden’s proclamation as “outrageous,” while the Trump campaign ripped it as “appalling and insulting.”

CatholicVote President Brian Burch suggested that another day should have been selected this year to honor the “fake” transgender event.

“They may claim that this ‘holiday’ is always on March 31, but it is a fake and arbitrary observance which was invented in 2009 compared with the 2,000-year history of Easter,” he told The Washington Times.

Mr. Biden also issued a statement Sunday wishing Christians around the world a “happy Easter and may God bless you.”

Adm. Levine, who transitioned from male to female in 2011, became in 2021 the first openly transgender person to serve in a Senate-confirmed office.

The public health official posted a video message on social media Sunday wishing everyone a “happy Transgender Day of Visibility.”

“Each year on March 31, we celebrate transgender Americans and all that they have accomplished,” said Adm. Levine. “We honor the many contributions transgender Americans make in health, medicine, public service, and across our nation.”

The video post drew a rash of sarcastic comments such as “Happy Easter” and “Today is Easter but nice try.”

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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