By defining sex so rigidly, it would essentially ignore intersex people as well as transgender people.
The move would be the most significant of a series of manoeuvres large and small, to exclude the population from civil rights protections and roll back the Obama administration's more fluid recognition of gender identity.
In the past, Roger Severino, head of the Office of Civil Rights accused the Obama administration of a "radical gender ideology".
That's not very controversial, particularly for HHS subsidiaries, who have struggled to handle questions about gender-based discrimination that arise, specifically, under Title IX, which covers sex and gender issues at publicly funded colleges and universities.
A 2016 ruling by a judge in Texas in response to one aspect of the Affordable Care Act found there was no protection against discrimination on the basis of gender identity.
The memo went on to say, "The sex listed on a person's birth certificate, as originally issued, shall constitute definitive proof of a person's sex unless rebutted by reliable genetic evidence".
That's a little.dramatic. Changing definitions under which government agencies operate does not summarily "render 1.4 million transgendered people legally nonexistent", particularly given that, until a few months ago, gender and sex was, in fact, determined by biological traits identifiable by or before birth.
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The definition is integral to two proposed rules now under review at the White House: one from the Education Department deals with complaints of sex discrimination at schools and colleges receiving federal financial assistance; the other, from health and human services, deals with health programs and activities that receive federal funds or subsidies.
The objective of the redefinition is to deny transgender people protection under federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex.
"When a young person hears that their existence and gender identity will not be recognized by their government, they hear that they are not worthy to be a part of that nation", said Amit Paley of The Trevor Project.
The Obama-era protections sparked a fierce backlash from many conservative groups, especially evangelical Christians, in regards to public restrooms, dormitory housing and same-sex programs.
"Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military".
A 2016 study by the Rand Corp. estimated that almost 4,000 transgender troops were on active duty and in the reserves, Politico reported.
The National Center for Transgender Equality, which is one of the organizations planning the Washington rally, warned on Twitter: "Make no mistake, trans people are under direct attack from the Trump Administration".