Manning announces she is transitioning

Early this morning, Chelsea Manning – who was recently sentenced to 35 years for leaking classified documents – announced to the world that she would be transitioning:

As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. I hope that you will support me in this transition. I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility). I look forward to receiving letters from supporters and having the opportunity to write back.

That Manning is trans isn’t exactly news – for some time, it has been fairly public that Manning had questions about her gender assigned at birth. What is news, however, is Manning’s request to be called Chelsea and to be referred to with feminine pronouns.

Now is the time when the solidarity politics of the folks on the left who have been behind Manning this whole time will be tested – will they take the simple action of respecting her wishes to self-determine her gender? I’m also thinking about the fact that she has just been sentenced to 35 years in a men’s prison, and the added pain and trauma of this misgendering in addition to that of imprisonment. Already the media is misgendering, using incorrect pronouns, posting inflammatory comparison pictures. I hope the left will do better.

and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

5 Comments

  1. Posted August 22, 2013 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    I wonder if the Bradley Manning Support Network will print Chelsea Manning Support t-shirts, stickers and posters?
    Would it be inappropriate for me to continue wearing my Free Bradley Manning t-shirt? Thoughts?

  2. Posted August 22, 2013 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    If you support a presidential pardon for Manning, please sign Amnesty International’s petition:
    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/restore-united-states%E2%80%99-human-rights-record-and-grant-clemency-pvt-bradley-manning/L7zHZv4r

    (The petition still refers to Manning as “Bradley” because it was posted before her announcement.)

  3. Posted August 22, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    I was ignorant until the news report this morning, as I have not been following the case. Reportedly, Manning will need to transfer to a federal prison to receive hormone treatment or sex reassignment surgery, as it is unavailable at the military prison. It is an added burden and safety issue for her in addition to being labeled a “traitor” in a military prison. I wish her well.

  4. Posted August 22, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    Her wiki page is already updated, and automatically redirects to Chelsea Manning. So hopefully the t-shirts are next in line!

  5. Posted August 23, 2013 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    “Now is the time when the solidarity politics of the folks on the left who have been behind Manning this whole time will be tested – will they take the simple action of respecting her wishes to self-determine her gender?”

    It’s sad the question has to be asked. It’s sadder that the answer for many will be in the negative.

    The “womyn born womyn” in the Radical Lesbian Feminist collectives are already outdoing “Focus on the Family” in berserk fury.

Feministing In Your Inbox

Sign up for our Newsletter to stay in touch with Feministing
and receive regular updates and exclusive content.

176 queries. 0.799 seconds