The PJ Tatler

So Bradley Manning is Now Chelsea Manning

Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks Man of Mystery, says he’s really a woman. And from now on, call me Chelsea. James Bond, he ain’t.

One day after being sentenced to 35 years in prison for the largest leak of classified documents in U.S. history, the Army private the world knows as Bradley Manning issued a statement about who she really is. “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,” Manning wrote in a statement read on the Today show. “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).”

The letter is signed Chelsea E. Manning, and thanks supporters for raising awareness of her case.

Manning is likely to serve her time at Fort Leavenworth, which doesn’t offer hormone therapy or sex-reassignment surgery to prisoners, as reported by Courthouse News. David Coombs, Manning’s lawyer, was not sure if Fort Leavenworth would offer Manning hormone therapy, though he said on Today that he was “hoping” the prison “would do the right thing.”

That lawyer’s concept of “doing the right thing” probably doesn’t mesh with most Americans’, as it’s a call to have the taxpayers pay for sex reassignment therapy and surgery for a guy who just got convicted of spilling the nation’s secrets in a fit of pique. TriCare aka “try and get care” doesn’t cover that, at least not yet, and as long as Manning is in military prison, he’s subject to the UCMJ and to military health care regs. He can get wisdom teeth removed, but for the kinds of things he wants removed, if that happens it’s on his tab. Well, unless some of his fans decide to run a Kickstarter campaign for him. I wouldn’t be shocked at all if something like that happened.

There’s all kinds of wrong with this story. Manning’s defense was, essentially, that the Army should’ve known he was too crazy to be allowed to handle top secret material. That’s a fair point. But political correctness kept the Army from acting to kick him out, just as it kept Nidal Hasan safe from any move to kick him out despite his obvious disciplinary problems prior to his murderous rampage at Fort Hood.

In both cases, political correctness resulted in harm to the nation and good people getting killed.