Sisters Jackie and Juliet Evancho are disappointed by President Donald Trump’s recently announced sweeping ban against transgender people serving in the military, but say the controversial move has motivated them to “fight even harder.”
“Transgender people are people and we can fight just as hard as anyone else in the military and the expenses aren’t that bad,” Juliet, a transgender woman, tells PEOPLE Now.
The president announced his proposed ban on Twitter in late July, reversing an Obama Administration policy to allow transgender service members to serve openly.
“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail,” Trump wrote in one of his tweets about his decision.
Says Jackie, 17, of the move, “It was another one of those moments where I was like, ‘That’s a disappointment.’ No one really expected it, and I mean, I didn’t expect it definitely. It just gives me more reason to keep fighting.”
The America’s Got Talent finalist actually performed at the president’s inauguration, but has since pushed back at Trump in the months that have followed – including his signing of a February executive order rolling back protections for trans youth.
Meanwhile, Juliet says she wants Trump to be truthful about where he stands “on transgender people, honestly.”
“I mean, before when he was campaigning and everything, he was pro-LGBTQ and he was like, ‘I’m going to protect them,’ ” she tells PEOPLE Now. “And now, he’s pulling everything away from us and we have to fight even harder.”
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The Evancho sisters will appear in a new TLC special, Growing Up Evancho, on Wednesday night, which focuses on the Pittsburgh-based family and their daughters’ complicated rise to fame.
Growing Up Evancho airs Wednesday night at 10 p.m. EST on TLC.